I was actually rather struck by something the authors pointed out in Writing as Communication. Like some of the others who posted before, I had always imagined that the research was the important learning process, and that because I personally tended to learn most when actually writing the paper, I was doing it wrong. It does make a good deal of sense, however, that writing serves to cement neural relationships and form bonds among memories and pieces of information; that’s how people learn, in fact– information only does so much without the all-important links and relationships between and among it.
In general, I found Writing as Communication more personally helpful than Writing Competently, as I have rarely had issues with grammar and style in writing. In fact, one of my teachers in eleventh grade told me that my writing style was “archaic” and overly formal rather than overly informal, and asked me to remedy that! (I’m still not entirely what he meant by that.) Still, it makes some good points about grammar– I was struck by the mention that grammar is a largely unconscious process, which is certainly true for me. Bad style certainly does destroy trust in an author. Witness how a badly misspelled email causes you to suspect a spam, or poor grammar in a novel leads you to discard it in favor of another.