Some notes on writing

  • Yesterday my students took an in-class AP Exam essay, and I wrote alongside them. I wanted to go through the process again so that I could remember my approach, and I wanted a model essay to show them and analyze together. What I didn’t expect was how thrilling it was for me. I was writing super fast, keenly analyzing the passage, and having to come up with the right words under pressure, and I genuinely found it fun. Maybe my strengths lie more in analytical writing than in creative writing? Or maybe my writing would be better if I could capture some parts of that approach– speed, motivation, exhiliration, and a little bit of competition.

 

  • I have a student who wants to be a writer. She’s a good one, too– her poetry is emotionally interesting and her writing voice is strong. She’s one of the students who seems to have her own style, even in high school. But she’s struggling to write at the moment, so yesterday we talked about ways to deal with the times when we just can’t write. I think I convinced her that every artist or creative person loses the will to put out work at some times. And what can we do? Either we take a break, focus on our “real lives,” jobs, school, friends. Or we push ourselves to create positive patterns in our lives so that we write daily or weekly and hope that something good comes of it.

 

  • All of this gothic literature has been affecting my poetry– I am writing dark story poems about bells and lying in the heather waiting for death and yearning for lost love. It doesn’t really feel like me, but I’m enjoying the experimentation, especially with meter and rhyme. Maybe I’ll write the next “Annabel Lee.” More likely my writing will change again with spring.

 

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