Thursday, March 9, 2017

Simple English Wikipedia

How am I just now discovering this

It's a wonderful thing.  Necessary, too.  I can't tell you how many Wikipedia articles I've read and come away clueless.  There have even been times where I was already quite familiar with the subject in question, but found the article on that subject to be incomprehensible.  It's as if the authors were purposely trying to obfuscate everything.  Maybe they were, for reasons of ego or something; who knows...

I've got a pretty decent vocabulary, and I can formulate complex sentences.  But I rarely flex those muscles to their fullest extent.  The primary goal of writing--whether it's fiction or non-fiction--is to effectively communicate some idea.  The key word there is "communicate," not "lecture."  And the best way to do that is by using plain English, not SAT words and Lovecraftian sentence structure.  It's a two-way street.  You must take your reader's sensibilities into account.  Otherwise, you're just trying to show off.  And no one likes a show-off.

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