Writing for the Public

Final Reflection

I felt as if my writing throughout the semester has remained stagnant. I don’t feel as if I’ve improved, but I do know places in which I could still make my writing better. I always seemed to have trouble organizing my work and putting it into concise paragraphs that help get my point across. This was especially seen in my Unit 2 assignment as my ideas were just thrown into the article. Unit 2 also happened to be my least favorite assignment as it was the furthest out of my comfort zone. I’m not used to writing articles and it showed on that assignment. I do tend to get confused when I have to make organizational decisions in my writing, whether it’s the placement of a paragraph or even a word. I tried basing these decisions around the current assignment in order to help conform my writing style to the assignment itself. This proved to be difficult for me since I am not very comfortable with long papers that have a lot of sources to cite and discuss. The additional information makes it difficult for me to properly integrate the ideas that I have with the information from other sources.  On the other hand,  my favorite assignment was Unit 3 with Unit 1 following close behind. I enjoyed completing Unit 3 as I was able to create a podcast with the help of my friend Rob in which we spoke about playing videogames during the COVID-19 pandemic. Not only were we able to share our thoughts and ideas, but it was based on something that I was knowledgeable in so it gave me confidence when I was both planning and recording the podcast. Additionally, I had this confidence when I was completing the Unit 1 assignment as well. My background knowledge on cars and the car scene in NYC really helped me when it came down to writing the paper itself. It’s clear that my writing style changes based on what I’m reading/writing currently in order to help myself adapt to the assignment in order to do the best I can.

Using scenes in my writing makes me feel comfortable when writing since I can imagine these places and things in my head, especially if it was something that I have actually done myself as I have a first person account of the scene. I feel as if the use of the scene in the Unit 1 assignment helped me the most with this, as I wrote,

“As I was walking through the streets of Long Island City, it seemed as if the only thing I could see was built cars all around me. The night was still young, but the street was completely packed with strangers, friends, and the occasional photographer coming by to snap a picture.” -Unit 1

By creating this scene, it helped put on the proper path in order to help get my thoughts across for the remainder of the introduction. I felt like this was helpful because it allowed me to think back to that night and really focus in on what I wanted to say to the audience. On the other hand in my Unit 2 assignment, by starting off with a harsh statistic, I was able to grab a readers attention, but it seemed as if I was losing steam as the introduction went along. I would like to carry that same confidence when writing all of my papers, but I cannot seem to figure it out when writing an article like I did in Unit 1.  Additionally, I never seem to feel very confident with my conclusions either. I find it difficult to make a conclusion that is both interesting to read and informative at the same time. As seen in my Unit 2 assignment,

“Safe firearm sales and usage can really help this nation reduce the number of accidental gun deaths we have every year. By taking a similar initiative by states such as California and Massachusetts on a larger scale, firearm manufacturers will still be able to prosper in the US as long as what they are selling is safe for the people to use.” -Unit 2

The conclusion here is informative, but it isn’t quite interesting to read and this is the issue I constantly seem to struggle with. I find it difficult to make assignments such as Unit 2 both interesting to read and properly informative. I also know that throughout my many years of college and high school writing, I always had an issue with organization. I always think that my writing is not good and won’t be good given my organizational issues. I always have trouble introducing and concluding my ideas and papers in general and I feel like this course helped me get over this issue a bit, I definitely feel as if I still do struggle in this aspect of writing.

Additionally, the switch to online schooling made everything even more difficult for me. I’ve never taken an online class prior to these past 2 semesters and I definitely have not adapted to this type of learning. I find it difficult to pay attention as is, and trying to do all that off of a computer makes it that much more difficult for me. This class was definitely the easiest transition to online school out of all of my classes as all the assignments made sense and Professor Hall made the explanations for them even more understandable and I’m very thankful for that. The toughest part of this course was trying my best to hand all my assignments in on time. I always had problems with procrastination and I still do to this day. Yet I’m still trying to improve my issues with procrastination by trying to complete assignments early. Even on this final portfolio, it took me over an hour of staring at this page and back at my phone before I even put a single word down. Reflections like this can be very helpful, especially for people like me. I am able to put my issues into the spotlight and realize what I am doing wrong, but on the other hand, it helps me show that sometimes my writing isn’t actually as bad as I think it is.

1 Comment

  1. Carrie Hall

    Elan, where is the actual portfolio, with your revised units?

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