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. Does skipping grammar check save a writer time?
(a) No. It harms the writer, and makes more work for them and the editors.
(b) Yes. It is uneccessary since the editor can check grammer.
(c) No, they have to do line edits anyways to check grammar.
(d) Yes, it is one less thing the writer has to do.

2. What does the etymology of words mean?
(a) The biology of words.
(b) The sound of words.
(c) The written scripts.
(d) The history of words.

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

4. Who is rivaling everything that Zissner is saying?
(a) The professor of the class.
(b) Another writer.
(c) A doctor who writes for a hobby.
(d) A student in the audience.

5. What happens when the reader loses interest in the writing?
(a) She writes a bad review.
(b) He puts down the book.
(c) The transaction between author and writer is broken.
(d) She throws the book.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is the main attitude that writers have today?

2. Does Zissner believe in the journalism model for good writing?

3. What is Zinsser's preferred method for interviewing?

4. What is a strange but effective way of proofreading to check for errors?

5. What period of writing constantly used semicolons?

Short Essay Questions

1. What skills does an interviewer need to possess?

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

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

4. Who is the real audience in a piece of writing?

5. How do you know when an article is a failure?

6. Why does Zinsser advise against using exclamation points for astonishment?

7. In what point of view should a writer start writing? Why?

8. Why does Zinsser use brackets on students' papers?

9. Writers are told to study the market before submitting pieces. Why is this advice irrelevant?

10. Why does Zinsser want writers to cut out ornamental writing?

(see the answer keys)

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