Lesson 1, Topic 1
In Progress

2.3 The overall structure of a piece of writing/signing is controlled and the conclusion is clearly formulated.

ryanrori December 29, 2020

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All pieces of writing should have some sort of structure, whether that structure is mandated by the form of writing (a sonnet, for example, has a very specific structure), or by the function (the structure of a magazine article or scientific report is created solely by the author) of the writing.  We say that the structure of any given piece of writing must be “appropriate” in that it must serve the writing’s purpose; that is, the writer of a murder mystery probably shouldn’t reveal the identity of the killer until the end of the book.  I use the word “probably” because a skilled author is certainly capable of spinning a compelling tale around nearly any structure. 

The structure of a piece of writing is neither more nor less than its combined parts, each of which works in conjunction with the others to create a meaningful whole.  On a very simple level we might say that the structure of any piece of writing must involve a beginning, middle, and an end.  Such things are often called constructions or components.  Other examples of constructions include introductory paragraphs, salutations, bodies (in the case of an essay or report, for example), quotations, invocations, and expositions.  Essentially, any group of words or sentences that has an identifiable purpose and function can be considered a construction, and within any given construction there can easily exist several smaller constructions.  Words, in and of themselves, are constructions, as are phrases and sentences (call them grammatical constructions), literary devices, passages, and paragraphs. 

Why is structure important?  Because it determines the “shape” of a piece of writing.  Structure determines whether or not a reader is properly guided through a report, or inspired at the end of a personal essay.  It controls the order in which a reader receives certain pieces of information.  Anyone who has seen a movie or read a book that involves flashbacks, or has noticed a recurring theme (the “good” guys in older films wore white, while the “bad guys” wore black) has seen an example of structure.