Moral Obligation in Writing

Here's a refreshing bit about the moral reasons to excel in writing.

To write well, you must think correctly. You cannot hope to write clearly unless you first have clearly in mind what you are going to write. Before you attempt to write anything, even the answer to the simplest question on a daily quiz, you must have something to say. Not all students are gifted with equal creative ability, but all are responsible in a very real way; it is indeed a moral obligation to carry out certain practices of intent and honesty. These may be called the basic obligations of all students toward written work, and the are three in number: (1) All are obligated to study sufficiently in order to have a working knowledge of the subject before beginning to write. (2) All are equally obligated to use all the skill they posseses to convert this information into an interesting, coherent piece of writing. (3) All are obligated (and the seriousness of this obligation touches the very character of the student) to never try to pass off thoughtless, boring, and sloppily executed written work merely to get by.

From "Study is Hard Work" by William H. Armstrong, pg. 79

Ah, what clarity of standard and purpose! We and our students need more of this kind of talk.

My son and I are reading this, and he can't stop smiling about how much I'm nodding my head and exclaiming, "Yes!"

Now that your mind is elevated to such ideals, hopefully this blog will not be an utter disappointment.