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跟着记者学写小故事

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新闻记者常常使用轶事型导语anecdotal leads)。轶事型导语就是在开头用一个小故事、一段轶事来引导全文。用人物故事或轶事写作的导语,读起来鲜活,牵引读者的情感,是吸引读者上钩的鱼饵。

在通常情况下,轶事仅仅描写意外或者片刻发生的事情,却是全文最精彩的部分之一,它标志着出事了something happened)。

在美国大学申请短文写作中,轶事是非常棒的开场方式。有什么方法还能比开头用个小故事更能抓住读者呢?

 

今天上新微信君为您准备了一些写轶事的小贴士:

 

Ø 从戏剧冲突的高峰起头。(下文再返回头解释)

Ø 描述场景:所见、所闻、所感……如果相关的话,还有气息和味道。这些都称为感知细节

Ø 讲述5Ws1H:谁(who),发生了什么事情(what),在什么地方发生的(where),在什么时间发生的(when),为什么会发生(why),如何发生的(how)。

Ø 描绘轶事就仿佛在用自己的话描绘一张图片或者一段秒拍,聚焦人物的动作。

Ø 轶事中发生的动作往往只是几分钟的事情。

Ø 插入一两句对话,推动故事发展,增添故事戏剧性。

Ø 使用扎实的细节。一定要具体!不要说狗向我跑过来。而要说隔壁院子里的藏獒约翰向我冲过来

Ø 一般使用短句,或者长短搭配

Ø 不要提前泄露结果,不要担心交代背景或者解释语境。你在下文中可以返回头再进行解释说明

Ø 借鉴文学性写作技巧:细节、对话、情绪、个性、描述性语言……

Ø 使用简单语汇(避开SAT词汇),多使用名词动词,有节制地使用形容词和副词。

Ø 讲这段轶事如果用了三个自然段,那么就努力把它缩写到一两个自然段,只保留再现那个片段所需要的文字即可。然后你会惊奇地发现缩写后的效果更好。马克ž吐温说过:写作非常简单。你要做的就是把错误的词语都删掉。

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范文(摘自《纽约时报》)

Lyle Li

Brooklyn

Essay Written for New York University

(ANECDOTE) While resting comfortably in my air-conditioned bedroom one hot summer night, I received a phone call from my mom. She asked me softly, "Lyle, can you come down and clean up the restaurant?"

 

Slightly annoyed, I put on my sandals and proceeded downstairs. Mixing the hot water with cleaning detergents, I was ready to clean up the restaurant floor. Usually the process was painstakingly slow: I had to first empty a bucket full of dirty water, only to fill it up again with boiling water. But that night I made quick work and finished in five minutes. My mom, unsatisfied, snatched the mop from me and began to demonstrate the “proper way” to clean the floor. She demanded a redo. I complied, but she showed no signs of approval. As much as I wanted to erupt that night, I had good reasons to stay calm.

(Background) Growing up in rural China, my mom concerned herself not with what she would wear to school every day, but rather how she could provide for her family. While many of her classmates immediately joined the work force upon completing high school, my mom had other aspirations. She wanted to be a doctor. But when her college rejections arrived, my mother, despite being one of the strongest individuals I know, broke down. My grandparents urged her to pursue another year of education. She refused. Instead, she took up a modestly paying job as a teacher in order to lessen the financial burden on the family. Today, more than twenty years have passed, yet the walls of my parents’ bedroom still do not bear a framed college degree with the name "Tang Xiao Geng" on it.

(Development) In contrast, when I visit my friends, I see the names of elite institutions adorning the living room walls. I am conscious that these framed diplomas are testaments to the hard work and accomplishments of my friends’ parents and siblings. Nevertheless, the sight of them was an irritating reminder of the disparity between our households. I was not the upper middle class kid on Park Avenue. Truth be told, I am just some kid from Brooklyn.

 

Instead of diplomas and accolades, my parents’ room emits a smell from the restaurant uniforms they wear seven days a week, all year round. It’s funny how I never see my mom in makeup, expensive jeans, lavish dresses, or even just casual, everyday clothing that I often see other moms wearing. Yet, one must possess something extraordinary to be able to stand in front of a cash register for 19 years and do so with pride and determination.

 

On certain nights, I would come home sweaty, dressed in a gold button blazer and colored pants, unmistakable evidence of socializing. In contrast, my mom appears physically and emotionally worn-out from work. But, she still asks me about my day. Consumed by guilt, I find it hard to answer her.

 

Moments such as those challenge my criteria of what constitutes true success. My mother, despite never going to college, still managed to make a difference in my life. Tomorrow, she will put on her uniform with just as much dignity as a businesswoman would her power suit. What is her secret? She wholeheartedly believes that her son’s future is worth the investment. The outcome of my education will be vindication of that belief.

 

(Meaning) In hindsight, I’m astounded at the ease with which I can compose all my views of this amazing woman on a piece of paper, but lack the nerve to express my gratitude in conversations. Perhaps, actions will indeed speak louder than words. When I graduate on June 1st, I know she will buy a dress to honor the special occasion. When I toil through my college thesis, I know she will still be mopping the restaurant floor at 11:00 PM. When I finally hang up my diploma in my bedroom, I know she will be smiling.

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