On Writing Well Quiz | Four Week Quiz A

William Zinsser
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This quiz consists of 5 multiple choice and 5 short answer questions through Part I: Chapter 7 Usage.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What is another important characteristic of a writer?
(a) To sound out simple sentences.
(b) To be aware of the rhythm and sound of words together.
(c) To sound out simple syllables.
(d) To be aware of the way words are spelled.

2. What does reading aloud do for the writer?
(a) It helps the writer compare their work to others.
(b) It is a therapeutic process signifying the end of a story.
(c) Catches simple mistakes and clumsy constructions.
(d) It allows writers to understand their own writing.

3. Can a writer's style be affected to the reader?
(a) No, it has to be manipulated.
(b) Yes, so long as the writing is really dense.
(c) Yes, so long as the writing is filled with rich prose.
(d) No, it has to be genuine.

4. How rigid are the lines between proper and improper English usage?
(a) They are very rigid and one cannot cross the line.
(b) They are very soft, and not rigid at all.
(c) There are no lines at all. Every writer has a poetic license to do with words what he or she pleases.
(d) There is a grey area, though the need for proper English is most important.

5. What does Zinsser do before submitting a piece of writing?
(a) He submits his writing to his family.
(b) He reads everything aloud.
(c) He edits everything three times.
(d) He has his wife read his work.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does a Thesaurus help a writer with, besides finding alternate words?

2. What is an example of a time when bad writing HAS to be read?

3. Why is the English language changing all the time?

4. When can ornamental writing be used as an exception?

5. What is the problem with American writing?

(see the answer key)

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