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Word Up! How to Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs (And Everything You Build from Them)

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Overview

Want to write more powerfully?

You've come to the right book. "Word Up!"--an eclectic collection of essays, more inspiration guide than style guide--serves up tips and insights for anyone who wants to write with more umph.

"Word Up!"does what too few writing books do: it practices while preaching, shows while telling, uses powerful writing to talk about powerful writing.

"Word Up!" explores the perplexities and celebrates the pleasures of the English language. It leaves you ...

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Word Up! How to Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs: (And Everything You Build from Them)

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Overview

Want to write more powerfully?

You've come to the right book. "Word Up!"--an eclectic collection of essays, more inspiration guide than style guide--serves up tips and insights for anyone who wants to write with more umph.

"Word Up!"does what too few writing books do: it practices while preaching, shows while telling, uses powerful writing to talk about powerful writing.

"Word Up!" explores the perplexities and celebrates the pleasures of the English language. It leaves you smiling--and ready to conquer your next blank (or blah) page.

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  • "Word Up!" Trailer
     

What People Are Saying

Bryan A. Garner
Excellent.
—Bryan A. Garner, author of Garner's Modern American Usage, on "You Don't Know from Prepositions"
Caroline Leavitt
So entertaining that bettering your prose is almost effortless.
—Caroline Leavitt, book critic for the Boston Globe and People
Kristina Halvorson
This book embodies the adage practice what you preach. Marcia's writing style is powerful in its own way: engaging, funny, instructive, and supportive. I've longed for a book on writing to recommend ... and this is it!
—Kristina Halvorson, author of Content Strategy for the Web
Sherri Henkin
Wheaties for writing!
—Sherri Henkin, author of Growing the Write Way blog
Arthur Plotnik
Illuminating ... If some of those sharp-witted classical rhetoricians were blogging in today's idiom, they might sound like Marcia Riefer Johnston, delivering both quintessential and quirky writing tips along with charming, pointed asides. With bright style and nimble tips that even professional writers forget (or never knew), she channels the inspirations and lessons of her own writing career into a brisk giddyap for balky prose.
—Arthur Plotnik, author of Spunk & Bite
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780985820305
  • Publisher: Northwest Brainstorms Publishing
  • Publication date: 4/27/2013
  • Pages: 270
  • Sales rank: 226,262
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.57 (d)

Meet the Author

Marcia Riefer Johnston
When Marcia was twelve, "American Girl" magazine printed her eight-paragraph story, "The Key," and paid her $15. She has been writing ever since.

To share her love of writing, she has collected some one-of-a-kind essays into a book: "Word Up! How to Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs (And Everything You Build from Them)."

At Lake Forest College, she wrote one-act plays that were performed on the campus stage, learned from, and buried. She studied under Raymond Carver and Tobias Wolff in the Syracuse University creative-writing program. She taught technical writing in the Engineering School at Cornell University. She has done writing of all kinds for organizations of all kinds, from the Fortune 500 to the just plain fortunate.

Marcia has written for the scholarly journal "Shakespeare Quarterly," the professional journal "Technical Communication," the weekly newspaper "Syracuse New Times," and that user guide you used last week and didn't swear at. She used to write letters by the boxful. She has contributed posts to her daughter's Peace Corps blog, texts to her son's Droid, and answers to her husband's crossword puzzles. Her words have landed on billboards, blackboards, birthday cakes, boxes of eggs, and the back of her book. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 10, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite Word Up! - How

    Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite

    Word Up! - How to Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs (And Everything You Build from Them) by Marcia Riefer Johnston is about writing, the nuances and techniques of writing well, and how to improve your writing skills. The book tells you how to make your writing more powerful by using the right words. Every writer wants to improve their writing style and skill according to the changes happening in their language. The book tells you how to be progressive in your writing.

    Writing is a very powerful tool. Many of us write e-mails, blog posts, reviews, stories, and novels. These can be conveyed effectively to a reader with the use of right words. The book exposes readers to an effective way of writing. The instructions are engaging and interesting. The tips, guides, and insights into writing are very helpful. In spite of all the techniques about writing and English language, the author has written the book in a light-hearted manner, making it accessible to readers of all age groups.

    You feel your writing can be effortless once you finish the book. Writing has become such a powerful tool that I recommend all libraries and school libraries to purchase a few copies for reference purposes. The book shows you that there is enough scope to improve on your writing. It is a brilliant book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2013

    As a former professor I wish I had been able to assign this book

    As a former professor I wish I had been able to assign this book to my students to help them write research papers. The author's approach is not the least intimidating. She understands how rules are often more like guidelines. Her examples of how to write are exceptionally helpful. Each chapter tackles one writing issue and she nails it in 2-3 pages. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn how to write better and tighter.
    Sincerely, Ilana S. Lehmann, PhD

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2013

    This book is about writing, by an author who writes beautifully

    This book is about writing, by an author who writes beautifully herself. It deserves a space close by wherever you work. Buy this book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 11, 2013

    I am a student at Portland State University majoring in Geograph

    I am a student at Portland State University majoring in Geography. Like many people, I hope to publish a novel someday. I stumbled across Word Up! when I was at the PSU bookstore and flipped through it, reading the first few paragraphs of each chapter. I didn't even get to Part II before I said to myself, "I have to get this book!"

    It doesn't matter if you're writing a term paper, a magazine article, a technical paper, a play, a webpage, a novel, or even a letter to a dear friend, Word Up! contains hundreds of suggestions to empower you as a writer. It is well researched, you can instantly look up particular subjects in its extensive index, and it has a wonderful glossary. Actually, I Xeroxed the glossary and pinned it to the wall above my computer.

    If you want to write powerfully, this book is a must-have for your reference library.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2014

    My writing improved after each chapter. Marcia's humor is a snea

    My writing improved after each chapter. Marcia's humor is a sneaky learning technique that works! Her guidance and examples are just right!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2013

    This is a wonderful tool for writers of every kind. I am recomme

    This is a wonderful tool for writers of every kind. I am recommending it to all my friends, my college students, and my own children whom I homeschool. Writing is presented simply, clearly, and with an element of fun.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 30, 2013

    This is a must-read for anyone who writes; ok, that's all of us.

    This is a must-read for anyone who writes; ok, that's all of us. Each chapter of Word Up! taught me something essential about better writing while making me smile or even laugh out loud. Marcia writes with such an engaging style that it is hard to put the book down. I wish I had had this book in high school (or even college) English!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2013

    Exceptionally funny, clear, concise, common-sense approach to wr

    Exceptionally funny, clear, concise, common-sense approach to writing both technical and casual.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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