One thing that particularly bothered me about writing throughout school, was that I never felt that I significantly improved my writing as result of an English class, the classes I took felt very cookie cutter: I mean read a book, answer some questions and write an essay, and then there were projects like write research paper and analyze this book. I mean classes taught grammar, essay structure, literature and that’s about it. I was never taught how to write a thrilling essay with new and original thoughts.
It was more like a continuation of practice, that yielded little results and meanwhile in comparison I learned many useful lessons in my math and science classes. Writing was only a necessary skill for school, so I can succeed in my classes and use stand out in applications that require writing. That sums up my feelings about writing up until recently. In high school and most recently English 908, writing was a rather dreadful task, I didn’t really see it as a creative medium, and rather it was just another necessity for school. I also knew that if I did not learn to like writing, I would also not be able to improve my writing.
The primary reason I want to improve my writing was to be able to create quality content in quick and efficient manner. I recall my freshman year of high school as a particular loll in my writing career. While it was an easy class I was taken aback by the simplicity of the work. I mean some of the essays were just like filling in the words, and I mean that in the literal sense. I didn’t get a chance to develop my writing that year and I thought that was great, I mean there is nothing wrong with an easy A, or so I thought so until the next year.
Out of my own negligence I somehow ended up in an advanced English class, with monstrous projects, lots of reading and writing assignments that required thoughtful and original ideas. Well fortunately I enjoyed this class because of the in depth analysis of books and the critical thinking it required, however when it came to writing papers in English 2A it was still a tedious task and I struggled with writing partially because I struggled to generate a plethora of ideas and on top of that I would consistently try to perfect each sentence as I wrote my papers.
Then in my third year of high school I did improved on my ability of writing larger and more complex sentences but I continued to struggle with the word requirement. Then finally in my senior year of high school, when I started to expect something challenging again – nope it’s just more busy work and sentence combination. Now I understand that the content and the reason I am writing have a great impact on what I write. There were times where I would write for a grade and then there were the times I was writing because I was interested and engaged.
This became very evident when I was taking English 908 last semester and Read 054. I did not enjoy English because a majority of the assignments felt like busywork. On the other hand I put a greater effort in Read 054 because the main assignment of the class was to evaluate a research article in an interest of yours: I skill that I find valuable. Now after all of that is when I decide that I am going to make myself enjoy writing to become a better and more efficient writer. Now currently in this class I am now beginning to understand how to enjoy writing.
One fatal flaw I previously had in my writing process was that I tried to write the near final draft the first time, it was a slow and tedious process, that made my despise writing. The tool I used to overcome this is freewriting- being able to just throw out hundreds of words in short amount of time with ease is such a relief when it comes to write an assignment like these. Plenty of my free write words don’t ever make into my final paper, but just free writing with no limitations is actually fun.
I recall how enjoyable it was to write for the genre paper. The genre paper did it feel like work and I managed to create many great ideas. Freewriting is also useful because the lack of limitations make creating various ideas very easy that is with focus. Which brings me to a bit of advice I should give myself: before I begin to work on a large writing assignment I need to free write to not only clear my mind, but also prepare myself for writing and I really need to follow the idea of transitioning from a caterpillar to a cocoon and finally a butterfly.
I definitely used my advice when writing the Dialogue and argumentative paper. After my dialogue paper was read by classmates it became clear that there was a bias in my argument. The problem was that I did not really know the other side of the argument. So I then decided to write my argumentative paper opposing the view I had in the dialogue paper. The argumentative paper allowed me to learn about the other side of the argument and then incorporate the information into my dialogue.
My dialogue changed drastically, and both arguments became better developed. For example in my first draft the view opposing arming teachers responded to the argument of well-trained teachers by saying “ Is it still necessary for teachers to have guns because the police can take care of situation. ”. Then in my final draft this speaker responded to the same argument with “That is a bad example of why teachers should carry guns. Police officers train with firearms because it is necessary to their profession and therefore they train extensively.
Meanwhile a teacher’s focus is on the students, expecting a teacher to train sufficiently is an unrealistic expectation…” My first draft still needed a lot of work but I was ok with that because I kept in mind that I was going to revise it to get it to point, where I am glad to share it. Freewriting and revision are both great tools that go hand in hand with each other. I have become a more confident writer because I have effectively integrated these tools to alleviate my previous problems.
As I stated earlier I struggled to produce various ideas and tried to perfect my writing the first time, a deadly combo that destroyed any possible fun that could be had with writing. As result of the lessons I learned in this class, I went from and incredibly efficient writer, to one who can complete a paper in a reasonable timespan. I still have a long way to go, but at least I have gotten to a point where I can enjoy writing, and that is what I really wanted out of this class, because with the desire to write I can finally push myself through former obstacles and have a genuine reason to become a better writer.