Week 2 (July 11-15)
Excellent work students on your wonderful self-introductions and reflections on William Zinsser’s “On Writing Well.” I see we have very good writers already in this class. Under Course Gradebook (to the right), you can check your grades on all your assignments.
As Zinsser reminds us, achieving clarity of focus while retaining our individual voices is no easy task but it’s something we can all work on over the semester. Let’s also keep an eye on other key points in our writing, including “unity of focus,” “eliminating clutter,” “building our vocabulary,” “keeping our particular audiences in mind,” as well as reviewing the basic rules of writing.
Please note that at the top of the site, I include a helpful college vocabulary list and links to a writing handbook I wrote some years ago (“Good Writing Made Simple”). I will be referring to these links as needed,
For this week, I am asking you to read three famous writers: the political writer George Orwell (author of Animal Farm, 1984, and coiner of the term “Big Brother”), the recently deceased Joan Didion (I’ve included a marvelous documentary on her life and career), and the Mexican American poet Jose Olivarez.
Here are the readings:
George Orwell’s essay “Why I Write”
POST: By Monday, July 18, I want you to comment on what you learned about writing from ONE of these authors and how their pieces reflect their own personal voice and style.