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Storytelling vs. Column and Essay Writing

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by brandonsneed, Sep 10, 2012.

  1. brandonsneed

    brandonsneed Member

    Something I'm curious what other people think: How essential is it for writers to be proficient at not just storytelling, but also column and essay writing?
  2. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    You don't have to be great at everything--no one is. Find that one thing you do the best, and do the hell out of it.

    But you should at least be proficient in other areas, just for the exercise and experience.
  3. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    It's important to be good at what you do now, what you want to do in the future and what you realistically might be asked to do in the future. If you're confident you'll never be a columnist (or a copy editor, or an essayist, or a beat reporter, or a long-form writer), then it's no sweat off your back that you're not very good at writing columns (or copy editing, or essay writing, or beat reporting, or long-form writing).
  4. TheHacker

    TheHacker Member

    I find that a lot of writers -- especially the 20-somethings who have grown up reading BLOGS! all their life -- have a tendency to write everything as though it's an essay. Sometimes it works. It depends on the topic. Most of the time it doesn't. I think you have to develop your writing chops as a reporter before you try turning everything into a big-picture perspective piece. Again, that's especially true for less-experienced writers. You need to see the big picture and gain a perspective before you can write with one.

    YGBFKM Guest

    Whatever the style, not everything is important. The world needs more humor writers.
  6. BobSacamano

    BobSacamano Member

    That's about right. Because of my work, I see a lot of submissions from college-age applicants and their content is always written like book reports. Furthermore and therefore, and however, and as a result of, and in conclusion. The writing just isn't refined.
  7. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member

    Younger writers struggle with brevity and subtlety.

    Older writers struggle with using too many one-liners and a general lack of vigor in their work.

    The best writers know: They're still writers. The words have to mean something. Not just the subject or the story or the big-picture theme or the moral. The words.
  8. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    Everyone loves generalizations.
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