Edit for Style

As a rhetor (writer or speaker), when you enter a communicative situation, consider what sort of style is appropriate for your audience(s). Consider, e.g.,

  • What jargon and level of abstraction is acceptable?
  • How about humor or satire? Should you hammer down a thesis in the first sentence or lead the reader down a path to a conclusion?
  • Or, do you need to be more objective than persuasive?

In turn, when reading or listening to a rhetor, reflect on your perception of the rhetor’s style. What sort of voice do you hear?

  • Does the writer seem too self absorbed? Does the world revolve around the writer’s emotions and thoughts?
  • Does the writer sound sweet?
    • like a salesperson who uses the you attitude to place the spotlight on your needs and concerns?
  • Does the writer seem stuffy?
    • Is the focus solely on the topic without references to his/her or your experiences with the topic?