88 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

"Dear SE, I don't even know how to express how disappointed I am in you--literally. Because I don't know all the facts. But all the indications I've seen make me fear that the full facts would only ...
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53 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

Dear Stack Exchange, for once can you be honest with us? Why didn't you give Monica Cellio a second and private hearing? Yours, The volunteers who make up Stack Exchange.   &...
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31 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

It depends on what your goal is --an open letter can have many different audiences, and the putative addressee may not be the actual target. With that said, the best structure for a persuasive ...
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19 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

Never I would have believed to consider StackExchange but the mask before the monstrous face of intolerance. That's not stronger than your first attempt. It's so archaic even experienced writers (e.g....
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  • 925
18 votes

Subverting the essence of fictional and/or religious entities; is it acceptable?

The beauty of fiction is that it can be whatever you want it to be. It's your story, your world, you characters, however you want to write them. You can use as much or as little of the real world as ...
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  • 1,429
16 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

"I am horrified to find..." whatever you are horrified to have discovered "I am most disappointed..." or maybe "I am shocked" or if the event you are writing about is worse you can say "I am appalled ...
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  • 261
15 votes
Accepted

How do I sound like Thanos when I write?

Thanos is a master of rhetoric. Some of the earlier answers hint at this but nobody is really getting to the crux of the issue: Thanos is a powerful and persuasive speaker because he carefully uses ...
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  • 3,097
15 votes

Subverting the essence of fictional and/or religious entities; is it acceptable?

Angels have had a whole bunch of different portrayals in fiction, many of them not entirely pure and good. Often, they tend towards "well-intentioned extremist" or "lawful stupid paladin" types, ...
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10 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

I find that in the course of angry letter writing, you are walking a balancing act in which you have an action taken that could be motivated by bad faith or by incompetence or an incomplete picture of ...
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  • 10.7k
10 votes

What's the effect of placing "of course" at the beginning or at the end of the sentence?

The effect playing 'of course' at the beginning or end of a sentence is often dependent on the previous and subsequent sentences. At the end of a sentence 'of course' affirms a positive statement. "...
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  • 5,233
9 votes

Subverting the essence of fictional and/or religious entities; is it acceptable?

Not only is it acceptable, I’d say it’s encouraged. Original ideas and interesting stories often come from “what if” tweaks. There are several successful examples of angels that do not conform to the ...
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8 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

I think there are two important aspects that you should make clear: That you indeed do care about the issue. Your letter is not just a rant, you sincerely are concerned about the damage the issue ...
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  • 4,007
8 votes
Accepted

Ironic Juxtaposition or Antithesis?

You're on the right track with the guesses in your subject line. It is a sort of antithesis, by the definition: Juxtaposition of contrasting words or ideas (often, although not always, in ...
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  • 3,097
7 votes
Accepted

Books and resources to help me understand the rhetoric of other people's writings better

What you are looking for are resources on rhetorical analysis and/or rhetorical criticism. These are critical works that study a work of writing (written or orally delivered) not for its content but ...
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  • 3,097
6 votes
Accepted

What is this 'pretend dialogue' technique called

The method of laying out ideas in the form of a dialogue where both speakers are written by one author is called dialectic. It has its roots in philosophy and has wide application. What you're ...
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  • 1,659
4 votes

How do I sound like Thanos when I write?

It is not only what he says, but how he says it. And who he is as a character. Why do you like Thanos? Because he appeals to your fantasy of an alpha male, an ideal father figure: he is big and ...
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  • 2,822
4 votes

What's the effect of placing "of course" at the beginning or at the end of the sentence?

The ordering of your words, phrases, and sentences changes the rhythm of the work. When you read your piece aloud you might notice that "of course" sounds better in one place or another, or deleted ...
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  • 4,041
3 votes

"Dear Stack Exchange, I am very disappointed in you" - How to construct a strong opening line in a letter?

When you begin a letter with a rant, especially if it is rude or bossy, it is unlikely to be taken on board, by the reader, or get the results you want. The best opener in my view, establishes your ...
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  • 131
3 votes
Accepted

Using spoonerism for a non-humoristic purpose

The original Spoonerisms were accidental slips of the tongue and became a source of ridicule. Deliberate ones are either humorous or offensive - as the second example you cite is intended to anger the ...
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  • 12.4k
3 votes

What's the effect of placing "of course" at the beginning or at the end of the sentence?

You asked "What is the effect of placing of course ..." When writing, I ask myself, "Is this word or phrase nessary?" "Does [fill in the blank] enhance or clarify or help a ...
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  • 61
3 votes

Do modern readers like to read rhetorically saturated prose?

I, personally, as a "modern reader" do not prefer heavy and overly-detailed blocks of text. That is the main reason why I struggle to read classics and tend to gravitate to newer novels. ...
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2 votes

Subverting the essence of fictional and/or religious entities; is it acceptable?

Writers do this often, so clearly it can be done. And fiction is neither non-fiction, with its implicit commitment to accuracy and facts, nor a religious document, intended to shape people's beliefs, ...
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2 votes

Subverting the essence of fictional and/or religious entities; is it acceptable?

Deviating from reality or conventional understanding can make a story more interesting ... or it can make it confusing. Or even offensive. A lot depends on what the purpose is for your deviations. If ...
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  • 25.2k
2 votes

How do I sound like Thanos when I write?

As you say, they are philosophical; and they seem powerful because they seem true and momentous. I ask you, to what end? Dread it, run from it, destiny arrives all the same. He is explaining the ...
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  • 91k
2 votes
Accepted

Is there a good reference book on allegories used in literature?

Have a look on this. Encyclopedia of Allegorical Literature (ABC-CLIO Literary Companion) Author: David Adams Leeming; Kathleen Morgan Drowne Publisher: Santa Barbara, Calif. : ABC-CLIO, ©1996. ...
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  • 947
2 votes
Accepted

Is my method of arguing here bad?

There is no one single "high school essay" structure. And it's true that some of the structures we learn for writing in high school can be useful throughout life. There may indeed be times ...
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