THE WORK OF WRITING: APOLOGIA PRO LABORA MEA

A “theme” or “composition” is a writing with a purpose, not necessarily to make a point or state a moral.  It could be a story (narrative).

An “essay” is a kind of “theme” or “composition,” with form and content–and a purpose.

(Blogs are “compositions,” of course.)

A writing course has a goal: to allow those enrolled to have the opportunity to do better writing than before.  It’s that simple.

Or, if not “better,” then to learn more than they knew before.  And, if they know it “all,” then to produce a product worthy of them, exhibiting knowledge and skills–and art.

Crafting an essay or theme or composition (or blog) is not easy for most.  Composing and writing this piece requires awareness of what has been learned and an ability to use drafting, revising, and proofing (editing) skills (to say nothing of using a keyboard on a computer, perhaps, even, to transcribe from a hand-written rough draft).

The basics of writing knowledge we learn by and through sixth grade–if all goes well.  After that, it’s a matter of chance and choice: having a good foundation, choosing to learn, having the opportunity to “get” learning, staying healthy, being subject to many other variables.

Note that all compositions reflect care, concern, and competencies:

Caring about self and goals

Concern for a subject

Competencies in language skills.

Bloggers must ask:

What do I care? What’s the point of doing this? 

Why should I do something “stupid”–ever?  Like write about a dumb topic I really am not concerned about?

Why should I care about my language or punctuation or spelling?  Do I really have to learn all the rules of such a difficult language?  Do I want to exhibit my confidence and competency–or ignorance?  (And who really cares about who and whom?)

The point to all of this:

Care

Concern

Competency.

It is as simple as that.

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3 comments
  1. I’m not too detail oriented, And am thus a horrible speller. Thank God for spellcheck!

  2. God I hate being reminded about my long tenure as a composition teacher (shudder). I used to tell them, ‘By now (college) you all know all there is about how to write. How come you’re not good at it yet?’ The answer — lack of interest/attention, waiting until the last minute and lack of practice. Personally, I don’t know why anyone would keep a blog, but I do, multiple blogs, some are private and then there’s the stuff on wp that’s public. But I’m a writer. I am still surprised that by the end of my career I hated them. My only thought was, “Why don’t you effin’ TRY?” If they did try, of course, I didn’t hate them any more. It was very sad when I realized I cared more than they did about their work.

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