Monday, November 22, 2010

Why Writing is Important?

Do I need to learn how to write? What does it mean? Does it only mean I should write correctly in terms of grammar? The answer for 'only grammar' is No.

Lets go to the fundamentals, why do we write? Um... one would say, for communication. Then why do we communicate? For making others understand our viewpoint. So understanding is the most important concept.

Now, whats special with writing provided that we can talk too? The key idea is preservation of clear thoughts and that's the magic of writing. Its not important to write in perfect grammar as compared to writing clear and unambiguous(which are interpretable in one way) thoughts. Grammar is a side hero in this area but the main hero is transfer of clear thoughts.
In this article, I took grammar as a general representative of syntax (i.e., spellings, tenses etc). Some people feel that writing is about bragging their fluency in a particular language but this is one common myth.

Let me give some examples of unambiguous writing so that I can transfer my thought in a clearer way.
1- This is a sentence where a/b is true.
Ans- How do I read that? This is a sentence where a or b or both are true. Common mistake in the interpretation could be a or b (at the reader’s end or at the writer’s end or at both ends).
2- This is example: This supports the example strongly.
Ans- How do I read that? This is example and following sentence strongly supports it due to colon. Common mistake would to ignore ‘:’ by reader/writer.
3- I am writing; I am sharing myself.
Ans- How do I read that? I am writing and one reason is to share myself. Common mistake could be to ignore ‘;’ or make it strongly associated with previous sentence by reader/writer i.e., I am writing because I want to share myself.

To conclude my short post, writing is a very effective way of communication. However, it brings complications because it does not involve body language (as we have in talks). Therefore, its important to understand the idea behind this style of communication in order to avoid being mis-reported or mis-read etc. It is also an important skill for both readers and writers.

If you find this post interesting please share it with your friends. This post is both applicable for general and technical writing purposes/practices.