Some assembly required

Speaking of pay copy, today I completed a project report for a corporate client --- executive summary, appendices and all. I think this is the first formal report I've written since I left the civil service almost four years ago.

In terms of style and tone, it couldn't be more different from the personal essay I've been working on since last week. The latter is growing very much organically and I'm learning what the argument is as it goes along, whereas with today's formal report, all I had to do was slap on the standard headings (executive summary, introduction, some chapter titles and conclusion) and everything fell into place. Just add page numbers, numbered paragraphs, list formatting and stir. Having a rigid structure to fall back on was almost therapeutic.

This is why I used to enjoy mathematics in junior college, I suppose, which was rare for an Arts stream student. No reading or essay-writing or struggling find the words required --- just apply the formula (assuming I'd understood it in the first place) and go.

I'll be writing another report next week. Perhaps I'll be tired of the format by then.



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