On Writing Well Test | Mid-Book Test - Easy

William Zinsser
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This test consists of 15 multiple choice questions and 5 short answer questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What should the lead in the first sentence do for a reader?
(a) It should introduce the article informatively and let the reader know it will be a good read.
(b) It should tell the reader very little about the article, so he or she will continue reading.
(c) It should be very basic to hook in all types of readers.
(d) It should capture the reader and force him or her to keep reading.

2. What is the main thing required to being a good writer?
(a) All answers are correct.
(b) Hard work.
(c) Good editing.
(d) Passion.

3. What method of writing does Zissner use?
(a) New Journalism.
(b) Old Journalism.
(c) Cluster writing.
(d) Bold paragraph approach.

4. When can ornamental writing be used as an exception?
(a) When the wrting needs extra fluff.
(b) When writing evaluations and resumes.
(c) To follow solid writing.
(d) When the author needs to abide by editors remarks.

5. What are some limitations of perfect grammar?
(a) Good grammer makes for boring writing.
(b) Hindering points, establishing author moods, and painting word pictures.
(c) Lack of expressionism when grammar is perfect.
(d) Some writers don't have perfect grammar and therefore cannot get published.

6. What tense does Zissner recommend when starting a new piece?
(a) Third person.
(b) Combination third and first.
(c) Second person.
(d) First person.

7. What is a natural inclination for writers when they start a piece?
(a) They assume the readers know what they are writing about.
(b) They don't give enough background information.
(c) Writers assume readers know nothing about what they are writing about.
(d) They ramble through an unnecessary introduction.

8. What is Zissner's point of view on the debate between literature and journalism?
(a) He agrees that literature is the only true form of good writing.
(b) He wants to go back to the pre-WWII form of writing.
(c) He agrees that journalism is bad writing.
(d) He believes it doesn't matter, and that good writing is good writing.

9. Do good writers decorate their writing?
(a) No, only bad writers do this to sell more copies.
(b) No, good writers dont need ornamentation.
(c) Yes, always with lots of extra words.
(d) Yes, with good punctuation.

10. Why is it important for writers to read constantly?
(a) To study the market.
(b) To emulate their heroes.
(c) To learn from other writers' mistakes.
(d) To learn how to write.

11. What does Zissner say is a common desire of every writer?
(a) To mae sure grammar is perfect.
(b) To pay perfect attention to detail.
(c) To take the long route to everything.
(d) To find shortcuts.

12. What other group of people uses euphemisms or fad terms?
(a) Musicians.
(b) Business writers.
(c) State employees.
(d) Doctors.

13. Can good writing be taught?
(a) Only good students can learn good writing.
(b) Only good teachers can teach good writing.
(c) Of course it can.
(d) It cannot, but it can be learned.

14. What is the purpose of colons?
(a) They can be used to separate a sentance and start another without having to capitalize the first word.
(b) They are good to use in place of quotations for dialogue.
(c) Colons are used to explain sentences.
(d) To start out a list of things without using list form.

15. Why is consistency in verb tense so important?
(a) It is important for slower readers to follow along.
(b) It is important for the development of characters, and to set up a plot.
(c) It is important so that verbs don't get confused with nouns.
(d) Very tense consistency is important so that the reader does not become lost in the timing of events.

Short Answer Questions

1. Why does the doctor write?

2. What period of writing constantly used semicolons?

3. Who is the author talking to at the beginning of the book?

4. Why does he recommend starting in the preferred tense?

5. Why should interview questions be written before the interview?

(see the answer keys)

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