Sorry Orwell…

March 21, 2013 |  Tagged , | Leave a Comment

All throughout high school, writing my own pieces was always a struggle.  I was aware that I was not a very creative writer because I did not have a wide range of descriptive words in my vocabulary.  This led me to using the biggest and most complex words I knew whenever I had the chance.  I thought it made me sound smarter and would therefore make my paper seem better than it was. My teachers did not seem to care and it got me through the four easy years of my high school English classes. Then I came to college and realized that it was not that simple. There is so much more to writing then big words and familiar phrases.

My first year seminar professor saw beyond the heavy words I used to replace my simple, day to day language.  Sometimes a word I would choose did not always get put in the right place and my professor told me to stop trying to use words that are not in my everyday vocabulary unless I really need to.  She told me to just focus on the main point and worry about how it sounds later.  Like my first year seminar professor, Orwell would probably agree. In “Politics and the English Language”, Orwell says that writers should stay away from vague uses of words and instead they should be more concrete in the meaning of their writing.  I instantly knew he was talking about me.  I felt a slight sense of guilt as I read more and more examples that related to the way I write.  The guilt will hopefully help me improve my next writing assignment.


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