Ex 5: Richly Linked Blog Entry, Chapter 11, Genre Writing

| 1 Comment

Chapter eleven talks about the importance of knowing your audience and how it’s especially important in genre writing because, like Tiffany Gilbert said, the audience created the genre. It defines a genre and gives the advantages of writing within a genre. Erin Waite recommends that you have a helpful website and use the appropriate terminology when talking to your audience.

“But to make all this assembling, searching, reusing, customizing, and personalizing go smoothly, you, as the writer, must work within the confines of a genre.” Genre writing sounds very… organized. I can get on board with that.

“Each genre comes with a few standard personas, a cast list of potential roles for you to play,” says Price and Price's Hot Text. “Generally, we consider creating a writing persona as a little dishonest, almost like putting on a mask,” says WebWritingThatWorks.com. It also sounds false. Organized, yet deceitful.

Rachel Prichard mentions her confusion with being told to be professional as well as “gonzo.” She also says that “twisting” a genre convention doesn’t make much sense. By “twisting” genre, I think they mean that it’s okay to throw in something unexpected sometimes. They say to follow the conventions, but to not be afraid of being unconventional?

“Yes, you must invent some kind of persona on your own side, to figure out how to talk to the individuals in your audience, whom you may have caricatured in a set of fictional personas,” WebWritingThatWorks.com. This is a lot like what is required of students and professors in proper e-mail etiquette. Moving effortlessly between roles of formality and informality in e-mail etiquette is similar to the difference between how you talk to your audience and how you would talk to your family or friends.

Picking up different personas, playing different parts, morphing into what it required of you: sounds a lot like life. The only thing that really kills my interest (and buries it and gives it a really nice funeral) is all the emphasis on conventional structure. “If you were creating a diagram of a generic procedure, you might draw a nested hierarchy, indicating which elements were optional, and which were required and in what order…” Wow. Thanks Hot Text, I’ve just hurled myself out the window. You really know how to kill anyone’s desire to write anything ever, you evil SOB.

The only thing worse than reading about the mechanics of writing, is writing about the mechanics of writing. Lists are one thing, but diagrams and procedures are just suffocating. Lori Rupert breaks it down much clearer: "Wouldn't a genre then be simply writing for your audience? Which Price has taught us how to do for several chapters now."

1 Comment

I don't think there's an author in existence who could really kill your desire to write, Kayla.

Conventions are useful as benchmarks, and they're good footholds for those who are still learning. But conventions are also useful for those who excel, because without conventions, how would we ever be able to praise the truly great for being so darned unconventional?

Leave a comment

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by published on October 11, 2006 8:03 PM.

14, 15, 16, Price and Price, Hot Text was the previous entry in this blog.

Portfolio 1 is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.