One hundred percent of the writing you create instigates itself from the mind. What lights your fire? What consumes you with passion? What might you actually have something to say about—and simultaneously make a difference? These challenging rhetorical questions remain a permanent staple in my mind, as they were the wise interrogations of my very first college writing professor. Utilize these questions as a guide for your own mind—your train of thought—eventually proceeding through the tip of your pen or through your fingertips to the keyboard. With lack of passion or enjoyment enters that fearful, frustrated ambiance many feel during the writing process. I’ve sure felt it before. Only passion, strong interest, and personal connection to your writing drive that fear away. Forget about the prompt, the typical essay expectations, or the topic of choice; write firstly for yourself; that’s when the best composition unravels.
The last time I wrote unrelated to a school assignment must have been the 8th grad—in a diary notebook—until I discovered the fulfilling expression writing allows. You could say I’m one of those Disney freaks. At that, I’m a college student Disney freak. “What does that have to do with writing?” you may ask. In fact, it has everything to do with writing for me. For a while I have been writing Disney-related blog posts online each week; acts of writing done completely for myself and whoever might come across them. In this blog I incorporate my personal favorite works of Disney, my personal favorite memories related to Disney; really just all of my personal favorite aspects of Disney. Keeping a blog for myself where I may write freely about a subject I love has boosted my creativity and tolerance for writing by a landslide.
What is it that you love? Write about it. How will you incorporate your own interests into writing? Think about it. Allow the right side of your brain to do the talking—that is, the creative side. Writing must never be a chore; in fact, it provides each of us an expressive outlet to enhance our creativity, our skills. When you think about writing, think about yourself; it’s primary origin.
“Writing for fun”—what a concept. The mere thought of it sends a chill down the spine. Little do many recognize, it opens a whole new world of cognitive and imaginative possibility. In the process of writing, no method often proves the best method. Writing involves no expectations; the sky is literally the limit. Of course there involves strict expectations when composing a scientific or psychological college research paper; but what steps are involved to reach the point where we can easily dive into such a complex piece? Practice, practice, practice. Brainstorming, drafting, or simply listing what we know or love about a topic close to our hearts: all techniques of expanding communication horizons. Just as music or art stand as creative outlets of self-expression, so too does free writing work as the mind’s expressive tool—a tool meant to be inventively used.
“By the end of this course, you will love to write”—a few more challenging words from my first college writing professor. I didn’t believe him at first, but he was unmistakably correct. Nonetheless, you don’t need an entire course to discover the infinite, resourceful benefits writing delivers. In fact, I could recap a few of the course’s main lessons in a couple sentences now as concepts to ponder. Learn your mind’s inestimable power on your own; write because your heart bids you to. Discover what bestows you relentless passion. What topic do you have absolutely everything to say about? If you can say it, you can write it. Fear less of the technicalities involved in the writing process; reflect more on what you’d like to communicate. Allow your works to emanate directly from your passionate mind; you’ll be surprised to find how quickly a page or two of eloquent writing ensues.
Danielle Canchola has been a Peer Writing Consultant at the MVCC Writing Center since Fall 2013. Come visit the Center to take discover your writing passion.
Writing is a journey. You travel from one place, or one stage, to another never anticipating what the end result will bring. The end result could be good or bad, dull or powerful, much like a piece of writing.
It all starts with an idea; this idea sparks an end goal. The goal is to reach the end. But before you reach your goal, you must find the motivation and the courage to begin your journey.
So let’s begin the journey. You’re sparked with an idea, but what do you do with this idea? Where is this idea taking you? Now we are brainstorming steps to take to make this idea happen. Much like a journey or an adventure we are about to embark upon, we take many steps to prepare ourselves for what’s yet to come. In writing, we will gather our thoughts and our ideas, put them to paper, and then dive deeper into those thoughts. When I am given the assignment to develop a piece of writing, I must be sparked with an idea, or a topic first. This idea will bring about many questions. “Where do I start? How am I going to develop this topic further? Where am I going to get my information? How much time do I need to allow myself in order to complete my writing process?” I will sit down with a notebook, a pen, and my laptop. I will scribble my topic into my notebook, and I will ponder approximately how much time I need to allow myself to complete each step in the writing process. After I’ve done this, it is important for me to draw up an initial outline of what I think I should introduce. Here, I am preparing myself for the journey that we call writing.
And now the journey has begun. However, shortly after you start writing, you hit a road block. Maybe you ran out of ideas. Maybe your mind went blank. Even through all of this, a great writer must have the continued inspiration and courage to keep writing. It takes a courageous writer to overcome the challenges that a piece of writing may bring and explore different options to accomplish the end goal. When writers obtain “writer’s block”—as most of us call it—the insights of others can help to replenish and redirect our minds to stay on track and overcome the challenges. On a journey or an adventure, those guides act like a bridge; however, Shel Silverstein once said, “This bridge will only take you halfway there; the last few steps you’ll have to take alone.” He is correct. There will always be someone there to guide you, but they will only get you so far. The rest of the work you must do on your own. Thus, at the end, you will notice a profound discovery.
Don’t get me wrong—this discovery, this result at the end of the road may not be what you wanted or hoped it to be, but you learn something about yourself. If the end result wasn’t what you hoped for, don’t quit. You should either retrace your steps or take what you learned this time to hopefully do it better next time. In regards to writing, you should either go back to change your mistakes or you can take the grade you earned this time to hopefully make a better paper next time.
So what I’m trying to say is writing is a journey. It requires an initial idea, preparation, and courage to move along. Though a journey creates challenges, we must accept the fact that we may need to ask for help along the way. Also, it is especially beneficial to understand that your journey may not end to your satisfaction.
Not every journey is valuable, but hear me when I say, every journey has value.
Heather Hudzinksi has been a Peer Writing Consultant at the MVCC Writing Center since Fall 2013. Come visit the Center to take a journey her.
Writing, I would have to say, just comes as an extremely natural habit in most cases for anyone. Writing has always been my way out of reality, as well as helping me ease my mind. In my eyes, with no matter what you write, it comes from experience, feelings, background, or history. Most of all, writing comes from how you feel, and that is why I love writing. Every time I tend to think I’m struggling when writing something or when I’m having a rough time about thinking what to write, I think of personal experiences and feelings towards what I’m writing even if it’s a topic I’m just starting to learn. Being stuck in a position of not knowing how to start or where to go next is rough, but with the right mind you can always overcome it. For myself, when I use this method, I usually just put my pen to paper, and I won’t be able to stop. The way I feel overcomes everything and takes over. The feelings I have play a major role in everything I write no matter what the case may be. Writing to me means more when there are personal experiences and feelings behind it, so the reader can feel more connected and understand why the writer chose to write about what she did or why the writer is saying the things she is saying. It also makes things more interesting, easier to pay attention to, and easier to stay focused on. Writing with no personal input and feelings makes it harder to stay focused. A major reason I love the Speaking and Writing Center is that I believe everyone needs someone to help them to just offer another set of eyes to read over what he or she has written. Three different people can read the same paper, and each person, I’m sure, can connect in different ways with the piece. This, I believe, shows how all writers are different. I believe everyone is an amazing writer; we just all have different ways of writing.
Lauren Reierson has been a Peer Writing Consultant at the MVCC Writing Center since Fall 2013. Come visit the Center to find your writing nature.