How to Improve as a Question Writer?

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jesposito
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How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by jesposito » Thu Dec 21, 2017 12:38 pm

Hi friends, I'm an aspiring question writer and my questions are probably terrible. However, not being in a especially active Quiz Bowl community, I don't really have anyone to give me advice on my questions. Can anyone point me in the right direction to get some good feedback on my questions, and possibly other resources to help me improve? Thanks!
Joe Esposito
Aurora, Ohio, 2019

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UlyssesInvictus
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by UlyssesInvictus » Thu Dec 21, 2017 1:12 pm

A happy welcome to the forums!

- Write lots of questions, and read lots of good ones.
- I'm sure people on the forums would love to give advice, if you're OK with them seeing your questions! (We even used to have a thread for this at some point, but it might have died.)
- The links here can help! (especially Jerry V.'s guide): https://www.quizdb.org/resources#question-writing
Raynor Kuang
quizdb.org
Harvard 2017, TJHSST 2013
I wrote GRAPHIC and FILM

jesposito
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by jesposito » Thu Dec 21, 2017 1:29 pm

UlyssesInvictus wrote: - I'm sure people on the forums would love to give advice, if you're OK with them seeing your questions! (We even used to have a thread for this at some point, but it might have died.)
I would definitely be willing to give my questions to others to read! I saw that thread you're talking about, but I it said it was discontinued, so I didn't know if people were still interested in doing this. Thanks for the other advice as well, I'll be sure to read up! (Btw, I love quizdb.org, so good)
Joe Esposito
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UlyssesInvictus
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by UlyssesInvictus » Thu Dec 21, 2017 1:37 pm

Well, I'd be personally happy to send you back a paragraph or two if you want to DM me a question or two.

Also feel free to be the change you want to see in the world by reviving that thread or starting a new one.
Raynor Kuang
quizdb.org
Harvard 2017, TJHSST 2013
I wrote GRAPHIC and FILM

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Skepticism and Animal Feed
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed » Thu Dec 21, 2017 2:06 pm

People are always going to be able to find something about your questions to criticize. You'll know you're a good writer when the criticism becomes a bunch of subjective nit-picking about specific clues (e.g., "you mentioned the Battle of the Gates of Trajan before the Battle of Pliska, but in the AP Bulgarian History class I took in high school we focused much more on Gates of Trajan so I think that's more famous") instead of more fundamental stuff like "the pronouns you use are unclear" or "your clues are not uniquely identifying".
Bruce
Harvard '10 / UChicago '07 / Roycemore School '04
ACF Member emeritus
My guide to using Wikipedia as a question source

jesposito
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by jesposito » Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:18 pm

UlyssesInvictus wrote:Well, I'd be personally happy to send you back a paragraph or two if you want to DM me a question or two.

Also feel free to be the change you want to see in the world by reviving that thread or starting a new one.
I do wish I could revive that thread, but I not sure if there's anyone would who use it. After all, that's probably why the first one stopped. And I dmed you some questions, thanks for helping out!
Skepticism and Animal Feed wrote:People are always going to be able to find something about your questions to criticize. You'll know you're a good writer when the criticism becomes a bunch of subjective nit-picking about specific clues (e.g., "you mentioned the Battle of the Gates of Trajan before the Battle of Pliska, but in the AP Bulgarian History class I took in high school we focused much more on Gates of Trajan so I think that's more famous") instead of more fundamental stuff like "the pronouns you use are unclear" or "your clues are not uniquely identifying".
Lol, being able to write competently about Bulgarian history, that's the dream. In all seriousness though, thanks for the advice, I do hope I can get to that level!
Joe Esposito
Aurora, Ohio, 2019

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Irreligion in Bangladesh
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by Irreligion in Bangladesh » Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:29 pm

I'll second Jerry's guide. I've also got some essays of varying use here, with more beginner essays on the way "soon."
Brad Fischer
Head Editor, IHSA State Series

Winnebago HS ('06)
Northern Illinois University ('10)
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alexdz
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Re: How to Improve as a Question Writer?

Post by alexdz » Thu Dec 21, 2017 3:55 pm

Additionally, don't be afraid to offer your question writing service to an organization or company. As an example, I run a company that works on middle school and elementary sets called SAGES, but I'm not the only one by far! To be fair, not everyone will be looking for new writers and not everyone will be able to use the kinds of questions you are looking to write. They'll also vary in how much feedback they're able to give you. But, at least it gives you an outlet to hone your skills and write with some focus and purpose in mind.
Alex Dzurick
====
Owner/Editor, SAGES Quizbowl Questions
====
University of Illinois ('15-'17)
MOQBA Secretary ('08-'15) ::: MACA Vice President ('13-'15)
South Callaway MS/6th Grade Coach ('12-'13) ::: University of Missouri ('08-'12)
ACUI Region 11 Coordinator ('10-'11) ::: South Callaway HS ('04-'08)

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