Wow. I’ve been peeking at your text threads, and they look great! I look forward to reading them! There’s a lot of ground to cover this week, so let’s get to it…


By now you’ve read a playwright’s work, created/revised your own dialogues, and shipped them off to your Cohort. Next, you need to look at your Cohort’s work, give feedback by Monday (see the Assignment page), and then revise accordingly.

Something I want you to focus on with your dialogues is to show something about your characters’ personalities in the thread. It doesn’t have to be a huge reveal–it can be something small; perhaps you share what their favorite cereal was when they were little or whatever.

One way to do this reveal is to create repetition in the dialogue. Suzan-Lori Parks does this in Topdog/Underdog and other work.

“What does it mean for characters to say the same thing twice? 3 times? Over and over and over and oh-vah.” 

Suzan-lori parks

As she says, the fact that something is repeated means that it isn’t just word-vomit. It means something bigger. Think about lyrics in all genres of music–there’s usually some refrain (otherwise known as the chorus) that trumpets the main message of the song. The one thing the writer wants the listeners to understand.

Another way to have your character reveal something is to NOT say what they mean. Think about a time when you’ve had to talk about something that you didn’t feel comfortable discussing. We often “talk around” uncomfortable topics by talking about something else, or use euphemisms in place of specific words.

One more way (not the final way) that I’ll mention here is using action to share something. This would be a good place to use stage directions. If someone puts their arm around you, that can say so much, and of course, your reaction depends on the context of the action. 🙂

Try it! See what happens!

Final Reflections

Last week, I mentioned you need to create a chapbook of your work, and you need to write a Final Reflection to introduce the content of the work. Read the following information about what I’d like to see in this Reflection:

ENG1141 – Final Reflection

We are now at our final writing assignment of an incredibly difficult semester. I am so proud of you all for making it to this point. Now it is time for you, as the title suggests, reflect on your work over the semester. For this final assignment, reflect upon the following questions:

  • What have you learned about yourself as a writer this semester?
  • What have you learned about yourself as a reader this semester?
  • How will you be able to use what you have learned this semester and transfer that knowledge to other writing situations—either in college or in your community?

The Reflection is due with your Final Portfolio and should be a minimum of 1,000 words.

As a way to begin your Final Reflection, look back through all your work for this class: memoir, short story, poetry, dialogue, journal assignments, reflections, and so on. As you browse through your work, ask yourself about and take notes on the following questions:

  • How would you compare/contrast work done early on in the semester to now?
  • What was your favorite/least favorite assignment and why?
  • What are some notable lessons that have stuck with you after completing certain assignments?
  • What changed in your writing (and reading and thinking) as the genres changed?
  • What were your early assumptions/beliefs about yourself and writing? Have they since changed? Explain.
  • What was your experience revising assignments?
  • Was there any peer feedback that stands out to you and why?
  • How did you adapt to an asynchronous writing class? What were the challenges, if any?
  • What was particularly challenging for you in our course this semester and how did you overcome it (or attempt to)?

Don’t simply answer the above questions in your final reflection; they are just meant to help you brainstorm ideas. You don’t have to reflect upon each question, either. You may really have a lot to say about a few, and not much to say about others. This isn’t just you writing off-the-top of your head; this is a finished piece of writing. Treat yourself as a respected author who has lived through a difficult time: you are someone with something to say.

Here’s what I will be looking for:

  • Attention to audience. This essay will be the first item any reader will see in your Final Portfolio (aka Chapbook). This essay will set a “tone” for all the work that follows. Don’t just list off a bunch of random opinions about your writing—write about what you’ve learned.
  • Attention to organization.  This does not have to be a traditional organization, but you should have paragraphs (not just a giant paragraph, please) and some reason for why they’re in the order they’re in!
  • Care. Proofread. Make sure it’s long enough. As usual, you can use whatever language you see fit to use, but make decisions about your language—that is, the words that are there should be there for a reason.
  • It’s gotta be on time. I, personally, can’t give any leeway because I need to turn grades in for all classes very soon.

You’ll be sending this to your Cohorts for a brief review. There’s a document on the Assignment page for Week 16 as well as in the Course Profile page that I want you to use when you review your peer’s Final Reflection.

Chapbooks (aka the Final Portfolio)

If you haven’t read through the discussion of what the Final Portfolio entails yet, go to Week 15 (click here) and scroll down to where this is.

Be sure to check the Assignment page for Week 16 for due dates!


Student Evaluation of Teaching, otherwise known as SETs, have been sent out to your college email address. (Remember in the old days when a professor would give a big envelope to someone and then left the room? This is the same thing, only done electronically.)

The evaluation began last Monday, November 30,  and will continue through Friday, December 11, 2020.

An SET is a chance to share what worked in the class, what needs attention, etc.

1. Emails will be sent from Scantron to your campus email address.

a. Emails will be sent from:

i. Sender Name: NYC College of Technology Course Evaluations

ii. Address:

You’ll receive one email for each class you’re taking this semester, so if you’re taking five classes, you’ll get five emails.