How To Write Ineffectively, Part I of III

How To Write Ineffectively, Part I of III
By Monette Benoit, All Rights Reserved.

“There’s A Lot Going On In The Circus”, March 2012, included one sentence that has resulted in (many, many) private emails from students, court reporters, CART providers, and broadcast captioners.

I have been asked to elaborate.

I wrote, “… The circus comes to town in the blink of an eye. … Students and court reporters know how to work, and we know how to write ineffectively. In short, we know what does not work.”

As I received comments and questions I read, “I received my school certificate, but I haven’t passed state or NCRA certification. I have so much – as other students – to contend with, and even though we try to practice every day, we don’t progress. Lord knows we pray. This can be depressing.”

Multiple emails from reporters detailing how they write ineffectively, another email about not seeming “to get anywhere” while “trying to practice” every day, including the term depressing and earning certification – these are each important words to me.

Students develop specific skills, in my opinion, while in school.

Upon graduation, court reporters learn a complete new skill set while realtiming.

(I am in awe of the students now graduating with conflict-free dictionaries and custom software packages to specifically meet their needs, their requests.)

Our intention while in school, in my opinion, is to pass that test.

Our intention while on the job as a court reporter, CART provider, and broadcast captioner is to accurately have each word translate accurately.

Certificate pages in depositions and courtrooms require our signature stating we provided an accurate transcript (wording varies with each venue, state, and court, we know).

CART providers and captioners know that their consumer(s) and/or viewing audience are relying upon their finely tuned skills to accurately realtime each word.

Writing ineffectively, for a student and/or a reporter, would include not eliminating efforts that are unproductive. Yes?

Simple, yes?

Perhaps not, it seems, from the students and professionals who contact me.

“How do I change my writing?” they ask.

Working harder for each test and on each job does take its toll.

Stress, burnout, ill health – we know these issues may surface when work and testing are challenging.

Yet many people with a refocus will change the challenge.

I have placed my head on my desk or the steering wheel with the simple mantra, “That will never happen again.”

Then I work and focus upon removing that problem.

Does it work the first time?

I wish.

Yet, a focus draws attention.

We learned theory and progressed through school, yes? You can change your focus.

Part II of III is posted May 15, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at and

Part III of III is posted May 25, 2012, on Monette’s Musings at and

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