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Archive for July 31st, 2007

When it bleeds it leads.  That’s the philosophy of the news media. For centuries, the bad news gets the spotlight – above the fold in newspapers and the first 30 seconds on television news. (Did I just say first 30 seconds? I meant all 22 minutes of TV news programming.)  We are our own worst enemies when it comes to pumping out a shit load of bleeding news stories. 

But today I had to do a double take, because making the news is the story of the Wisconsin man who has won the national “title” for bad writing.  You can read the whole story here– from a legitimate news source.

The down and dirty of the story, though, is that Jim Gleeson of Madison, Wis., won the distinctive honor (?) for his blend of awkward syntax, imminent disaster and bathroom humor that offended both good taste and the English language. He proudly beat out thousands of other prose manglers who entered San Jose State University’s 2007 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest.  He won $250 for his effort and national recognition.

Am I jealous. Ummm. No.

While this story is bleeding, it is rewarding – of all things – bad writing style. Is that something our society really needs to recognize and perpetuate?

C’mon Jim, quit with the trying to write badly already. You’re adding further embarrassment to our craft!

Editor’s Note:  Got a pet peeve that drives you insane whenever you read someone’s else’s writing or hear someone speak on television?  Blog about it here.

-end-

(c) ceg 2007

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