Daily Productive Sharing 353

Daily Productive Sharing 353
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What is a good essay? Paul Graham gives his definition:

  1. Good writing should be convincing, certainly, but it should be convincing because you got the right answers, not because you did a good job of arguing.
  2. An essay doesn't begin with a statement, but with a question. You notice a door that's ajar, and you open it and walk in to see what's inside.
  3. Just as inviting people over forces you to clean up your apartment, writing something that other people will read forces you to think well.
  4. An essay you publish ought to tell the reader something he didn't already know.
  5. The river's algorithm is simple. At each step, flow down. For the essayist this translates to: flow interesting. Of all the places to go next, choose the most interesting.
  6. Essays should aim for maximum surprise.
  7. If there's one piece of advice I would give about writing essays, it would be: don't do as you're told. Don't believe what you're supposed to. Don't write the essay readers expect; one learns nothing from what one expects. And don't write the way they taught you to in school.

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Paul Graham 介绍了什么样的文章才是好文章:

  1. 好的文章应该有说服力,是因为你在写作中得到了正确答案,而不是因为论证工作做得好。
  2. 一篇文章以问题开始。就像你注意到一扇门是虚掩着的,然后你打开它,走进去看看里面有什么。
  3. 就像邀请别人来家里做客迫使你打扫你的公寓一样,写一些别人会读的东西也会迫使你好好思考。
  4. 你写的文章应该告诉读者一些他还不知道的东西。
  5. 对于河流而言,每一步都要往下流。对于写作而言,类似地,要挖掘有趣的话题。在所有下一步要去的地方中,选择最有趣的地方。
  6. 文章应该以最大的惊喜为目标。
  7. 如果有一个关于写文章的建议,那就是:不要按照别人说的做。不要相信你应该相信的东西。不要写读者所期望的文章;人们从期望的东西中什么也学不到。也不要按照他们在学校里教你的方式来写。

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