Writing Assignment: Rewrite This # 3

by Randy Murray on August 31, 2012

Writing isn’t necessarily the glorious and wildly creative activity that many imagine it to be. A big part of the writing life is rewriting. If you don’t rewrite your own work, polish it, it’s likely that it’s not any good at all.

But here’s a big secret: it’s very easy, too easy, to rewrite someone else’s work. There’s a difference between editing and rewriting. Editing corrects and helps to clarify (or points out when something isn’t working). Rewriting is the next level that does the work of fixing the things that don’t work.

If you hand me a piece and ask me to take a look at it, I’ll give it back to you bleeding red ink with corrections and comments. I can’t help it. But I expect nothing less from you. I tell my clients, “If you send me back the copy and it isn’t marked up, I’ll know that you didn’t read it.”

It’s not an insult to edit and rework someone else’s writing, especially if it needs the work. That’s how a writer learns. Both the writer and the editor benefits from the experience.

For today’s assignment, rewrite two separate pieces, one of your own and this linked article from the Weekly World News on how Toy Story 4 will be R rated.

For the news article, remove the obvious lies, but feel free to punch up the speculation on what an R rated Toy Story movie would be like.

For your own piece, approach it from the same perspective. What is unclear? Did you convey what you wanted? What more could you do to make this piece better?

For bonus points, rewrite one of my Writing Assignments and post it here in the comments!

Click here to view and complete previous writing assignments.

And buy a copy of the Writing Assignments book!

The Writing Assignment: Rewrite This # 3 by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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