Sunday, June 13, 2010

Writing Is Everywhere and by Everyone

Everybody’s a writer these days. Not only do we expect journalists, attorneys, and novelists to be good writers, but we want quality prose from engineers, nurses, information technology professionals, equity research analysts, and managers of any stripe. The National Council of Teachers of English has rightly, albeit belatedly, expanded its definition of writing in a provocative white paper by Lorna Collier, Everyday Writing: Words Matter More Than Ever in 21st Century Workplace. This 10-page report covers the writing experiences of people in professions from student to military officer, from stay-at-home-parent to match teacher.

Because of the prevalence of web-based communication, people from all fields—restaurateurs, plumbers, nurses, paralegals, zookeepers, whatever—are now seeking creative ways to engage their audiences through the written word. The ten people surveyed in this paper offer insights you’re not likely to get from English professors.

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