Onward and Upward|Say it with Numbers

今天,我們認為母親節買花給母親是再正常不過,但其實這習慣源於美國一個花店聯盟想多賺點錢的願望,該聯盟聘請的廣告策劃人,想出「Say it with Flowers」的ad slogan來鼓勵人們每年母親節光顧花店,ad slogan深入民心,過了一段時間,在美國內外,給母親送花跟生日要吃生日蛋糕一樣,成為城市人口生活的一部分。

想作文拿高分,也可以考慮是否能「Say it with Numbers」,用數字把內容描繪得更深刻。想像一下,如果一個香港學生來到英國後,想談論香港的劏房問題,下面這段文字是否effective?

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Many people in Hong Kong live in subdivided flats. This is because in my native city, property prices are extremely high and the income gap is very wide. So low income earners can’t find a decent place to live.

學生的問題,是假設英國老師已知道「subdivided flats」是怎麼一回事,雖然老師能大概猜到,但如果Say it with numbers,文章的衝擊力會完全不一樣:

My rewrite

In Hong Kong, 280,000 people –  the equivalent of almost 3% of metro London’s population – live in flats that have been further divided into units, where each person has an average of 40 square feet of space, and where it is not uncommon for children to do homework while sitting hunched up on the top bunk of their beds. It is my native city’s eye-wateringly high property prices that condemn so many to so sorry an existence: in a place where the median monthly income is 1900 pounds, on average apartments sell for one million.

香港學生寫英文,其中一個要跨越的門檻,是能寫perfectly grammatical的文章的同時,也能寫出引人入勝的內容。 Say it with numbers的技巧容易掌握,到Google找一些數據就可以了,所以不妨多用。

Michelle Ng

聯絡方式: michelleng.coach@proton.me
個人網站: https://michellengwritings.com
逢周日英國時間晚上8時 / 周一香港時間凌晨3時刊出



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