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A Request for Examples of Awful Formal Writing

Ross at Play
Updated:

I started a thread here recently titled 'Formal Writing Need Not be Awful'.

In that I included a sample of formal writing. The subject matter was very complex. It explained how humans' capacity for empathy evolved, that when we see another we care about in pain the first part of our brain triggered is the emotional response we would have in their situation, but not the physical response.

It is a superb piece of formal writing. The only suggestions I can find to improve it are:
_1. The 225-word paragraph is too long. It can be broken up into three logical parts: the history of research in the field, the mechanics of its groundbreaking experiment, and the conclusions of that experiment.
_2. The final sentence could use some extra punctuation to clearly identify the subject of the verb evolved.

Many, rightfully complain that formal writing is stilted and disjointed because it contains so many punctuation marks and other crap required by the rules of formal writing. This example only had two commas not there only because the author chose to interrupt the main flow of her sentences with parenthetic asides. I would have used those commas in fiction too. Both were in sentences joining two reasonably lengthy parts with but.

I examined each of the sentences closely. To me, they all appeared to have been written in a way similar to that recommended in Strunk's original version of The Elements of Style. That's only the 40-page "cheat sheet" he wrote for his students. It is unstructured, making it hard to read. It has a dictatorial tone and insists on many standards that even the most anally retentive of formal writers these days would consider old-fashioned and inapplicable.

Despite all its shortcomings, it is included in every list I've ever seen by famous authors giving their recommended reading list to other writers. The advise it contains on how to write clearly – not all the other crap about grammar and punctuation, etc. – is actually superb and as relevant as ever today.

Personally, I would not recommend it. I suggest Roy Peter Clarke's Writing Tools instead. It contains all of Strunk's good advice, brought up-to-date, with many other valuable pieces of advice as well, and all written in a style that is a joy to read. He actually demonstrates how to use his own advice in the way he has written it.

Another example of a superb technical writer is Grammar Girl. Some of her blogs cover very complex topics. I always find them not only easy to understand but a joy to read, simply to observe the way she writes.

The point of this post is my conclusion is that formal writing has an appalling reputation here that is totally undeserved. YES, most formal writing we see is awful, but I don't think that is caused by writers following the rules of formal writing. I am convinced it is simply caused by bad writers, i.e. those who've never learned the principles of good writing as set out most famously, if not for the first time, by Strunk.

I want to test that theory.

I want others here to give me the worst examples of formal writing they can find so I can see what I can do with them.

I want to test if I can turn almost any sow's ear into at least a cotton purse!

I'm almost certain that could be done by a writer who good enough. I'm honestly not sure if I'm there - yet.

This is very important to me. The implications are very serious for the kind of advice newer writers are getting here, or just picking up based on the weight of derogatory remarks about formal writing they see here.

Please, hit me with your best shots. If those here don't give me examples to test, I'll throw it open to all readers on the site with a blog post.

My requirements for the samples I want to test are very broad:
_1. They must be an explanation of something technical
_2. The length should be at most about 250 words
_3. The person submitting them to me must have enough knowledge of the point being explained to tell me what their interpretation of individual sentences would be.

I am looking forward to this challenge. I sincerely want to know if my opinion that formal writing need not be awful can actually be proven.

Crumbly Writer

Since this thread is not specifically targeted at me, I won't dump on it, but I will bring up some of the same threads. While agree with Ross about there being examples of decent writing in non-fiction (especially now that so much of it is switching over to 'fictionalized' accounts, with purely invented dialogue containing details we'd never know about actual people), I offer the following disclaimers.

First of all, one proposal of mine which was misidentified before, wasn't that it's safe ignoring commas, but that it's important, in all styles of writing, to consider the pacing and delivery, and how something will be read. If a comma slows readers down during an important passage, I consider it better for the piece to ignore that comma, simply because the entire piece is more important than a single punctuation mark.

Following on that, I'll also repeat my advice about complex sentences. While complex sentences are fine with most readers, it's important to keep them on target. Thus, every sentence, no matter how complex it is, needs to focus on a single topic, so they don't lose the reader midway through.

The sentence that Ross points out did exactly that. The 'parenthetic aside' yanked the reader out of the summary before the piece made it's most important conclusion.

This happens even in fiction, though we use em-dashes or commas rather than parentheses, but even these need to be watched. While it's helpful to throw in the occasional foreshadowing element, red-herrings, or simply humorous asides, we set them apart from the rest of the sentence while keeping the entire sentence focused on a single thought (i.e. you don't stop in the middle of an important sentence to deliver what's best served in a footnote, you keep the central theme of the sentence moving forwards).

The idea is, readers get lost, not by complex thoughts, but by conflicting thoughts. Thus, you state an idea simply, and then you build on it, expanding it, before expanding on exceptions and alternatives. Readers can follow each of these, but not if they're dragged kicking and screaming before they've figured out the central point they're all based on.

An example of a complex sentence which keeps to a single thought are example sentences. While I don't have any I can quote offhand, they'd fit into the category of:

Writing complex sentences can be confusing, as they often include extraneous examples—which weaken the argument—alternatives—which confuse the central issue—and asides—which don't really help the central idea at all.

You'll notice that I structured that example with more complex punctuation than a simple parentheses, denoting that the asides are merely that, not part of the central idea, but something separate from it. But in this case, the central idea being promoted are the exceptions, so it's easy for the reader to follow the logic, as each case proves the central point about how distracting asides can be.

As far as Skunk and Whitey (:)), authors recommend it for newbie writers because it's the first step in structuring their stories, and linking ideas in a story, rather than it's the last word in how to structure a story or even how to properly format a story.

Once you've learned how to separate ideas, you need to carry those ideas forward, proposing themes, expanding on them over time, and then following the offshoots which keep those central themes entertaining, while also illustrating how the central themes apply. But that's much more complex than Skunk's overly simplistic work of non-fiction fiction!

All that said, I'm looking forward to Ross's challenge, as we each need to work on simplifying and presenting our ideas in the most coherent method. While many prefer the simple 'minimalistic' approach, I maintain that many reader prefer complex ideas which challenge them, but still need the information delivered in an easily digestible format.

Ross at Play

@Crumbly Writer

As far as Skunk and Whitey

I was VERY, VERY clear I DID NOT mean anything Strunk did later on with White.
I specified just the original 40-page version. That contains a lot of gems that are as valid today as ever - in among old-fashioned, dictatorial pontifications.

Ross at Play
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer

authors recommend it for newbie writers because it's the first step in structuring their stories

That's not why authors recommend the one I actually identified.

They recommend the other one because they think it's a good idea for new authors to learn how to write one good sentence pretty early in their writing career.

That's all I'm trying to test here.

Dominions Son

@Ross at Play

The point of this post is my conclusion is that formal writing has an appalling reputation here that is totally undeserved. YES, most formal writing we see is awful, but I don't think that is caused by writers following the rules of formal writing.


I think you have gone wrong, and it starts not with the theory you wish to test, but with your basic premise.

Formal writing is not well regarded here, not because it is generally awful, but because is is the polar opposite of what the authors here do, writing fiction.

Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

I think you have gone wrong, and it starts not with the theory you wish to test, but with your basic premise.

Formal writing is not well regarded here, not because it is generally awful, but because is is the polar opposite of what the authors here do, writing fiction.

It's the same with your previous challenge. It's not that it's not a worthy endeavor, in itself, it's just that, few here are interested in wasting time perfecting their non-fiction writing skills—especially since much of what they might learn isn't consistent with what they need to do in fiction.

Although most frequent their non-productive time here on the forum, that doesn't mean that they want to dedicate the rest of their time chasing pointless exercises just to keep you amused.

I'd rather see authors requesting suggestions for specific problematic sentences they're struggling with, as those are not only informative for everyone, but it's a straightforward exercise, and also directly helps the poster.

Ross at Play

@Dominions Son

Formal writing is not well regarded here, not because it is generally awful, but because is is the polar opposite of what the authors here do, writing fiction.

I disagree. I think the way good formal writers will structure one sentence is very similar to good authors of fiction.

Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

I disagree. I think the way good formal writers will structure one sentence is very similar to good authors of fiction.

I agree. The only reason why non-fiction gets a bad rap, is that most academic professors aren't paid for easy to read work, while their profession rests on their sounding smarter than every other Phd. in the room. Thus they're encouraged to write convoluted, hard to decipher dreck.

In fiction, if your story is difficult to read, no one buys it! If a tenured professor writes a snooze-fest, it's yet another publication to his credit, which he can list on his resume, whether anyone reads it or not.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play
Updated:

ETA
This post was always intended to be:
@Crumbly Writer

Your NEED to make your first post is a prime example of what you do so often here that drives me crazy. And I have heard similar complaints from many others too.

It did not matter to you how clear I was that I was looking for EVIDENCE! You just could not help yourself. You had to list your opinions at great length, with nothing to substantiate them, and as always, you worded your post as if it was statements of undeniable facts rather than the mere opinions they were.

YOU HAVE NO IDEA what I may recommend to new authors if my investigations reveal what I expect.

YOU JUST ASSUMED - FALSELY - you knew my intentions and jumped in to set the record straight.

JUST ONCE will you not assume everybody here needs to know every one of your opinions - NOW! You ARE NOT an infallible oracle on everything related to writing fiction.

JUST ONCE have enough REAL CONCERN for the futures of newer writers, rather than just your ego, to accept the possibility that one of your opinions might not be all there is to know.

WAIT FOR THE EVIDENCE before telling us all what the correct conclusions are.

* * *

You do many things here I value very highly. At other times I think your absolute conviction that everything you believe is absolute gospel is causing serious and permanent damage to new authors here.

I cannot cope any more dealing with you the way that things have been until now.

I am going to set limits on myself for all my dealings with you here.

I intend to make absolutely certain I limit myself so that any further personal attacks by you on me will be so clearly out of order that Lazeez will feel compelled to sanction you. If he has never done so in the past, I think that is because there has always something that could be pointed to explain how you were provoked. I will not get anything like that in the future from me to allow for such an excuse.

I have thought about what how to set out my new rules for dealing with you. I was planning to do that today but an idea for a new story has delayed that. They will be posted on this thread soon.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Ross at Play
Updated:

@Crumbly Writer

@ Me
I disagree. I think the way good formal writers will structure one sentence is very similar to good authors of fiction.

@ You
I agree ...

THANK YOU.

The post I just made would have been quite different if you'd asked what my OP actually meant instead of jumping in based on false assumptions about what I might be planning.

I have very similar conclusions to you about academic writing. That system encourages, enforces even, poor writing - so that only members of their exclusive clubs are capable of, or pretend to, understand what the others actually mean. If nobody else can understand us - we must be smarter than them. :(

Switch Blayde

@Ross at Play

I think the way good formal writers will structure one sentence is very similar to good authors of fiction.


You're assuming formal writing is boring. Not so.

Stuffy might be the better word. For example, contractions aren't used in formal writing.

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play
Updated:

@Switch Blayde

You're assuming formal writing is boring. Not so.

I'm saying the OPPOSITE of that.

Good formal writing is not boring to read. Do you ever find Grammar Girl's writing stuffy or boring? I don't.

What I'm trying to suggest is authors of fiction should look for what she does differently to most other formal writers. There is actually not much to it. An ambitious author could pick up those skills early on and become a much better writer at writing anything for the rest of their lives.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Crumbly Writer
Updated:

@Ross at Play


Your NEED to make your first post is a prime example of what you do so often here that drives me crazy. And I have heard similar complaints from many others too.


Just to be clear, I'm assuming you're referring to me, since I've posted most of the responses.

As I stated, I did get your point, but frankly see the search for uninspired non-fiction to be a waste of time. Rather than focusing on bad writing, I'd rather focus on successful writing that we can imitate and learn new techniques from.

My initial response, which triggered the complaints about my post, was that I didn't want to waste my time searching for something for you to attack.

And you're perfectly right about my approach. I dive in head first, sounding convinced, even when I'm proposing alternatives. But that's more my technique, as I'm trying to show my tentative arguments in their best light, and saying 'maybe another approach is ...' simply presents tepid advice which others are more likely to interpret and unconvincing.

But my main objective, is that you're main aim is to understand basic grammar, while for many of us, we simply want to tell better stories. Spending time agonizing over the failure of others won't make any of us better writers, it just makes us self-conscious, and takes us farther from what we're comfortable with.

If it wasn't directed at me, then forget everything I just said. Anyway, it's obvious I've already wasted too much time unproductively here, and have worn out my welcome once again. I should have quit after the first 'attaboy'.

Dominions Son

@Ross at Play

Good formal writing is not boring to read.


My personal experience is that whether or not non-fiction is boring to read depends as much, if not more, on my level of interest in the subject matter than it does on the quality of the writing. That doesn't mean that the quality of the writing of non-fiction doesn't matter at all.

I read fiction to be entertained. I read non-fiction to be informed.

Personally, I find non-fiction that actively tries to be entertaining to be counter productive to the general purpose of reading non-fiction.

awnlee jawking

@Ross at Play

It explained how humans' capacity for empathy evolved,


No it didn't, and that's why the article you posted was IMO poor. The level of technical detail was above that of a lay person yet not sufficient for expert readers to draw the same conclusion as the author, so just who was the target of the article?

AJ

Replies:   Ross at Play
Switch Blayde

@Crumbly Writer

but frankly see the search for uninspired non-fiction to be a waste of time.


Formal writing does not mean non-fiction.

In days past, the narrative part of fiction was formal writing. No contractions. Proper grammar and punctuation by the omniscient narrator. Read any of the 3rd-person omniscient classics.

Today's genre fiction is written more informally. That's what people want to read. So contractions are used in the narrative. Fragmented sentences are used for effect.

Switch Blayde

@Dominions Son

I read fiction to be entertained. I read non-fiction to be informed.


"Killing Lincoln" is non-fiction and very entertaining to read.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Ross at Play

@Crumbly Writer

Just to be clear, I'm assuming you're referring to me

Sorry. Yes, it was directed at you. I've fixed that now.
I wrote the draft my draft and planned to post it as a Reply to Post at you.

Ross at Play

@Crumbly Writer

I did get your point, but frankly see the search for uninspired non-fiction to be a waste of time. Rather than focusing on bad writing, I'd rather focus on successful writing

I am entirely focused on successful writing. I hope to prove that a good formal writer can turn whatever awful examples others choose into successful writing. I am not certain I am good enough for that, but I want to try. If I succeed we will all finally have evidence on which to base our recommendations about how best to develop their skills as authors of fiction.

that you're main aim is to understand basic grammar

Seriously, do you ever read what others say here?
I could not have made myself more clear. This exercise is NOT ABOUT GRAMMAR. It is about what all writers, formal or informal, should learn so that they are capable of turning any idea into one sentence easy for readers to parse and crafted in a way so that the words and phrasing, by themselves, create interest and enjoyment for readers.

IS IT SO BIZARRE to think authors of fiction should learn to write one good sentence during they first attempt to write a novel?

Note that the reasons behind my post had nothing to do with anything you had written on this thread. I had already made my decisions about how to cope with you in the future. If I had not been diverted by a new story I am now writing I would have posted a detailed specifications of those decisions instead. I will do that soon. You will not change. I cannot cope with the aggrevation you repeated cause to me the way things have been. I will change what I do!

My "objections" to your previous post were nothing more than a convenient introduction for my explanation of the delay in announcing the precise details of the changes in my approach to dealing with you. I will change that approach to you from now, before I publically define them. My next post that references anything you have done may be very different to the type you would have come to expect.

And yes, I was pissed that, as you so typically do, jumped in to give us all the benefits of your opinions without even knowing what my intentions were, nor waiting for the evidence I stated so clearly I was attempting to collect. Just one more example of the things you do I am determined to not suffer from anymore without doing everything within my capacity to prevent.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
Ross at Play

@Dominions Son

I read fiction to be entertained. I read non-fiction to be informed.

I do that too.

Personally, I find non-fiction that actively tries to be entertaining to be counter productive to the general purpose of reading non-fiction.

My personal responses are somewhat different. I have a relatively high threshold for the minimum quality of writing I will accept for both fiction and non-fiction.
There are some fabulous storytellers on this site I will not read. I'm simply not prepared to struggle through the language they use to get to their stories.
I apply that even moreso with nonfiction. There are surely some writers on writing whose explanations and expertise are at least as good as Grammar Girl's. I will would not read them if their writing does not match the standard of advice they are giving to others. I am always willing to read anything Grammar Girl writes.

We are not at odds here, DS. Peace be with you.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Ross at Play

@awnlee jawking

@ Me
It explained how humans' capacity for empathy evolved,

@You
No it didn't, and that's why the article you posted was IMO poor. The level of technical detail was above that of a lay person yet not sufficient for expert readers to draw the same conclusion as the author, so just who was the target of the article?

You may have seen something in it I could not detect.

My assessment was it contained only one potential ambiguity which could have been resolved with some extra punctuation. My guess was experts in that field would know the correct interpretation from their background knowledge.
For a lay person - I assume Scientific American reprinted it from some specialist journal - my assessment was it only really needed to be divided up into digestible size chunks to be accessible to them too.

IIRC, Geek of Ages made a comment that he found it accessible in its original form.

Dominions Son

@Ross at Play

I am entirely focused on successful writing. I hope to prove that a good formal writer can turn whatever awful examples others choose into successful writing.


No, you are focused on quality writing. Success is something different and depends on the purpose behind the writing.

For commercial publishing, fiction or non-fiction, success = sales $$.

For academic (faculty) writing success = publication in an academic journal. Whether anyone reads or understands what is written is irrelevant, as long as it is accepted for publication. Professors are required to publish in their fields and their performance is measured purely on quantity, not quality.

For academic (student) writing, success = a good grade.

Ross at Play

@Dominions Son

No, you are focused on quality writing. Success is something different

Yes, you are absolutely correct.

Apparently I'm a bit off my game this morning. My instinct for thoroughly deserved cynicism usually works a bit better than that. :-)

awnlee jawking

@Dominions Son

Professors are required to publish in their fields and their performance is measured purely on quantity, not quality.


Sadly true. There's a definite inverse relationship between the quality of medical studies and the academic credentials of their lead authors :(

AJ

Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

"Killing Lincoln" is non-fiction and very entertaining to read.

Killing Lincoln was entertaining and informative, but it's also part of the new 'fictional non-fiction' or 'literary non-fiction' movement, where the biographers create entirely fictional dialogue that never actually took place to make the entire history seem more 'authentic', even when it's not.

As such, it's technically not entirely 'non-fiction'.

Crumbly Writer

@Ross at Play

Seriously, do you ever read what others say here?
...
IS IT SO BIZARRE to think authors of fiction should learn to write one good sentence during they first attempt to write a novel?

Once again, we're talking past each other, discussing two different things but never quite connecting.

Yes, your effort to improve your skills in commendable. But instead of doing it yourself, you tried to make it into a personal challenge, first directed at me, and then when I balked at everyone else).

My point was NEVER that you shouldn't try your exercise, or that it wouldn't be helpful. Instead, I was arguing that it was unproductive for the fiction authors here to engage in the challenge, as it features skills which aren't directly transferable to fiction (i.e. many of the techniques used in non-fiction don't apply to fiction, so we'd do better by focusing on badly written fiction rather than badly written non-fiction).

So I understood exactly what you were trying to say. I just objected to the way you were going about it.

But more importantly, I wasn't dumping on YOU. Instead, I was trying to nudge you into changing the focus (fiction, rather than non-fiction) of your challenges, and more importantly, changing your overly aggressive challenges into discussions (however, I did it in an overly aggressive manner, myself).

What we had here, was two different people shouting at each other, and neither one hearing a word of what the other is saying (or at least not acknowledging what they other is saying).

Also, there is absolutely no need for us to be having this discussion in a public forum. If we have issues with each other, we should sit down and talk it out like adults, rather than throwing tantrums, or running to the teacher (Lazeez) and requesting that he ban me from contributing to the forum.

Every time you've attempted that in the past, you've been shot down, and each time you've subsequently threatened to take your ball (all the authors you edit) with you to play ball somewhere else, yet you never have.

Either learn how to work with others, or get off your damn soapbox!

Replies:   Ross at Play
Ross at Play

@Crumbly Writer

it features skills which aren't directly transferable to fiction (i.e. many of the techniques used in non-fiction don't apply to fiction

That is what I am trying to test.

The "challenge" to you was ONLY my way of poking back at you for some needless provocation.

Can you not see the possibility that good formal writing may be a small subset of good fiction. If so, and good formal formal writing can be learned by an author quickly, while good fiction can never be learned, doesn't it make sense to do work early on trying to learn a subset of skills that can be learned.

Can you explain what Grammar Girl does differently to other formal writers so that her writing is always easy to comprehend and enjoyable to read?

Don't you think fiction would be better if authors would be better if they learned what she does differently to other formal writers?

That is what I want to test. Is bad formal writing just bad writers, and does what make some formal writing good work for authors too.

I need samples of bad formal writing to test that theory. I cannot prove anything if I self-select the samples.

PLEASE, WAIT FOR SOME RESULTS OF THE TEST BEFORE STATING YOUR CONCLUSIONS.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Ross at Play

Can you explain what Grammar Girl does differently to other formal writers so that her writing is always easy to comprehend and enjoyable to read?


Grammar Girl tailors her writing style to be inclusive - for example, she doesn't exclude younger readers. She isn't tackling a hard science subject at an advanced level. And she isn't constructing legislation that has to be free of wriggle room.

AJ

Ross at Play

@awnlee jawking

She isn't tackling a hard science subject at an advanced level.

I'm almost certain she could handle that very easily. I'm saying I think I can handle that (that is what I want to test) and I know she's a much better writer than me.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Ross at Play

I'm almost certain she could handle that very easily.


I don't think there's any evidence that she's ever tackled science writing.

and I know she's a much better writer than me.


Have you read any of her fiction? 'Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.'

AJ

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

Grammar Girl tailors her writing style to be inclusive - for example, she doesn't exclude younger readers. She isn't tackling a hard science subject at an advanced level. And she isn't constructing legislation that has to be free of wriggle room.


So it's the subject matter, not that she writes perfect grammar.

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

Have you read any of her fiction? 'Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach.'


She's written many books. Not fiction. She's an editor, not a novelist. Books on grammar, punctuation, misused words, etc.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Dominions Son

@awnlee jawking

And she isn't constructing legislation that has to be free of wriggle room.


Actually, most legislators (politicians who mostly have legal backgrounds in terms of education) generally seem to prefer writing legislation with LOTS of wriggle room.

Switch Blayde
Updated:

Okay, so does formal writing need to be boring? What dryer subject matter than grammar? I just browsed the "Look Inside" on Grammar Girl's "Ultimate Writing Guide for Students" book. This section is on compound nouns which we've discussed here. It's on making them plural.

Some nouns are called compound nouns. Don't panic! All that means is that the noun is made up of more than one word—for example, brother-in-law. It's a small collection of words that make up a noun just as a family compound is a collection of buildings that make up a residence.

What's the main noun in brother-in-law? Brother, not law. The law part simply tells you what kind of brother he is. So, you put the s on brother when you're talking about two brothers-in-law.

If you came in second place in a track meet, you're the runner-up. If you tied for second, you're one of the runners-up.


Formal writing (uses "as" instead of using the informal "like"), clear, and not boring (well, it is grammar after all).

Dominions Son

@Switch Blayde

Okay, so does formal writing need to be boring?


Boring is too subjective and is in my opinion, more driven by the reader's level of interest in the subject matter than by the quality of the writing.

And poor quality writing generally leads to problems other than "boring".

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@Dominions Son

Boring is too subjective


That was my word. The question asked was whether formal writing had to be awful and complex.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Switch Blayde

The question asked was whether formal writing had to be awful and complex.


Awful? No.

Complex? This is more dependent on the subject matter than on formal vs informal writing.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

My intended point was that Ross was comparing Apples and Oranges. He can't say that Grammar Girl is a better writer across all fields of writing.

AJ

awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

Notice the chatty, simplistic style of writing. A typical preteen should be able to understand what she wrote.

Also notice the use of contractions - in formal writing. Shock! Horror!

AJ

Switch Blayde

@Dominions Son

Complex? This is more dependent on the subject matter than on formal vs informal writing.


Exactly. That's why I introduced the term boring. It's one thing not to understand something because you don't have a degree in advanced physics. Formal writing has nothing to do with that. I didn't understand what was meant by awful and complex.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Switch Blayde

Formal writing has nothing to do with that.


Nor does it have anything to do with interesting vs boring for exactly the same reason.

Capt. Zapp

@Switch Blayde

... uses "as" instead of using the informal "like" ...


Reminds me of the old Winston cigarette commercial.

Whadaya want? Good grammar or good taste?"


()____)_______))))) ~~

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