Verbing weirds language19 October, 2009
The Temple Spa, in the middle of Ireland, is a haven of peace and quiet, a welcome respite from the stresses of the real world…
… that is, until a dozen Lero students turn up, with Windows error chimes and tangles of laptop power cables and arguments about science versus engineering, for a Writers’ Workshop run by David A. Grier*.
The workshop was excellent, focussing not on grammar rules but on refactoring our writing until it couldn’t be any clearer. David tangented from nominalisation to American literature (via transatlantic issues***) to cookies; much was learned and much fun was had. I’d recommend the style book we used as well; it’s short, it has lots of examples, and it has diagrams. Mmm diagrams. I conclude that technical writing is a tool for debugging your own thoughts as well as communicating with others**. So now I have a new toy to play with 😀
As for the venue… well, it was a spa. So there was floaty hypnotic music, and everything was beige, and after a few hours your brain turns to beige mush. I’m told that this is supposed to be relaxing, but I find it rather alarming 😮
* not to be confused with David A. Grier
** This is unlikely to have any effect on the quality of this blog, mind. Excessive footnotes, emoticon-punctuation and mix’n’match tenses are probably here to stay. Sorry 😉
*** “I hate all your keyboards!”