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Why You Should Read Anything That Is Badly Written Too



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Why You Should Read Anything That Is Badly Written Too

Readers can't stand bad writing but writers shouldn't place a badly written book back on the shelf that fast. There is a lot one can learn from anything that is badly written.

How is it that you immediately notice that what you are reading is poorly written? As a writer and critic try to objectively analyze what you are reading. Why is it not as effective as the writer intended it to be? Why does it fail to achieve the purpose for which it is written? The answers you obtain from this exercise will force you to look out for and avoid such mistakes when you are writing. Won't that make you a better writer?

Comments

HappyLady

I agree. It is always good to think "what stopped me from reading that?" One thing that puts me off from the start if the formatting is off. This advice you give is sensible. There is always a reason why we do not want to read further.



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Martinsx1

When it's obvious fact that an article is a complete trash, there is no need wasting one's precious time trying to read it up when there would nothing better to benefit from completing reading the content. When there are better written articles, why waste my time on poor, error filled ones.



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Jeane

Formating certainly can drive away readers. No matter how well-written something is, if the formatting makes it hard to read, then you will most obviously lose your reader long before they even start reading.

When creating content for net consumption, mistakes like this should be avoided or corrected quickly but most bloggers fail to realize that formatting they feel is "cool" may not be perceived to be that "cool" by their site visitors.

What galls me most? Any text color other black on any background other than white.



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Steve5

That right there. I also experienced reading colored text with a different background. It was very unpleasant. What you've said is true. No matter how amazing the writing, we won't be able to enjoy it if the format is disastrous.



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Steve5

Me too. That's why I usually read books in epub format. They're much easier to read that way. I find it difficult to read PDF files. It's just not something I'd consider. Especially, if it's a novel.



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Kakashi2020

It really depends on the reader. But in my opinion, reading bad content even though I know it's bad, is not good. Why would o waste my time reading crap? If the answer is to learn what bad writing is, then how did I learn that the article is crap in the first place? It's illogical.



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slugsinthai

I agree with you! It's good to not only focus on writers that are exceptional, it helps to see examples of writing that is uncomfortable for you to read. The sentence structure, prose, themes, plot development and language can all help guide your own writing. I know how difficult it is to get through writing that is 'bad', and I rarely can manage more than a few pages, but it is a good idea to check them out for the sake of self improvement. I also do this with my own past works, works that I am not proud of and would prefer to disappear forever haha. Your own poor writing can give you great insights as well.



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allyn2017

Yes, sometimes it is really good to read a book with many errors, to learn from them.



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Youngshark

Where else will you find the opportunity to act as a critic and truly know how something can be done better if you fail to take advantage of such opportunities. I value the power of learning from mistakes and the more the errors the more the lessons.



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jaybee19

True. It's actually harder to learn from the right/perfectly done things compared to the wrong ones. Although I'm not saying everyone should act stupid/make mistakes just to learn. It's just that for me, when you are fully aware about the wrong things, it is easier for you to change them and be able to apply them as an inspiration to avoid doing them. I actually live in an almost perfect environment and to tell you honestly, it's too annoying to judge each and every mistake that others do while I'm unaware about my mistakes because I thought I was brought up on the right directions (although yes I am, it's just that it makes me kind of unaware of my mistakes/ignorant about it before) and so I guess I should also learn from the mistakes and not just the correct ones which could be connected with write-ups as well.



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Jeane

There is one book I read that was so poorly written that I couldn't read it all. It was full of run-on sentences, spelling mistakes and lots of other errors. The fact that I knew the writer was a native English speaker didn't help. She could do a lot better than that but didn't even try.

At least the one thing I learned from this book was: one should never publish their first drafts. Ever.



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Youngshark

You can actually make some corrections as you read along and improve your own writing skills and if you are a proofreader and editor then that can be some mere practice for you. Funny one about your own poor writing being the mirror.



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slugsinthai

I didn't even think of proofreading the bad pieces, that's an even better idea.



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Youngshark

Ooh yeaah you can catch a lot of mistakes and by the time you are done you will be so much better as a proofreader. I actually do not have a problem with this since it makes me even sharper.



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Kakashi2020

I agree that reading a poorly written book can teach you the donts of writing but you don't have to read a lot of them. One or two books would do and after that it's best to stay away from such books.



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Kakashi2020

That would work best for Newbies and Beginners. But for seasoned writers that wouldn't make much difference, more so for those who've undergone trainings in creative writing.

Whenever I see a badly written article or book, I would put it down or in case of digital media like blogs, I would simply stop reading and start looking for something good to read.



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coolavender

If you can judge a book to be badly written, that means you already have a standard for what is well written. I usually don't waste my time reading poorly written materials much less dissecting what made them so. I said usually because there was a time when I had to read a programming book written in a very unconventional way by an unknown but technically savvy author. It lacked the refinement one usually finds in most programming books but his book provided compelling content that I would otherwise have to spend a lot of time and money to learn elsewhere.



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theresajane

This is a great realization. We would normally disregard a poorly-written book or piece, but I think you are right that it may help us too. With the mistakes that you can point out from that specific written work, you'll learn what to do and what not to do the next time you write your own book, article and others. That is a great insight, thank you.



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Barida

It is a good wayor us to learn as writers. The reason is that by so doing, you will end up learning a thing or two on how to become a nice writer as well. Discovering those mistakes means that we can easily avoid making them when we write.



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stbrians

Honestly any badly written content is the better teacher than a high powered one. You wi be able to know why you classify it as bad. Reading it wi reveal why you term it as bad.
The best written one will grip you that it will be hard for you to breath. It will be hard to learn its mistakes.



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focusedwriter10

Although the badly written content is a turn-off to most readers, especially experienced writers, there is so much to learn from such reads.

Anyone who wants to learn and improve his or her writing should read content that is well written, as well as the badly written content. This is the only way you gauge your writing and learn from the mistakes of other writers. For me, this has helped me learn more on what I should avoid, and what readers expect.



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Barida

I always try to read every content that I across. One good thing about doing so is you tend to learn on the good ones as well as try to avoid the ones that may not be giving you the necessary things that you wish to add in your contents when you write. Writing is a continuous process where we keep learning on things that will make us better.



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nrnlss

It's true, sometimes you can learn from other people's mistakes.



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jpk0007

Yes, that is very true. One can learn from the mistakes that others commit in there work and avoid making those mistakes in your own work. But sometimes we come across work that is total crap. If you read such work for a long time you may probably get a headache realising how much things can go wrong and you often wonder that how can that person not realise that his work has so many flaws. I think reading such work can be a good way to increase your patience and tolerance.



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nrnlss

I agree with you, there are times that no matter how good the message and story line is, we get distracted and discourage by the high amount of grammar error and typos.



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amelia88

I think this is such a good point. Sure, it's helpful to read really well written stuff, and I find it's a good way to get pointers about how I can do things better - but the same can be said about badly written stuff. Helping to identify why something is badly written often means that I won't make those same errors when I write, and it can be a really useful learning tool.



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nrnlss

I agree with you, sometimes there are also book that has bad grammar but really great story.



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theresajane

I agree with you. We learn in different ways. We may even learn and build our writing skills through finding faults from someone else's work too. There may be times that it is our own work that is badly written. Thus, we have to read and understand, and go over with what needs improvement.



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Corzhens

I always read only the good books and when it is badly written I don't continue especially when I couldn't clearly understand what I am reading. Pardon me for this contrary opinion but for me it is a waste of time to read badly written articles because there is the risk that I might acquire the style and that later on it would reflect on my writing. It is best to read well written articles where I can learn a better style and clearer manner of writing.



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nrnlss

I feel you, but you still have to try. I used to thinj the same, and I get distracted with the grammar error sometimes.



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amelia88

I usually find that reading badly written stuff helps me more easily identify those problems in my own writing. It's like shining a magnifying glass on my own work, by finding things in other people's writing that doesn't make sense, or is grammatically incorrect.

I think it works great as a learning tool!



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cks003

A writer has to be always looking for something interesting that can engage the interest of the public. This includes bad contents or writings that are badly written. As we are always standing on the shoulders of giant, that badly written piece may be an inspiration or idea for us to correct it and build on.



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nrnlss

I agree with you, I have read a book called McGregor, it was an indie book that has a lot of grammar error, but the content and the plot, also the message of the story is really strong.



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allyn2017

I've read that book and I agree with you, it has a really great message.



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ajahcuizon

I agree that badly written content might be a good ppace to start with. Since we are not sure if the message was even successfully transmitted, some people could use it as a starting base ang create their oen content with that basis.



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allyn2017

I've read a lot of books that has a really bad grammar but really good story.



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Jeane

The only poorly written book that I've read from cover to cover is "ENGLISH AS SHE IS SPOKE." And that is because it was really funny. Sure the book's real purpose was different but it turned out that while it didn't quite achieve (that purpose) it will be forever one of the most (unintentionally) hilarious books ever written.

I'm sure though there are some books written by writers who may not express themselves that well because they haven't fully mastered the language they are using.

When a writer doubts their ability to write well in a foreign language it is better to write in the language you fully comprehend and have whatever it is you've written translated.



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jayjaydimson

Well, practice makes perfect, if you are writing stuff, you will perfect it as time goes by, because it takes time.



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emiaj55

This is very true. An average person could tell if they like what they were reading or not. But Only a few could pinpoint why. A poorly written article may offer you a reflection on how you would want your own articles to be presented. More over, there are often a lot of valuable points, arguments and ideas that could be found on a poorly written articles. The only problem was it may be hiding under a heap of grammatical errors or a way of writing that you do not really prefer. Maybe the writer had a hard time in thinking how to present his ideas. But if you would dwell more into his writing then maybe you"d find that he has a point.



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Martinsx1

I must admit that it's very boring trying to read anything whether new articles or comments that are badly written. Seriously, it aches my eyes and gives me headaches but I always try to make an exception every once in a while especially if I notice that the writer hava a good point, but only that he or she lacks how to present them.



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jaymish3

On the internet there is so much to read. I've developed this habit of deciding if I want to read something based on the first paragraph. If I read the first paragraph, and I realise it is the end of my journey the work is badly written, this is the end of my journey,with that particular article or blog. There's just too much to read, to spend time on something that's badly written. There's nothing you learnt from a badly written article, in fact you may just want to adopt the bad habit in the form of bad sentence structure, poor grammar and punctuation.



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ajahcuizon

Eventhough a content was badly written, what's important is its message especially if can benefit us. Also, it may help you to challenge your mind while reading that you are reading and checking for its grammar simultaneously. It might have poor grammar, as long as the message could be delivered and understood, it may be enough but they should still improve their grammar.



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jaybee19

What a great insight. I am actually one of those individuals who doesn't even bother to read books/articles that are poorly written. However, because of this, I might try and convince myself to read books that are poorly written as well even tho I can't stand reading them. I think what you stated here is right, and I guess that's the reason why we also need to acknowledge negative criticisms so that we will be able to know our mistakes especially that as humans, we are born to neglect our mistakes while we always acknowledge the right things we have done and take pride on it.



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Jeane

I guess that's the reason why we also need to acknowledge negative criticisms

I've been on a few writers forums. Anyone who wants what they've written reviewed can submit an excerpt and wait . . .

Many writers who receive negative reviews often get all defensive. They try to explain why they did A,B or C. But you see others notice they didn't get it right. Reviewers who find a mistake in any writing will probably not make mistakes like those anymore lest they be accused of preaching water whilst drinking wine. It's the same way someone can a lot if they read books that are poorly written occasionally.



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cmoneyspinner

Believe it or not, I am a member of a forum and right now the owner is asking for people to re-write certain discussions. He wants to improve the quality of the content at the site. He's paying the members who take on this task.



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mdayrit

I find it hard to finish reading a content that is badly written. I think that it is the first sign that content is not good. You won't be able to reach the part of correcting errors in it if what you want to do is just put it down on the first few pages. But I agree with you that it can be a good way for writers to learn and prevent committing the same mistakes to be able to produce a good content.



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hstinscdln

It makes sense reading something that is badly written. Through that, you'll get to know yourself more. As you see the mistakes in that work, you'll also be able to reflect on your mistakes and find where and how you should improve. You'll also be a better writer as you read badly written books, rather than just reading well-written books.



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DenisP

I definitely agree that reading poorly written content can help you improve as a writer.

I think that we all inherently have a feel for what is good or bad writing. You don’t have to be a professional writer and technically disassemble a piece of work to know that it sucks—you just feel it. And when you feel that something is poorly written, you can take a moment to pause and analyze why you feel that way.

Once you're mindful of why, then you yourself can learn to avoid making the same mistakes.



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jayjaydimson

You should so that you will know what the bad writing is, and so that you can avoid making one.



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MomoStarr16

Yes just like a warning. You will always remember those bad ones you read once you feel you are writing one. Then you can change it to avoid that bad thing.



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tophgreg

If you already know that the article is bad, still give it your time because there you can pin point the mistakes in that article. It is important to be able not only to tell if it is a bad article in general but also the flaws with in the writing style of the article. Another is that when you have pinpointed the mistakes in that article you can give your critique on that title and to its author, though it might seem a little odd to just give your criticism, it is a huge help to the author/journalist of the bad article for he/she can improve his/her works. That is all Why You Should Read Anything That Is Badly Written Too



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astraherondale

I agree. Writers should also read poorly-written books so they could take not of what exactly to avoid. Who knows, they might unknowingly be committing the same sins in their books but are unable to recognize them.



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Steve5

There are many reasons for that. One of the biggest issues is how it's interpreted. Like when writing Horror unintentionally turns into Comedy. Writing is a very subtle art. One wrong choice of words can end up costing you the entire paragraph or more.

And with writing, everything needs to be necessary. Bad writing is commonly filled with extraneous words and poor grammar.



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MomoStarr16

Why you should read one of poorly written one? Because you can actually learn from other people's mistake. I don't recommend reading a lot of those but what I am trying to said is that is it not bad to read one.



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cmoneyspinner

When I read a post or article that is poorly written in English, I sometimes wonder if I am passing up an income opportunity. I wonder sometimes if I should approach the writer and offer my services for correcting and re-writing their work for a small fee.



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kaushikangara

Every book is worth reading. It is a person's whole hearted effort. We should not undermine the efforts of a writer. There is nothing called a bad book. It is all the perspective of the person who's reading it. It might have been correct from the author's perspective. Also, you gain valuable insight from everything you read whether good or bad. It will better your decision making ability.



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JBeleren

I completely agree. You can learn a lot from that badly written piece as you are to learn from something that is superb. Being able to discern what you didn't like and what mistakes were done will be helpful for your understanding of proper writing.



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mhingnhormz

Why should you read anything that is bafly written too: Thank you for sharing the thoughts and I agree with this. It may also serves a lesson learned and build awarenes on what to avoid because having an experience is much great than just hearing it. Experience will never be forget.



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