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Whole Individuals, Writing

Throw Your Spaghetti Against the Wall

By Molly Dougherty, The Writing Center -  Things have been a little, uh, hectic for the Maven these days, leaving the blog cruelly devoid of tips on How Not to Write Bad Stuff.  But I’m back and sufficiently fortified with fabulous Trader Joe’s snax, so here I go. Words of wisdom.  Deep insights worthy of being needlepointed on your grandma’s favorite pillow. Razor-sharp observations on the beautiful interplay of nouns, verbs, adjectives, subjects, predicates, and dependent clauses twirling across my computer screen. Here they come.

Whole Individuals, Writing

Really?? Yes, Really.

By Molly Dougherty, The Writing Center - Let me tell you how I feel about the use of (most) intensifiers in professional or academic writing.  Words like, REALLY.  Or VERY.  Or EXTREMELY. When I read an otherwise well-written paper discussing the transmission of HIV/AIDS and the (student) writer describes it as “a really desperate situation” I just think — really?  Did you actually use “really” in this kind of piece?

Whole Individuals, Writing


By Molly Dougherty, The Writing Center -  One of the things I’m always advising students to do to improve their writing is simply reading. “But Maven,” you say, “I have no time for non-school-related reading.”  Oh piffle, says the Maven.  Everyone has time to read a timely article on an interesting subject written by some of the best writers in the country.  And no, I’m not talking about Us Weekly.

Whole Individuals, Writing


By Molly Dougherty, The Writing Center -  Okay, okay, since you asked so nicely, I will share with you my Philosophy of Writing (at least as it pertains to academic / business writing).