First off, I really enjoyed reading your comments on my “Meet My Feet” as well as the discussion of memoir. I noticed more than one of you has read Michelle Obama’s memoir–I have that on my “to read” list, and I think I need to put it on the top of my list! I also loved to hear your thoughts on Patchett’s work. It’s always fun to hear what people think about a familiar piece. I always see something a little new about a work when I introduce it to students. Y’all are off to a good start with this class!

Second, I wanted to spend a little time talking about providing formal critiques. As you know, you’re supposed to submit your memoir “Meet My ____” to your cohort by Wednesday night, and then give formal critiques that are due on Friday night. The cohort lists and the template for critiquing can be found here.

  • Remember: When you email your work to your Cohort, send me a copy as well for participation points. The deadline is Wednesday at 11:59 PM!

Sometimes people find it hard to critique someone else’s writing–especially creative writing–so I’ve created a template to help you give helpful feedback.

On the template, I have a few directions:

First, it says: Write one item you enjoyed for four out of the six topics. Write one question you had for at least four out of the six topics.

So, basically I want you to say four positive things about the piece and four questions you have after reading it.

I mention that you need to be specific and provide an example of what being specific is…

Voice & Style

I enjoyed the word choice—the author made everything very clear to me.

You don’t have to write a paragraph, but give some meat to the compliment.

Likewise, be specific about your questions…

Point of View

Whose POV did the author intend to use? Just Julia’s POV, or both Ramon AND Julia?

Once again, you don’t have to write a lot, but your question should really help the writer improve their next draft.

  • Remember to read all of your Cohort members’ pieces and email the responses by Friday 11:59 PM.

If you have questions, come to an office hour and we’ll talk!