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Questions And Exercises: Chapter XIX. Business Exposition

§ 91. Write a summary of the section. It consists of seven paragraphs, each of which yon can summarize in a single sentence. Your seven sentences may be rather long, but they should conform to the requirements of Chapter X (Effective Sentences). Do not indent any of the seven sentences except the first; weave them together in one paragraph. Remember that summarizing is not merely stating a list of topics; it includes in compact form the substance of what is said about the topics. Revise carefully.

§ 92. Write an exposition of method or methods. It may be a method of manufacture or of distribution; of the organization of a business or of its conduct; of the construction of a public work or its administration; of how you get your pocket money or how you spend it. There is a great variety of business methods to choose from. Decide beforehand whether you will follow the first model in the text, or the second; that is, whether you have a selling purpose or not. Give the theme a title that will catch the eye. Revise carefully.

§ 93. Write an exposition of causes, either with or without a selling purpose. Revise carefully.

§ 94. Write an exposition of classes or kinds or varieties or branches or departments. Do not aim at a selling effect. If you are a little tired of being serious, read Charles Lamb's essay on The Two Races of Men (namely the borrowers and the lenders) and write a humorous classification .of your friends or any other body of persons.

Note. - Revise carefully! You may be getting weary of this continual iteration of "Revise carefully," but it is absolutely essential that a habit of careful revision should be so fixed in your soul as to become a second nature. Prevision and forethought are essential; revision and afterthought are equally essential. Writing is a double process. It does you no good to be revised by the instructor, if he has to correct some little error of detail over and over again. It not only wears his patience to shreds and makes him blind to your real virtues, but it cultivates in you a habit of dependence. Alas, in future days out in the cold, cold world, your faithful mentor won't be present to straighten out your spelling, put your commas where they belong, and perform those various nursery offices which are performed for literary infancy. Crede experto! That is a scrap of Latin which means, Believe one who had to learn all this by bitter experience.

§ 95. Write a definition. It may be in one paragraph or several, according to the breadth of the topic chosen. If you write on My Idea of a Gentleman, or My Idea of a Good Business Man, or My Notion of Nothing to Labor For, you may need several paragraphs. But this theme will be judged by its intelligence rather than by its length. It need have no selling appeal, but it should have something of the method of §95, 1. a, b, c, d, e. Revise as usual - if that means carefully.


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