Writing and Publishing

Creative Formatting is Not Creative Writing

All too often I see people who seem to think “creative writing” is embellishing their words using bold, underline, and italics—for various combinations thereof.

They also like to further emphasize words by TYPING IN UPPER CASE.

Then there is abusive punctuation, such as using ellipses…needlessly…avoiding the chore of completing sentences or thoughts.

Or how about mixing question marks and exclamation points at the end of sentences!?!? What’s the deal with that?!?!

Lastly is the excessive use of exclamation points! This occurs at every conceivable opportunity! The abuse of them is common with novice writers! And their use in succession defies common sense!!!!!!

While each of these examples may be appropriate in the rarest of occasions they are almost never expressions of creative writing. They are merely creative formatting in order to cover up a lack of creative wording.

Creative writing is about the words we use, not how we format them.

By Peter Lyle DeHaan

Author Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, publishes books about business, customer service, the call center industry, and business and writing.

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