ERIC Number: ED232157
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Mar
Reference Count: 0
The Composing Processes of Professional Expository Writers.
Root, Robert L., Jr.
To investigate the composing processes of professional expository writers, interviews were conducted of six subjects who regularly produced expository prose under the pressure of a weekly or monthly deadline. Subjects included Noel Perrin, essayist, book critic, and Dartmouth College professor; Tom Wicker, political columnist for "The New York Times"; Walter Kerr, drama critic for "The New" magazine; Susan Nykamp, managing editor of "Photo Marketing"; and Neal Gabler, a cohost of the PBS program "Sneak Previews" and film critic for "Monthly Detroit." Each interview was recorded on cassette and conducted according to a previously prepared set of questions. In addition, the notes and drafts of at least two articles were collected. Four conclusions were drawn from the evidence and documentation: (1) writers continued to develop their abilities beyond the levels of mere proficiency or competence; (2) writers gained ability through immersion in contexts and increased familiarity with a habitual, predictable task environment; (3) writers' commitment to and proficiency with their subject depended upon the degree of their personal intellectual involvement or commitment to that subject; and (4) standards of quality in writing were flexible in the view of the writer according to exigencies and characteristics of the task environment. (HOD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (34th, Detroit, MI, March 17-19, 1983).