QSR1: Thinking Critically

“The writer must learn to read critically but constructively, to cut what is bad,
to reveal what is good.” (Murray, 28)

I think Murray’s use of this word in terms of revision is for emphasis on the thought process during revision. I believe he is trying to say that when writing a piece, you must think very carefully and constructively when revising it. One of his main messages in his piece is that, essentially,a true writer’s work is never truly done. He portrays this message well when he quotes “The maker’s eye is never satisfied, for each word has the potential to ignite new meaning.” I think, with this being said, while also taking into account his overall message of a true writer never really being satisfied with their work, Murray is saying that thinking critically when revising is a must. While revising for things like spelling and punctuation are necessary on a grammatical level, it’d be reasonable to assume that Murray is specifically talking about the structure and ideas in a piece when he refers to “revising while being critical”. On page 29, Murray begins to break down exactly what writers look for in their writing and how they look at it when revising. He uses italics to emphasize exactly what he’s talking about; those words being “audience” “form” “structure” “development” “dimension” and “voice”. Once again, it’s reasonable to assume these are the specific elements of writing pieces that he is urging the reader to look into, which ties back into him asking the reader to think critically when revising. It’s easy to get lost in the revision process, busying yourself up with double-knotting loose ends that don’t really require your attention. However, when thinking critically, you would of course prioritize looking over certain elements of your work, and then save whatever time you have left for said seemingly trivial aspects of your work; I believe those aspects that are important to work on are the ones Murray listed, seeing as though he legitimately explains why writers should focus on those aspects when revising in his piece.

4 thoughts on “QSR1: Thinking Critically

  1. I love this phrase: “busying yourself up with double-knotting loose ends that don’t really require your attention.” That is definitely a thing that happens with me. Do you find that this happens when you are doing a form of productive procrastination, as I like to call it? Meaning, you are doing something you have to do but it is not the top priority? Sometimes that is okay, because that is all you can do at the moment, but sometimes it means you are eating away time that could be better spent elsewhere, you know?

    I wanted to hear more about what writing/reading “critically” means to you! You hint at it through the key terms Murray lists, but I was wondering if there was more you had to say, perhaps in your writing experience or writing of others. Use that full word count space! Enjoyed reading

  2. I definitely agree on the “critical thinking” part. I think that critical thinking is essential to both writing and revising. However, we don’t always think critically because it takes so much effort. It even makes our head hurt sometimes. This is probably why when a piece of writing is at low stake, we don’t put all of our effort in, because it makes us feel uncomfortable.
    But practice is key, and that’s why we grind.

  3. I really like how you said “a true writer’s work is never truly done”. It sounds like a quote you would see printed on posters. Towards the end you spoke about prioritizing elements, when going revising writing do you think it is best to prioritize or go through and make sure every element is looked through and then some? Does prioritizing create time efficiency?

  4. I like that you used the quote about how the maker’s eye is never satisfied. You mentioned that because of this, revision is a must. Why do you think this. I would love to know how you think revision helps to satisfy the maker’s eye.

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