Writing Assignment 4th term

In addition to reading for 10 minutes a day, we will be beginning a writing project that will carry us through to the end of the school year: Daily Writing. Well, we must qualify it as almost, because you do not have this class every day and thus will only be expected to write every day we have class.

For Daily Writing you will do what a great many writers do: write every day. Writing daily has been found by a great many writers to be a key to successful writing. It promotes the deepening of thought by maintaining concentrated and continuing attention over time, and it often yields new ideas and discoveries through the continuing dialogue with the self. For most writers, it is almost a necessity, if one is to complete a serious intellectual or creative project.

The requirement to write does not carry with it any requirement about what you will write. Write whatever you feel like writing or whatever you need to write. Some days you might choose to write something that happens to be on your mind. What you write doesn’t matter as long as you do write, really write, which is to say, compose. Of course, if you merely write down random, superficial thoughts in order to fulfill the assignment and never allow yourself to be carried away by your thinking or to become seriously engaged in developing any thought or idea, then you will have wasted your time. That isn’t writing; that’s scribbling/typing. Be sure to note the date of your writing. Such information may be useful to you later.

Hence, I hope that all of you—no matter what your previous experience as a writer might be—will take this assignment seriously as a learning opportunity and therefore engage in it in the spirit of play that is so crucial to most genuine learning experiences.  Please treat this assignment as an experiment to be processed and evaluated later (which you will do, as both a part of your midterm and a part of your final). Don’t judge it as you do it. Don’t even look back at what you have written (unless you need to in order to continue a piece). This discipline has a record of value among so many writers that it deserves a chance, even if you feel considerable resistance to it at the beginning. Like many disciplines, you may not know why it is valuable until giving yourself over to it for some time.  Play with the opportunity and responsibility for writing (almost) every day, and be willing to see what happens rather than feeling obliged to make something happen which you think ought to happen. You can even resent it and write about why you resent such a discipline, but to play the game of the discipline you must participate in it, which means submitting yourself to it in good faith, however reluctantly or suspiciously you may find yourself participating at various stages of the experience.

 

 

Daily Writing:

To summarize:

  • We will write for 10 minutes every day in class after we read.
  • No requirement for what you will write. Some people choose to work on an essay or paper for a class, other days you might write about what is on your mind. Maybe you want to write about what you are reading. Some people choose to work on a writing project such as a fictional piece of writing.
  • Write the date on your writing every time.
  • If you merely write down random, superficial thoughts in order to fulfill the assignment and never allow yourself to be carried away by your thinking or to become seriously engaged in developing any thought or idea, then you will have wasted your time.
  • We will process and evaluate this experience/assignment both at midterm and as part of your final for the class.
  • Even if you don’t think you will like this assignment, you must participate in it to be able to discuss why you don’t like it.

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