11/14: Pressing On

“The future rewards those whose press on. I don’t have time to feel sorry for myself. I don’t have time to complain. I’m going to press on.”–Barack Obama

Well, we’re pressing on in this class. We’re running out of time! Today we went over the rest of the semester. Next week is Thanksgiving (yay!) and then the following Wednesday the rough draft of your GWRJ is due.

I talked a little bit about Unit #2. I showed you an article I found about the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota. People there are protesting the construction of a pipeline, and people on social media are supporting the protesters (and attempting to thwart authorities) by “checking in” to Standing Rock. I thought it was a good example of writing on social media being used to raise awareness and create change, just like you were asked to do in this unit.

I also showed you the safety pin idea that’s making its way around social media, and we talked about how so many people are afraid after this election. The safety pin is a symbol people are wearing to show support for anyone in any community (LGBTQ, Muslim, African American, black, women, sexual assault survivors) that might feel afraid due to some of Trump’s campaign rhetoric.

I brought back the “single story” idea to remind us to keep from telling stories about people on the other side of the political spectrum (All Trump supporters are racists; all Clinton supporters want people’s guns taken away, etc). The whole thing is a big complicated mess, just like everything, just like writing. We have to be careful not to tell single stories about groups of people. We have to keep questioning and looking for deeper meanings, just as you were asked to do in Unit 2.

We then talked a lot about what the expectations are for your GWRJ article. I want you to thoroughly explore a type of writing that interests you. Research it. Write about your process and tell us what you found out.

I keep telling you I want you to have fun with it, and I mean it. We had a long talk about “page length” this morning. I am so not about page length, and you shouldn’t be either! Find something you’re curious about, investigate it, and write. Explain yourself and dive deeper in your project analysis.

We talked about how GWRJ articles don’t have typos and how they are written in complete sentences with proper punctuation. In order to write a strong GWRJ article, you will need to carefully proofread your work. I shared this quote from my former student Maddi Kartcheske: “I don’t know how you could feel good about turning in a paper that you haven’t read out loud at least once.” That’s so true, and some of the best paper advice I can give you. Read your work out loud, word by word (bird by bird). It helps you catch those little errors that your eyes skim over. It helps you realize when you’re not “sounding” right.

We will be having conferences on Wednesday. Come up to see me at your appointed time in 413T. We will not be having class. I want a chance to talk to each of you about how things are going.

For homework, read Emily Johnston’s article and take the homework quiz. It’s your last one!!!! :(