Isabella Rhodes’ letter to Joanna Nadin

Here’s Joanna’s reply.
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Joanna Nadin’s reply to Isabella Rhodes
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Lovely.

Joanna regularly talks to pupils in primary schools, and it was on the TES website where she mentioned a thing the schools have — “wow words.”

“Instead of saying something’s ‘big’, you say it’s ‘gargantuan’. Instead of saying something’s ‘good’, you say it’s ‘magnificent’.

“Obviously, there are times when this is appropriate. [But] there are times when it makes your writing read like it’s been fed through a thesaurus machine.

“I spend all my time taking wow words out of students’ writing, because they’re ugly most of the time. It’s a focus on the rules, rather than on the story.”

And on that note, here’s a relevant piece by writer Anne Rooney on the enforcement of wow words — a topic in The Guardian last year.

Writing this post reminded me of Ken Robinson’s brilliant TED talk from 2006 that asked, Do schools kill creativity? Well worth (re)watching.

Via @inkcopywriters.