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It’s Okay to Break the Rules…Sometimes

I recently had an opportunity to write a blog for the Data Visualization Society, a group of data visualization practitioners from various backgrounds and with various expertise. Below is a quick excerpt followed by a link to the full blog on their website.

Data visualization is like writing….
In high school, I learned the rules for writing an essay. You know them: Start with an introduction, then move onto your body paragraphs, each of which should contain at least 2 supporting facts, end with a conclusion, and, whatever you do, never ever say “I”. Throughout high school, I stuck to those rules and never strayed from them. Fortunately, the formula seemed to work for me; my writing was good and I did well on my essays. But when I arrived at college, I started reading pretty much anything I could get my hands on — classic novels, philosophy, news articles, non-fiction, etc. — and I noticed something: they often broke the rules. It was shocking to me at first, but then I started to realize that, at times, it was okay to break these rules and I started to slowly introduce such rule breaking into my own writing. And what happened? My writing improved. I had more freedom. Unconstrained by the rules, I found my own voice.

Read the rest of the blog here: It’s Okay to Break the Rules…Sometimes

Ken Flerlage, April 18, 2019





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