Persuasion and rhetoric as editorial tools


An evening of discussion with Pamela Hewitt

Date: Wednesday, 28 April 2021
Time: 6:30pm, doors open at 5:40pm for nibbles and drinks
Venue: Durie Room, St Mark’s College (details below)

Please register via Trybooking. We will ask you to sign our attendance sheet when you arrive.

Note that this meeting will not be broadcast, because our tech wiz has been called to family responsibilities for the next two months.

Editors deal with persuasive language and rhetoric, whether consciously or not. The techniques of persuasion are not used only in polemical writing but in works of fiction, blog posts and everything in between.

An important aspect of editing is putting the reader first. This includes making sure that meaning is clear and language is pitched for the audience. It involves organising the text in a pleasing and logical fashion. Maybe more than anything, it stops readers from getting bored.

Appeals to the senses can be pathways to readers’ hearts and minds. As with tact, persuasive writing works best when it goes unnoticed.

This presentation explores ways that editing can help persuade readers to suspend disbelief and carry them along with the power and beauty of carefully chosen words. It draws from a range of genres, with examples from a study of Australian immigration policy, an anthology on the Northern Territory Intervention, literary and romance fiction.

Pamela Hewitt is an accredited editor who has worked in editing and publishing for over 25 years. After an in-house career in educational and academic editing, she established a freelance editorial practice focusing on memoir, fiction and creative non-fiction. Many titles she has edited have won major literary awards. A qualified teacher, Pamela has presented editing and writing programs around Australia and internationally.

How to find the venue

Meetings are held in the Durie Room, St Mark’s National Theological Centre, 15 Blackall St, Barton (not Blackall Place). The Durie Room is accessible from the carpark closest to Kings Avenue. See MAP.

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