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EFFECTIVE WRITING Prepared by MBL

EFFECTIVE WRITING
 Clear organization and structure of the text (order of paragraphs relates to initial
thesis statement
 Logical flow of information (clear logical relations developed between the parts of
the text, the order of information builds up argument, connective words are used to
signal progression of arguments, transition statements lead one paragraph to the
next)
 sentence structure adds to the logical flow of information in the text ( the focus of
the sentence is put in the first part of the sentence, the second part contains new
information, which becomes the focus of the following sentences)
Paragraphs focused on single subject (subject words are repeated or replaced with
synonyms, pronouns, demonstratives, meaning the subject can be referenced
throughout the text)
SENTENCES (COMMON TO STUNNING)
1. common forms/usual forms (simple, compound…)
2. stunning (a dramatic flourish, an elegant
repetition, a conversational interjection)
ARSENAL OF PATTERNS
 In a single sentence, you can convey tone, style, and
message.
 think about length (anything more than 25 words, or
about two tines of typescript)
 SWIFT – not a clutter that contribute nothing
Ex.
Her novels registered these events most secretly, and her
letters registered these events not at all
 Add a dash (to set apart a block of words). Separate
movable from immovable (PP, clauses –which, that, if,
when)
Ex.
1. Propagandist, moralist, prophet – this is the rising
sequence.
2. At least two-thirds of us are just plain rich compared to
all the rest of the human family – rich in food, rich in
clothes, rich in entertainment and amusement, rich in
leisure, rich.
 Don’t give that emphasis away unnecessarily/ Choose the word
that you want to start with
Ex.
Americans, having been struck by an annual outbreak of filial
sentiment, make more long-distance calls on Mother’s day than on
any other day of the year.

Struck by an animal outbreak o filial sentiment, Americans make


more long-distance calls on Mother’s Day than on any other day of
the year.

 Think about balance (soothing rhythms, compelling cadences,


trimming and moving a part to the most felicitous places)
COMMON FORMS
 Should convey one idea – or two closely related ideas (25 words)
 The core – main clause
 Core Embellishments – modifying phrases and clauses – prepositional,
the defining.
 Complicating the embellished core – qualifying clauses – the
commenting, the conditional
 Multiplier effects – having two or more subjects, verbs, objects,
complements, phrases, clauses
DIRECT
One main clause
Starting point for variants
Ex.
Smart eateries are putting peculiar mushrooms on the menu.
Intimidatingly rugged men in blue blazers smoke cigars and sigh
about marrying too young.
EMBELLISH
Attach a phrase (f, m, e)

Ex.
By all these means, Alabama has made itself more like the rest of
America.
 ---- the opening by all theses means ties this sentence to its predecessors'’
presumed enumeration of the individual means
COMPLICATED
Add a comment (which clause)
Ex.
The book also suffers more than usual from Elshtain’s prose style, which is earnest at
best and plodding worst.

---- set off by commas, the which clause can be left out without disrupting the
meaning of the main clause.
CONDITIONED
Condition it with when, if, because, since, as and so on…

Ex.
When Mr. Clinton toasts Mr. Jiang at the White House nest week,
there will be no shortage of critics to accuse him of supping with
the devil.

--- The when clause tells us when there will be shortage of critics
MULTIPLIED
Combine foregoing structures and to multiply their parts

Ex.
The number of men who consider working women to be worse mothers has
dropped precipitously since 1970, but the number of women who think so has
dropped far less sharply.

---- two main clauses joined by but


OCCASIONAL SHORT FORMS
Fragments
To start a paragraph or point
To finish a paragraph or point
Pairs and trios
FRAGMENTS
Disallowed but they command attention.

Ex.
All the crusading doesn’t reassure the public. Just the opposite.
---- the full sentence would have been: Instead, it does just like the
opposite.
Stripping the first three words from the front and leaving the
fragment drives the reader straight to the point.