Tag Archives: Teaching Nonfiction Revision

Writing Engaging Characters for Nonfiction

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Adapted from Teaching Nonfiction Revision: A Professional Writer Shares Strategies, Tips, and Lessons by Sneed B. Collard and Vicki Spandel


Have you ever watched a film that you enjoyed, but afterward had trouble describing— or, worse yet, never thought about again? Unfortunately, many Hollywood movies fall into this category.

They seem well-constructed and crackle with gee-whiz action, yet leave the audience empty and disappointed. Most often, the problem boils down to one issue: there’s no person or thing in the movie that we actually care about. Instead of being character driven, these movies are plot-driven. They are defined by events instead of characters that we actually identify with.

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6 Steps to Create an Environment that Supports Revision

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Adapted from Teaching Nonfiction Revision: A Professional Writer Shares Strategies, Tips, and Lessons by Sneed B. Collard and Vicki Spandel


Remember the scene in the movie Alien where the baby alien bursts out of the crew member’s chest cavity? The same horror we felt watching that monster erupt onto the screen is what many students experience when facing revision. Really, who can blame them? They just finished sweating over a writing assignment—and that was hard enough. Now you want them to go back and revisit that very same piece? Have you lost your mind?

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