As a writer, there are certain "rules" you're supposed to follow in terms of style. Even if you're not a writer, you're affected by these styles as they dictate what you read in media stories. A couple of guys decided to take some liberties with those guidelines and created a Twitter account named fakeapstylebook to parody the rules, and that led to this book... Write More Good: An Absolutely Phony Guide by The Bureau Chiefs. If you've ever had to write an article for some publication (and you have a sense of humor), this is a great parody that offers plenty of laughs and hits close to the truth on more than one occasion.
Contents: News & Headline Writing & You & Journalism Politics: When The Horse Race Lasts 30 Months Entertainment: The Glitz, The Glamour, The Death of the Superego Sex: Ew Religion Sports: The Sport of Kings The Shiny Money Box, Or, Technology and the Death of All Paper Science (and the Blinding By Thereof) Pseudoscience and the Supernatural: Ya Rly Weapons and the Military: Shoot First, Then Ask Questions About Shooting Citation and Attribution: Do Not Hit the Snooze Button Punctuation and Grammar: LOL Media Law: You Are So Screwed The Morgue: The Dead Live! The Ghost of Basics Past Glossary
Each chapter starts out with a few snide comments about the topic, slides into the "basics" along with related detail that spares nothing and no one, and then ends with a topic glossary that is far more interesting than any other glossary you've ever read. Do you want to be an entertainment writer? Learn how to become a blogging review quote machine so you'll get free tickets and videos! Sports writer? Get a nickname and a stance, and then market yourself shamelessly!
But there are always things to remember... For instance, if you're a sports writer, remember that professional bowlers should never be referred to as "heavy-set." It's assumed. If you're writing about soccer for North American audiences, remember to consider the fact that no one cares. And of course, any story on Brett Favre's retirement should end with the ;) emoticon.
What I found impressive about this book (and which was also pointed out by Roger Ebert in the forward) is that it's not a book composed solely of tweets from the authors. Too often a book based on a blog or Twitter account is just a compilation of the same material that's already been used. Fine if you don't follow them online, but a waste of money for regular readers. Write More Good borrows the attitude and style of the fakeapstylebook tweets, but that's where it ends. As such, this is an entertaining read regardless of how much you've read on Twitter.
One small caution... if you're easily offended when someone pokes fun or parodies something that is close to your heart, then you might want to stay away. Everything is fair game here... you have been warned. :)
Write More Good is one of the more entertaining books I've read of late, and I know plenty of writer colleagues who will enjoy it as much as I did. They just need to remember the warning on the cover... "If you use this, you will get FIRED!"
Thomas Duff, aka "Duffbert", is a long-time member of the Lotus community. He's primarily focused on the development side of the Notes/Domino environment, currently working for a large insurance … more
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