Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Purdue OWL

Today's tool is a handy reference for both creative and academic writing.

Purdue OWL

The Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL) is a website maintained by the university and available to everybody for free. It's got detailed sections on things like the mechanics of writing, grammar and punctuation, which can be handy if you need to brush up on how to use a semi-colon.

The knowledge contained in this free resource is actually pretty extensive and I've come back to it over the years since I was in college and needed a little help with my essay writing. It even provides tips on things like journalism and writing in literature.

The Facts: 

Type: Website 
Maker/Publisher: Purdue University 
Price: Free! 
Year Created: 1994 

What I liked most:

  • It's Comprehensive: Want to know how to make your sentences clearer? There's a handout for that. Want to learn how to properly use a transitional device? It's on there. Need to brush up on your dependent/independent clauses? They have your back.
  • Style Guides: The Purdue OWL offers style guides in multiple flavors; APA, MLA and Chicago, 16th Edition.
  • Creative Writing Section: This section is a small, but cool primer on the absolute basics of plot and character development, along with some sections about poetry.

What I liked least:

I can't really think of anything not to like, unless you're staunchly anti-Purdue University or something.  It's a free resource kept open by the university and donations, available to everyone.  What's not to like?

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