I’ve always loved the power of language and the written word. The notion that a writer can sway the masses, swaying the masses through clear communication. Think about how Tina Fey’s clever writing and performances on SNL more precisely attuned the public magnifying glass on Sarah Palin, knocking her for a loop and out of the running. Or how the speech of Baptist minister, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., is credited with mobilizing supporters of desegregation and prompted the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
As a marketeer, I appreciate clever usage and interesting combinations of words. As a writer, I enjoy the challenge of finding the correct combination of words to get my point across. As a reader, I appreciate brevity and no-nonsense (most of the time). So listening to NPR this morning, I found a new champion of the written word: the Center for Plain Language. Had they been more prominent, perhaps the state of Florida wouldn’t have been faced with the “dimpled” chad debacle.
Throughout my career, I’ve worked as a technical writer, corporate communications writer, grantwriter, reporter, and all-around wordsmith … I like to think of myself as a “Language Artist.” So when you get a chance, listen to the story, And the Award for Convoluted Legaleese Goes To … , originally broadcast during the April 26 NPR Morning Edition. It’ll put a smile on your face.