On Writing Well Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

William Zinsser
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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

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

2. Why is nonfiction more popular than fiction?
(a) It isn't more popular, it is just more widespread.
(b) It is more entertaining since it is true.
(c) It is what modern editors like to read.
(d) Entertainment alternatives makes nonfiction more popular, even if it is a trend.

3. Who do authors please first with their writing?
(a) Editors.
(b) Family members.
(c) Readers.
(d) Themselves.

4. What is one of Zissner's biggest pet peeves?
(a) When people say they can write a book as if it is easy.
(b) When people dog ear the pages of a book.
(c) When people leave the toilet seat up.
(d) When people write in their books.

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

Short Answer Questions

1. What should every paragraph end with?

2. What are Zissner's feelings about writing?

3. What trap do journalists and editors fall into often?

4. What is the mood or voice in a piece?

5. What happens when a writer writes in unclear ways?

Short Essay Questions

1. How much information should a writer gather before writing a piece? Why is it important?

2. What is the major problem with American writing in terms of simplicity?

3. Does Zinsser believe it is important for an author's personality to shine through his or her writing?

4. What are some examples of bad writing that has to be read?

5. Why are writers fearful to insert their own opinions, ideas, and judgments in their own writing?

6. Who does Zinsser say are the worst writers guilty of clutter?

7. Why is nonfiction now considered to be literature?

8. What becomes of a finished article that nobody reads?

9. Why are rhythm and sound important in writing? What should writers do to improve this aspect of their writing?

10. Why is it important for writers to maintain unity throughout a piece? Three things are vitally important.

(see the answer keys)

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