• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This Handbook critically examines research and theoretical issues that impact writing development from the early years through to adulthood. It provides those researching or teaching literacy with one of the most academically authoritative and comprehensive works in the field. With expert contributors from across the world, the book represents a detailed and valuable overview of a complex area of study.

Writing about What We Know: Generating Ideas in Writing
Writing about what we know: Generating ideas in writing

An old cliché about writing is that writers should write about what they know. The intention being to exhort writers, young writers in particular, to write about things in terms of their own experience rather than, for example, to make up stories about spaceships and pop stars. There is some truth in this: writers do write more fluently and coherently about familiar topics than they do about unfamiliar topics. However, as we shall see, simply writing about what one knows has also been identified as one of the main weaknesses of novice writers.

There are two senses in which simply writing about what you know is problematic. The first ...

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