Factual vs Flowery

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"If all Keats had written had been a paragraph like this one, we would pay little attention to it, for it conveys no excitement or wonder" (Roberts 141).

            I agree with this comment; however, I am going to pick at it a little bit. First of all, it sounds as if Roberts is saying that writing is not interesting unless it is flowery. While that may be true for many forms of writing, some simply do not follow this rule. For instance, if I were to read an article in the paper about a current event, I would expect to read the facts and only the facts. Some pieces simply need to get straight to the point. However, would it be more beneficial to make the facts more interesting? Would you rather read that increasing gas prices are crushing our economy like a mudslide (lame I know) or would you rather be given straight forward facts? I don't think I would mind a simple simile like this; however, if the current event was written in one big massive metaphor or simile, I would be pretty annoyed. If an article in the paper is going to have similes or metaphors in it, I think the author should stress having a greater ratio of facts to entertaining comparisons.

            This quote also made me think about writing student research papers. I would rarely if ever use similes or metaphors in a research paper for a school assignment. I guess I might use a short, catchy phrase if anything, but nothing long and flowery. I feel like research papers need to be straight forward.  

5 Comments

Josie Rush said:

I agree with what you're saying, but I think that Roberts is referring to a very specific kind of writing here. The book doesn't really cover newswriting at all; it's more about literature and the type of writing one would like to see some metaphors and similes in. Sometimes, even in research papers, metaphors can be a good way to get your point across, I guess. But I agree that a research paper would not contain an extended metaphor every page.

Brooke Kuehn said:

I agree with you Josie. Sometimes it is nice to have a metaphor in a paper to add some creativity. I wish the book did talk more about newswriting. I do not want to be a journalist; however, it would be interesting to read about something that i do not know as much about.

Dianna Griffin said:

I am always trying to write flowery so that I sound smart! Hahaha...However, you're right. It is more beneficial with some things to just get to the point. Who wants to know how what color a person's boots are when they've robbed a house? Even when it isn't newswriting, you should still eliminate some of the more "flowery" stuff.

Brooke Kuehn said:

Dianna, I agree. Personally, i enjoy reading more flowery writing for fun, but when i have to read a news article or an editorial, i just want the facts.

Brooke Kuehn said:

Dianna, I agree. Personally, i enjoy reading more flowery writing for fun, but when i have to read a news article or an editorial, i just want the facts.

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Brooke Kuehn on Factual vs Flowery: Dianna, I agree. Personally, i
Brooke Kuehn on Factual vs Flowery: Dianna, I agree. Personally, i
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