Bronwyn G

Derrick, I think you hit on a really important thing about writing. Details make communiaction so interesting. I'm glad you've decided to work on being a better blogger, because then it will make your work so easy and interesting to read.

Sentence fluency? How do I achieve that? I gather everything around the main idea.

By the way paragraphs don't always have to be 3-5 sentences. Magazines and newspapers and even teachers say that, but it isn't always true. I think with sentence fluency, too, look at the little words as much as the big ones. Like with your "Go get your pencil" example.

I would refine my grammar slightly so that it is more like written language than like spoken language. There's the concept of register that linguists and others use. There's formal, standard and informal register.

When you wrote:
"I love weblogs but there is some things I can work on."

that was informal register.

Standard register would be
"I love weblogs, but there are things I could work on."

Formal register would be, "There are things I might work on to fulfill my love of weblogs."

The verbs are the flexible things. Adjectives are secondary at best. I try to use as few of them as possible, and look for the exactly right word. Unfortunately, my vocabulary of adjectives is really small, so my ability to talk about details is limited. So I use a well-chosen verb or a specific noun.

And there are more types of adjectives than three! I learnt about the different kinds when I was studying Editing during my first full year of Professional Writing and Editing. It was a compulsory subject, and I did fairly well. In fact, I was the one answering the questions. By the way, articles are now called determiners, at least by grammaticians and people interested in the field. There are more determiners than a, the, and an. There are determiners like this, that, which, what (yes! That's a determiner, as well as a question), and pronouns can stand as determiners sometimes. Grammar is flexible but it has rules.

Another good way for me to look at sentence fluency when I'm writing, as well as looking at the topic content, is to parse a sentence. Is it sufficiently variable and interesting for the reader?

My New Years' Resolution, therefore, is to continue to work on the fundamentals of English grammar to be a better person in life, and it will help me with other languages. Lots of people study foreign languages so it helps them with the English grammar (if English is their mother tongue), but that's really backwards. I would achieve this by checking my sentences with the Australian Style Guide. Perhaps if you had hold of a similar resource, it would help you be a better blogger. Also, I think there are books and websites specifically on writing for the Web. You would do worse than to check these out.

I would work on the laziness and tiredness, as your fundamentals seem to be sound. Perhaps they seem like things you can't help, but every writer has to cope with them to some extent. It is the consequence of us being animal and not mineral (or vegetable - sorry to those in a persistent vegetative state!).

Bronwyn G

As I read over my comment to you, I can see what my resolution might have been.

1. Be more concise as a writer - cut to the chase!
and 2. Stay on topic.

Mrs. Emmert

Derrick, my resolution is usually just to be healthier and happier in the new year.
I can tell your resolution to write with details, etc. is helping your writing.
By the way, I had a hard time reading your posts because of the font color. Is is always like this, or just my computer?

Bronwyn G

No, Mrs E, it isn't just your computer.

Derrick, I find a great way to make my blog (or any webpage) readable is to use contrasting/complimentary colours. It might be better to use light colours in the background and darker colours in the foreground, where we can see everything you have to say.

Usually when I find a blog difficult to read I put it into bigger type and then paste it into OpenOffice or my nearest handy text editor.

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