English Composition II

Week 3: February 14-Feb 18

First order of business: I will be hosting a “write in” on Wednesday at 6PM.  We will all work together.  I will write, you will write, I will play a library video, and all will be magical.  I’ll also be available to answer questions at this time.   This is a great way to have accountability and get some work done so please join me.  If you can’t come this week, you will need to come next week when I will host them at Thursday at 11AM.  If you have a problem doing that, let’s email with each other and set up a time when you are available.

Special Focus of the week:  Let’s think about “concrete, significant detail”— the importance of being specific when talking about a particular incident.  Think about the readings thus far (including student writing). What are some good examples of clear, vivid detail? What did those details add to our understanding?  

What details are concrete? What are significant? How does significance change depending on the point we are trying to make? 

HW Day One:

READ AND ANNOTATE: “Tel l ‘Em All to come and get me: A Year of Being ‘Alright’” Hanif Abdurraqib.

A side note: we read another piece by Abdurraquib in our first week of class, when he wrote about his name. In that piece, he wrote about being Muslim, and never mentioned being black.  In this piece, he writes about being black, and never mentions being Muslim.  That is to say, in each of these fairly short pieces, he focuses distinctly on one community (and its language), though he is a member of multiple communities, as we all are.

WRITE: Finish up the scene you wrote. Make sure it is at least two (clearly defined) paragraphs.

HW Day Two:

READ: “Shitty First Drafts”, Anne Lamott.


WRITE: A Less Sh*&ty First Draft of UNIT ONE—the scene you wrote in class today can be a good starting place. The draft should be at least 800 words. Make sure you look at the assignment sheet before you start writing so you know what I’m looking for and what you’ll be graded on!


Help making a great grade on Your Unit 1 Draft:

Think of a particular scene when you (or someone else) used your word.   Now let’s get some great specific details about the scene.  

      Where are you in this scene?

      Who are you with? Can you describe them?

      What time of day is it? How do you know?

      What season is it? How do you know?

      What does your body feel like in this scene?

      What can you hear?

      What can you smell?

      Where is the light coming from and what is it like?

      Look to the left of you (in the scene.) What do you see?

      Look to the right of you. What do you see?

      Look at your feet– what’s there?

      Look above you. What do you see there?

      Look behind you. Describe what you see.

      Is there anything else about this scene you should mention?


Let’s think about paragraphs and their form during this exercise.  Take a peak at this slideshow. 





  1. Rouba

    The link for the “Shitty First Drafts” isn’t working.

  2. Ivan

    Professor the link for the “Shitty First Drafts” is still not working.

  3. Jennifer Garcia

    Hello Professor, the link isn’t working for me either.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *