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Haiku: Poetry Metagenics at the Pulitzer Center | Pulitzer Center

Haiku: Poetry Metagenics at the Pulitzer Center | Pulitzer Center | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

An interesting perspective on the why of haiku and the power that can be expressed in those 17 syllables.

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The Secret Emotional Lives of 5 Punctuation Marks

The Secret Emotional Lives of 5 Punctuation Marks | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Punctuation marks accept their utilitarian roles, but they too carry feelings, and they express them in subtle ways that are sometimes easy to miss.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Especially for those of you who might be a tad excessive with your use of exclamation points.

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A to X Writing Advice, Courtesy of Copy Chief Benjamin Dreyer

A to X Writing Advice, Courtesy of Copy Chief Benjamin Dreyer | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Benjamin Dreyer is the VP Executive Managing Editor & Copy Chief of Random House Publishing Group. Below is his list of …
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Love this.

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The First Sentence Is a Handshake

The First Sentence Is a Handshake | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
According to science fiction writer William Gibson, a book's opening should be an inviting enigma to the reader—and a motivational benchmark for the writer.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

A handshake tells you a lot about a person and in that brief moment of pressing flesh to flesh, people make assumptions about expectations, possibilities, character, and more, especially because one's eye contact is assessed at the same time as that handshake. Lots of chatter in those non-verbals.


I used to tell my writing students they had 35 words to get and keep the attention of their readers. 35 words. About the same as a handshake and check of eye contact.


Read the last few paragraphs of this piece carefully. You will learn at least three things: 1) writing takes time; 2) writing requires editing and revision; and 3) every writer has his or her own process.

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A.K.Andrew's curator insight, November 12, 12:53 PM

This article is particularly interesting as it is part of a series of different authors views on favourite pieces of literature 

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The 5 new rules of resume writing

The 5 new rules of resume writing | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
As an out-of-town job seeker based in Chicago, Stephanie Florence knew in 2011 that in order to land a job in New York City — nearly 900 miles away — her resume would have to go the extra mile, too...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I love some of this creativity and the willingness to go the extra mile to demonstrate why an applicant is the best choice for an organization. One caveat: remember your audience. What is appropriate for a public relations firm probably won't have the same positive impact for another type of organization.

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10 Words Every Writer Needs To Know

10 Words Every Writer Needs To Know | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Here are ten unusual words that sum up the writing experience, and our attitudes to writing, in one way or another....
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Oh I don't know if you really NEED to know them, but some of them are fun. And the whole NaNoWriMo thing? Write a novel in a month? Mmmm. Don't count on it. Maybe you'll get a bunch of pages written in a month, but the probabilities you'll have anything remotely publishable. . . .? Still, perhaps this is the incentive you need to write that novel.

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Good writing takes practice, not grammar drills, studies say

Good writing takes practice, not grammar drills, studies say | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Lots of practice and word processing software can make students better writers, but pounding grammar rules and diagramming sentences could actually make them worse Those are the lessons from the Hechinger Report's Education by the Numbers blog, based on an analysis of research on how to teach writing from Arizona State University. Here are three effective practices from...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Writing teachers sigh deeply when they see headlines like this. Grammar worksheets are rarely effective. I like diagramming sentences and I think there can be value in that work provided it has a context and an actual purpose. Diagramming sentences for the sake of diagramming sentences may be fun for some but is pointless for most.

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5 Things to Consider Before Becoming a Writer

5 Things to Consider Before Becoming a Writer | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
There are several things starting writers need to have before they take their first step to the exciting journey of becoming authors.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Some day very soon I'm going to consolidate some of the writing advice I've posted here. The underlying message here is that whenever you are offered easy tips to improve your writing quickly, ignore them.

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Take Your Writing Seriously | Writing Forward

Take Your Writing Seriously | Writing Forward | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
If you want to be a serious writer, you need to take the craft seriously.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Yes, the fabulous and gifted Nora Ephron is quoted: "What I find hard about writing is the writing." I like the emphasis on taking one's writing and one's writing process seriously.

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'The Rabble that Cannot Read'? Ordinary People's Literacy in Seventeenth-Century England

'The Rabble that Cannot Read'? Ordinary People's Literacy in Seventeenth-Century England | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Mark Hailwood Those of us historians intent on exploring the world of ordinary women and men in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries conduct a lot of our research by looking at surviving example...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

This is fascinating as an historical perspective on what constitutes "literacy."


"The methodology was simple: given that it was customary in the period for people to learn to read before learning to write, it was assumed that people who could write out their own signature were fully literate: they would have learned to both read and write."

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INFOGRAPHIC: This Is Why Grammar Matters

INFOGRAPHIC: This Is Why Grammar Matters | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
BREAKING: words matter....
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

It's not really breaking news, but it is important news. This could be an infographic worth sharing with high school and college students, too.

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10 Secrets of Successful Inservice Presentations

10 Secrets of Successful Inservice Presentations | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Making a talk? Find ideas to convey your message effectively in this excerpt from “The Ten-Minute Inservice” by Todd Whitaker & Annette Breaux.

Via Patti Kinney, Mark E. Deschaine, PhD, Ivon Prefontaine
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

A key to a successful inservice? Modeling how you believe educators should interact with their students.


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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, October 7, 9:13 PM

Some good points are made in the article. I found some people appropriated stories that were not their stories. Making it relevant suggests we should have a sense of what teachers and students think is important in their daily work.

 

@ivon_ehd1

Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's curator insight, October 8, 7:41 AM

A key to a successful inservice is modeling how we believe educators should interact with their students.

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PUB 101: The Shift From Print to Digital Literacy – Procrinspiration by

PUB 101: The Shift From Print to Digital Literacy – Procrinspiration by | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I am not enchanted by the idea of being edited and yet, when I am edited, my work is better. Why? Because the individual who edits my work does not have the same personal investment as I do, so the phrase or idea to which I have an unreasonable attachment causes them no pain when it is excised. Even more importantly, an editors reads and hears my work as others are likely to read and hear my work rather than how I hope they hear it. So this shift to self-publishing comes with some potential challenges for the reading community. On the other hand, I've read some pretty lame stuff an editor and publisher thought worthy of their investment, so go figure. Write on.

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How Student Essay Writing has Changed Since 1969

How Student Essay Writing has Changed Since 1969 | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Yes, you read that correctly. 45 years ago, I was teaching high school English at Niles East High School in Skokie, Illinois. In case you are wondering, I snagged that job right out of college. Nevertheless, if you do the math, you know you are reading the opinion of a former English teacher of a... Read more »
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

We've been talking about machine scoring student writing for a very long time now (http://www.journalofwritingassessment.org/article.php?article=58). Most English teachers reject the veracity of machine scoring because we are concerned about context, about voice, about style; that is, we are concerned about the individual behind the writing. Software systems like Turnitin.com got its start as a plagiarism checker but the system has expanded. It does not replace teacher grading, but it amplifies and supports the peer review process, and it has some nifty resources for speeding the grading process. I've used TrackChanges in Word, but the GradeMark system adds some really nifty tools for the teacher to use in the process of grading. So the tools amplify and support the teacher in the grading process, providing consistency (as needed) for students who will inevitably compare their papers.

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The Three Things You Learn When Famous Writers Reread Their Old Books

The Three Things You Learn When Famous Writers Reread Their Old Books | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
For the beguiling First Editions, Second Thoughts project, PEN America asked 61 writers and 14 artists to annotate their early works for a Dec. 2 auction at Christie’s New York, with proceeds going toward PEN’s cause of protecting “free expression for artists worldwide.” “I can say that it was probably...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I LOVE the observations of writers revisiting their work. So much to learn about observing the nuances of the written word but knowing how much WORK is part of that deft touch.

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Anne Lamott on Writing and Why Perfectionism Kills Creativity

Anne Lamott on Writing and Why Perfectionism Kills Creativity | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
"Perfectionism is the voice of the oppressor, the enemy of the people. It will keep you cramped and insane your whole life."

Anne Lamott'
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I love Lamott's Bird by Bird. Used parts of it as a text for my freshman writing class. Lamott reminds us, as do so many others, that writing can be wicked hard work just as it can be immensely rewarding.

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17 Writers On The Importance Of Reading

17 Writers On The Importance Of Reading | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
"Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them." —Lemony Snicket
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Bonus feature: links to the works from which the quotes are taken so there is more reading about writers and writing yet to be done, so there are more opportunities to satisfy curiosity, to connect with and meditate with great minds. . .

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10 Authors Bizarre Writing Habits

10 Authors Bizarre Writing Habits | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Authors writing habits never cease to fascinate me.  This week's blog post is dedicated to 10 famous authors bizarre writing habits.     Flannery O’Connor - Author and essayist Flannery O’Conn...
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

While you're getting down to writing that novel, you might reflect on some writing habits of the published. Are they truly bizarre? Well, some of them might be. Mostly they might seem odd. But the fact that so many incredibly successful writers go to such lengths to get down to the task of writing reminds us that writing often is not easy and rarely can it be done quickly.

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Three lessons from the science of how to teach writing - Education By The Numbers

Three lessons from the science of how to teach writing - Education By The Numbers | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
evidence-based writing instruction methods
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

1. Spend more time writing. Yes. I agree with that completely, but student writing can't be in a void. There has to be some sort of constructive feedback. Writing poorly repetitively is not going to improve one's writing.


2. Write on a computer. Hmmm, maybe. Writing could be faster and easier if the student has typing proficiency. Poor keyboarding skills could make writing frustrating. There are many possible advantages for students writing on a computer, including collaboration and peer feedback, each of which can have its own complications if not well-considered.


3. Grammar instruction doesn't work. Well, let's investigate this generalization a wee bit. Grammar instruction CAN work if done well and if done with specific objectives in mind.


Even so, each of these lessons does have value with certain provisions and caveats. But isn't that often the case?

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Professors explain style of academic writing

Professors explain style of academic writing | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Any student who
has poured through obscure textbooks on philosophical concepts or failed to
understand a professor’s paper knows that academic writing can seem like its
own language.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

And in many ways academic writing does require its own language: that of the discipline and reflecting the style of the discipline and the typical reader. Some really good insights here.

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3 Strategies to Improve Student Writing Instantly

3 Strategies to Improve Student Writing Instantly | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Guest blogger Ali Parrish, educator and ed tech consultant, provides three strategies, low-tech and high-tech, for breaking through students' brain freeze when faced with the dilemma of what to write.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

This is true for anyone who struggles with getting ideas on paper or on screen. I often had my students record their words because that gave them the freedom to talk through their ideas. Then they could transcribe their own recording and edit as they went. The advantage is they wouldn't lose their ideas as they struggled with how to phrase something or which words to use. AND, we could listen to their recordings together to talk through those passages during which they struggled and talk about how and why they struggled so those moments of frustration could become times of clarity and learning.

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Suvi Salo's curator insight, October 28, 1:56 PM

I also like to share a common Google Docs page and write together.

Jimena Acebes Sevilla's curator insight, October 28, 11:11 PM

Para escribir....

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Keep Writing, and It Will Soon Be Automatic

Keep Writing, and It Will Soon Be Automatic | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Analyzing the brain scans of experienced fiction writers.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I'm intrigued by the articles offering quick tips for faster or easier writing. That flies in the face of experienced and published writers who tell us that writing is hard work. But I think there is some automaticity in writing for those who do it every day and have been doing it for a while. The result may not be great or even good, but the habit of firing up ideas and thoughts should be less daunting and perhaps even a bit easy.

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10 Easy Solutions to Business Writing Problems

10 Easy Solutions to Business Writing Problems | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
These techniques can help you sharpen your text to better reach your intended audience.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Good advice for clear and focused writing.

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Why Little Free Libraries Are the Water Coolers of the Digital Age

Why Little Free Libraries Are the Water Coolers of the Digital Age | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
The popular, homemade ‘give a book, take a book’ boxes bring neighbors together.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Little Free Libraries are just cool. And it encourages READING, maybe even the serendipity of reading a book or article or essay that seems appealing, which is one of the hoped for results after wrestling with a writing project.

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, October 14, 6:52 PM

As many Schools do away with libraries and librarians, this is a wonderful idea. It would also be wonderful if we retained libraries and librarians in School.

 

@ivon_ehd1

A.K.Andrew's curator insight, October 15, 10:53 AM

These are fantastic additions to neighborhoods.

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Science says those grammar rules you learned in middle school were a waste of time

Science says those grammar rules you learned in middle school were a waste of time | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Steven Pinker on why you can split infinitives and use the passive voice.
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

Oh pish tosh. Of course you CAN use passive voice or split infinitives. There have been numerous discussions on how much more powerful "to boldly go" is than "to go boldly" would have been. Now I wouldn't go so far as to try to outdo the venerable Strunk & White though I've not read Mr. Pinker's potentially self-aggrandizing tome. But any "mere" English teacher will tell you there are exceptions to many grammar rules, that many grammar rules have changed and others will change over time. They should also tell you, however, that any time you break a rule, know why you are breaking that rule and that your writing will be more effective because you have broken the rule.

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Nicholas C. Rossis's curator insight, October 10, 12:26 PM

I agree!  Just keep in mind that you are breaking a rule, explain yourself why, read out your sentence and continue.

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3 Ways to Stick to a Writing Schedule | Everything's Temporary

3 Ways to Stick to a Writing Schedule | Everything's Temporary | Writing Matters | Scoop.it
Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's insight:

I am a list maker. I often lose my list and too frequently I have lists of lists, but I make lists. And I write stuff down or somehow record it as it occurs to me--whatever the ideas--using scraps of paper, sticky notes, Evernote, voice messages to myself. Seriously. And then later, when I have time to sift, filter, and think through, I discard some things, make connections with others, and post others somewhere while I continue to think about them.


What works for me might not work for you. My friend Vicki Davis (@coolcatteacher) has a candle at her writing place. She lights it with a match and leaves the matches on the candle holder. At the end of the week, she should have at least five matches to help her hold herself accountable for writing at least five days a week. You'll figure out what works best for you and how it works best for you. Now figuring out what to say and how to say, well, that's a completely different story.

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