For this week’s look at “Championship Writing,” consider Chapter 6, “Short words.”
Author Paula LaRocque approves of George Orwell’s words, “Fuzzy writing always means fuzzy thinking.”
If thinking isn’t a problem, LaRocque says, “Then all we must do is focus on form. How shall we deliver the result of our careful thought?”
She favors using one-syllable words often. Putting a message into simple words “yields both precision and warmth.”
For example, she favors “might cut a deal” over “might settle the case before it goes to trial.”
Are you giving me a report? I might yawn at you. But tell me a story, and you’ll have my attention.
I think of that argument, and this chapter, when I’m reading the op-ed pages or looking for bloggers I enjoy reading.
I might not agree with a writer’s politics, but I’ll read his work just for the great ways he expresses his views.
Fellow bloggers, I might not know your topic well, but if you tell good stories about it, I’ll keep reading them.
“Memorable language is usually simplified language,” writes LaRocque.
I admit it — I love that “usually.”
For the next post, “Fadspeak,” come on back next Monday — or subscribe on the button above.