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Structured Resolutions (Business Writing Exercise)

We’re in the midst of a conversation about document structure, and in the first week of the new year, so let’s take this opportunity to combine two useful self-improvement exercises in one.

Business Writing Exercise

Business Writing Exercise

Have you figured out your resolutions for the new year? Do you even do that sort of thing? If so, are you in the habit of writing down your goals? If the answer to all of those is “yes,” this week’s writing exercise should be an easy one for you. I want you to write out all of your New Year’s Resolutions in document format (that is, not just a bulleted list). Instead of “weight loss,” write, “This year I’m going to lose X pounds to hit a target of Y. I’m going to do this by…” etc. Make paragraphs out of your resolutions. I don’t mean big honking English-class essay paragraphs, but two to three sentences, adding some meat to the bare-bones list of resolutions you might have scribbled on a markerboard on your fridge.

I want you to write an introduction (again, two to three sentences is fine) for anyone who doesn’t already know the assignment, explaining the purpose of the document. Then organize your list of resolutions in a logical organization (take your best guess at the meanings behind the names I listed in last week’s post: Chronological, Thematic, Parallel, Least to Greatest or Greatest to Least, and General to Specific or Specific to General). Try to write smooth transition sentences, keeping in mind your organization method when you do so.

The final document should be 250 to 750 words (or longer, if you want to include more resolutions). If you’ve got a personal blog, you could easily accomplish two tasks at once — finish your assignment for me, and then publish your goals for your friends and family. Either way, you can also share it on our discussion board.

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