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#15--WELL-CONSTRUCTED NON-FICTION

These lessons, by one of our most consistent FaithWriters' Challenge Champions, should not be missed. So we're making a permanent home for them here.

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Postby glorybee » Sat Jun 19, 2010 9:55 pm

Hey, sorry it took me so long to get back to you. We were away at a funeral and a wedding, and just now got back home.

I see now where you were going--well done!
Jan Ackerson

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One Paragraph

Postby WriterFearNot » Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:29 pm

Here's one paragraph, plus a little more, on 'Freedom.'

Freedom

In the 2009 movie Old Dogs, Dan Rayburn—played by Robin Williams—engages in a night of wild abandon in an attempt to recover from his recent divorce. He wakes up the following morning with the word ‘Freemont’ tattooed across his chest. “It was supposed to say Freedom,” explained Dan’s best friend Charlie, played by John Travolta. For the rest of his life, Dan will have to explain how an unfortunate language barrier resulted in the tattoo Freemont branded across his chest instead of the word Freedom.

This scene threw me into a fit of laughter because it reminded me of the many times I’ve tried to gain freedom through mere human effort. Then, I grew somber, as I thought of a passage:

When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? ~Romans 6:20-21

[Here, I would add two personal examples showing the human struggle with freedom. And I would end with the argument: only when bound in the mind of Christ, encased in the love of Him, can we be truly free. And, if I was clever enough I would bundle that argument within the conclusion with the beginning anecdote].

WFN :idea:

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Postby glorybee » Mon Jun 21, 2010 4:57 pm

Very well done, WFN! You get the gold star for this lesson, for incorporating the most 'tips'. Woo hoo!
Jan Ackerson

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woohoo

Postby WriterFearNot » Mon Jun 21, 2010 6:46 pm

Why, thank you!

WFN :D

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Postby grandmalovesbabies » Mon Jun 21, 2010 7:10 pm

A word I hear often (and surprisingly read often as well) is irregardless in place of regardless.
In the twilight of my years, may His Light shine more brightly.

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Postby grandmalovesbabies » Mon Jun 21, 2010 7:32 pm

Here is another word misquoted - accordian instead of accordion. And with that, here is my non-fiction paragraph:


I admit, with some hesitation, I am a closet accordion player. To the bane of numerous dogs and neighbors, I like to pound out a good tune now and then. The accordion is a controversial instrument and the beauty is in the eyes (or should I say “ears”) of the beholder. Even the history of this lively instrument is steeped in controversy. To my delight, the Handaoline was patented by Buschmann Friedrich in Berlin in 1822. This prototype works similar to the modern-day accordion. However, Cyril Demian penned the name “accordion” and had his model patented in Vienna in 1829. Regardless of which man gets the credit, I take great delight in the sounds and harmonies of my accordion. Polka, anyone?
In the twilight of my years, may His Light shine more brightly.

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Postby glorybee » Mon Jun 21, 2010 8:07 pm

Lollie, I'm one of those people who can't STAND an accordion--but you made it sound both fascinating and fun--very well done! You gave what could have been very 'report-like' a personal touch, with a nice mixture of humor and information.

Great job!
Jan Ackerson

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Postby DanielK » Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:11 am

Wow, I haven't been here for ages! Life's been a bit hectic at home. Anyway, now I'm back I'd better get to it.

Non-fiction really isn't my thing, but I'll give it a go. I'll do the musical instrument.

Clap, tap, slap, boom, wham, click, pound. Since the dawn of time birds, beasts, and probably men have been making noise by bashing things. To show joy, in mating rituals, or just to have some fun, animals all over the world bang the drums. For some reason you rarely see a giraffe playing the cello, or a chicken blowing a trumpet. Drumming is clearly more popular. Beginning with banging on hollow logs, mankind has improved the art of drumming such that we can almost play tunes on the drums. We have perfected the sounds and rhythms, trained up master drummers, and paid them huge amounts of cash to do what woodpeckers do by instinct. I think that the reason is simple: we humans are as fond of making noise as any other creature.

There, I actually enjoyed that! Probably because I'm a drummer. I know I love making noise!

Daniel

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Postby glorybee » Wed Sep 01, 2010 11:02 am

Daniel, I thoroughly enjoyed that, and the way you infused it with humor and our own personality.

My only suggestion would be to put the onomatopoeia in the first sentence in italics--I just think it works better that way.
Jan Ackerson

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Is it too late to reply to this?

Postby puregrace7 » Sun Jan 09, 2011 4:32 pm

I'm a brand-newbie and am familiarizing myself with this awesome site! I'm excited, anxious to jump right in with both feet but, alas, I'm mostly a lurker. Yep, I lurk.

But I also write. I wanted to add my paragraph to this homework, even though it is a rather old assignment. It's new to me!

A paragraph on musical instruments:


God knew what He was doing. The Bible says that God fashioned his days for him and formed him in the womb. But he was completely and hopelessly tone deaf. Couldn't carry a tune in a handbasket. However, he did have a full heart for God. Sometimes, in church, he would get caught up in the spirit of praise and his deep, booming southern drawl-of-a-voice would burst out from his "instrument of praise" and all those around him would hear nothing but pure worship - totally off key - but very pure. And to God, it was a sweet, sweet sound of perfection.

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Postby glorybee » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:59 am

PUregrace, thanks for stopping by! I take all late assignments, and I don't even dock your grade.

You've done a lovely job of writing a compelling paragraph. I can really 'see' this fellow (and hear him!), and even more important, I can hear your writer's voice.

The only thing I'd caution you to be careful of is the use of cliches--'couldn't carry a tune in a handbasket'. A writer as talented as you should be aware of those sorts of phrases, and should replace them with fresher imagery.

I'm delighted to have you here, and I hope that you'll emerge from your lurking more and more! Have you entered the Writing Challenge yet? If not, what are you waiting for?
Jan Ackerson

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Thank you

Postby puregrace7 » Mon Jan 10, 2011 5:44 pm

First off, I want you to know I visited your blog and wailed with laughter at your escapades with Pippie! I could totally relate but, obviously, you are one of those people who can take a mundane trip and make it absolutely hilarious! Not that a trip with a grandchild can ever be mundane. But thank you for that. It was a welcomed delight to my day.

Also, thank you so much for your encouraging comments and the gentle slap on the hand. They meant a lot to me. I do have a question, however. Please understand this is a question and not a subtle aim at an excuse. If I had put the 'cliche' like this: "Couldn't carry a tune in a handbasket," as the saying goes. Would it have been acceptable?

I must admit I am trying to break the lurking habit. I'll work on it. Maybe there's an online support group I could audit :lol:

Puregrace7 aka Karen

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Postby glorybee » Mon Jan 10, 2011 8:46 pm

Oh heck, Karen, that wasn't a slap on the hand, not even a gentle one. You're a terrific writer. Think of it as a nudge.

Putting quotes around the phrase or using "as the saying goes" would just call attention to it, in my opinion. I really, really encourage writers to do away with them altogether, as much as possible. There are times when nothing else will do--in that case, go for it. In your example, there's certainly a way of describing this man's voice that hasn't been used before.

His singing sent coyotes whimpering into their dens.

His voice skittered from low notes to high ones like a rusty cart on an old roller coaster.


I dunno...something like that.
Jan Ackerson

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Ok, gotcha

Postby puregrace7 » Mon Jan 10, 2011 9:30 pm

Thanks for the input. I appreciate it. So now I can go back over all the stuff I've written and check for cliches. :D

BTW we just moved from Michigan a couple of years ago.We do love Tennessee.

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