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The Prose Improvement Expedition (PIE) aims to identify high-profile Wikivoyage articles that require an improvement to their written style and then rewrite or rework the prose as appropriate. Our Tone guide describes the kind of prose we aim for.
On a site like Wikivoyage where many users contribute content, it is inevitable that the writing style will sometimes be problematic in various ways:
- inconsistent style from multiple writers
- difficult reading because the text does not develop logically; instead it comes across as disconnected chunks
- duplication — for example, a town's big attraction might be described in the introduction, again in "Understand" and again in "See"
- overstated text both from marketers (see Don't tout) and from people who are just wildly enthusiastic about their home town or a favorite travel destination
- errors in grammar, spelling or idiom, including those from people writing in a second language
- idioms or cultural references that may be incomprehensible to some readers of an international site
Ideally, our text would be complete, readable and lively; this expedition focuses on the last two, the ones that can be improved by an editor who does not have local knowledge. The best travel guides have an engaging written style and that's what we want for Wikivoyage, dispelling any suggestions that our content is 'dull'.
Also, by altering our prose we can help to differentiate ourselves from other travel sites to a greater extent, potentially helping in our quest to improve WV's search rankings.
- Identify high profile articles (i.e. countries, major cities and tourist hotspots) that require an injection of spice into their prose.
- Rework and rewrite these articles as appropriate, creating exciting and engaging travel guides.
- Discuss the extent to which we wish to make our articles more exciting (?).
Here are example articles that have the kind of lively writing we aim for.
Works in progress
The articles below have been identified as candidates for improvement to their written style. Please feel free to plunge forward and edit the articles as you see fit or to add to this list any other articles that you feel could be made more engaging for a reader. If you wish to discuss any article nominated for improvement here, please leave your comments on the expedition's talk page.
When editing, it's probably advisable to focus initially on an article's lead paragraph, although changes to other sections of a page are also welcome.
Once you feel an article has been improved sufficiently, please remove it from this list.