Del's Writing Blog... Abysmal First Drafts...

A place for you writers to complain about your writing and the writing process... maybe posting what you got done today to make you feel like less of a writing failure.

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Delaney
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 08, 2005 7:04 pm

I'm still having trouble moving forward but I did come up with a few ideas that may supplement my story. In any case, here is the least I will do tonight:

1. Finish article for Journalism class tomorrow. I may even post it here if I don't think it's too horrible, because I could use the feedback. The only grading is that we complete it, but it IS a grade, after all. Plus he wants to see where our writing skills lie.

2. Make out outline (however informal) and/or character descriptions... I really think my story relys on the characters, so I feel like I need to put them together better and see if I find anything about them that can contribute to the story.

3. Look over my very old poem that I wrote in my journal (my pen and paper/sketchbook one) and see if I can do something with it. I may post it if I get anywhere.

Whew... so now I'm off to start my article... I'm a bit nervous... but it must be done.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 08, 2005 7:44 pm

Finished my article... \:D/
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby Anblick » Thu Sep 08, 2005 7:46 pm

Which one was it: A, an, or the? OK, lame writer's joke... :roll:
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 08, 2005 8:01 pm

Ha ha... think you're REAL cute, don't ya? :P
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby Anblick » Thu Sep 08, 2005 8:05 pm

More like ruggedly handsome! :P
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 08, 2005 8:19 pm

To post or not to post... oh what the heck... I kind of wasn't sure if I wanted to but I may as well... for your questions, YES, I go to a Community College because we're not made of money here, and YES, I kind of pulled this thing out of my pretty little arse... no wise cracks... if you can't say something nice OR constructive, don't say anything at all...

The assignment was to interview people in the class (I interviewed 2) and try to find an article in the answers we got. It was pretty flexible. So here goes (btw I displaced the name of my school for obvious reasons... CC stands for Community College... and there are usually more letters in front of it :) ):

For many, Community College is a cost-efficient way to get a post high school education. There are brilliant teachers, many varieties of majors to choose from, and a certain freedom to explore one’s education that comes with CC’s economical figure.
John-Paul Vanasse, a 22 year old student at CC, has been taking advantage of his time here at CC to develop some personal growth as a writer. Although he does not see writing as necessarily a career for him, he enjoys the versatility CC offers to let him explore his interests and develop his writing skills.
Vanasse said that he was looking forward to going back to school this year but asked to be quoted as saying, “The price of gasoline will be my largest setback.”
People commute to CC everyday. Melissa Dearborn, 20 years old, of Chicopee stated that she commutes by bus. When asked how this compared to driving a car to and from, she informed me that the school gives a bus pass, and after that there is nothing to pay. High gas prices do not affect her. She does not have to wander about the parking lot using more precious gas trying to squeeze in close enough to the walk. Plus she gets dropped off right at the flagpole, which means fewer stairs to climb.
But there are pros and cons to both of these options. Dearborn says that while she does not have to worry about the expense of driving to school and back everyday, she also does not have the freedom to travel wherever she needs to go any time she wants to. Vanasse, and myself on the other hand, DO have this flexibility available to us. Yet, as costly as gas is steadily becoming, even that may be taken away from us. I remember being able to deposit $6 every morning for my gas tank (and cigarettes) and being able to get to school, back, and run short errands in my 6-cylinder Cavalier. Since school began this fall however, it takes about $10 a day to do all this.
And for those us whose jobs depend on a vehicle, this can become even more costly. As a delivery driver for the restaurant ‘WINGS’, I found that during the summer especially, it was costing more money to go to work than if I had stayed home without a job at all.
So what’s going to happen in the near future of commute? Will we be seeing more students take the bus? Will there be more than one designated “carpool lot” at CC? We can only wait and see.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby xcheck24 » Thu Sep 08, 2005 9:28 pm

hope you dont mind me criting, del! i may be rough, but these are things you will learn these style things and stuff as you go along and it'll become second nature! :)

Delaney wrote:For many, Community College is a cost-efficient way to get a post high school education.


Your prof is gonna say "who says many?"

There are brilliant teachers, many varieties of majors to choose from, and a certain freedom to explore one’s education that comes with CC’s economical figure.


he's going to tell you "brilliant" is an editorialization. You can say "experienced" and that is not such an editorialization.

And the name of the college should be spelled out on first reference (like if you were writing a story about UConn, you would call it University of Connecticut on first reference). you can then use the acronym on second reference, but MANY editors HATE alphabet soup and may sway you awya from doing that. so you can say "the college" on second reference instead of the whole name.

this happened with one of my editors. he hated P&Z instead of Planning and Zoning Commission, so I had to stop. I started calling it "the commission" instead.

John-Paul Vanasse, a 22 year old student at CC, has been taking advantage of his time here at CC to develop some personal growth as a writer.


first off, it's 22-year-old student, and take out one of the CC references. it's redundant.

Vanasse said that he was looking forward to going back to school this year but asked to be quoted as saying, “The price of gasoline will be my largest setback.”


Del, you have quote marks. You don't have to say "quoted as saying." ;)

People commute to CC everyday. Melissa Dearborn, 20 years old, of Chicopee stated that she commutes by bus. When asked how this compared to driving a car to and from, she informed me that the school gives a bus pass, and after that there is nothing to pay. High gas prices do not affect her. She does not have to wander about the parking lot using more precious gas trying to squeeze in close enough to the walk. Plus she gets dropped off right at the flagpole, which means fewer stairs to climb.


This could be tightened and changed.
"While people commute to CC every day, many are taking advantage of the bus passes provided by the school.
Melissa Dearborn, 20, of Chicopee, said she receives a fee bus pass so the high gas prices do not affect her."
And so on.

Vanasse, and myself on the other hand, DO have this flexibility available to us.


You have kept yourself out of the story to this point. If you are going to write a personal essay, it should be from the start. If you're writing an article like this, it should stay that way. :)

and it seems you switched topics COMPLETELY, del. you should stay with the same theme through the entire thing.

so that's my $1.25 ;)
I hope it helps!!
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 08, 2005 9:33 pm

It DOES help, and I was hoping you'd chime in... I figured I had alot to learn, and thankyouthankyouthankyou... hope we both see some improvement over the course of this semester :)

sidenote: I did put the full name of the college in my paper, just not in the post.
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Postby xcheck24 » Thu Sep 08, 2005 9:34 pm

ok, awesome :)
i wasnt sure. i just wanted to point that out to you.

there was another thing. what was it?
oh yeah, in lists in journalism you dont put a comma before "and."
you'll learn that when you have to take journalism grammar hell, tho.
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Postby Anblick » Thu Sep 08, 2005 9:37 pm

Funny, one of my pet peeves is it NOT being there, as it can often lead to confusion when not there, depending on the lists, but can never lead to confusion when there...
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Postby Sakkasie » Sun Sep 11, 2005 1:00 am

Del,

The only thing I found a bit confusing was that your essay started out being about the advantages of choosing a Community College but then veered off into gas prices. Personally, I would have chosen one or the other topic to write about.

Just my .02 cents.

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Postby Delaney » Sun Sep 11, 2005 6:06 pm

Yeah, I noticed that... and I kind of knew it when I wrote it, but I guess I just wanted to get the dang thing over with... couldn't decide which topic to use *sigh* I want to pick a new one, personally.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby Delaney » Sun Sep 11, 2005 8:54 pm

About.com has some pretty interesting stuff for writing... articles and so on...
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby Delaney » Wed Sep 14, 2005 9:36 pm

I love my classes, and my Journalism, and my Journalism teacher (mmm)... but assigning us to write an article about another outdated article in the book is just mean. Evil, even.

Or as Terry Pratchett would say, just bad manners... which is worse...

Sorry. Back on topic.

I have to write about a map. Dear God, what DID I do in a previous life to deserve this :cry:
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 15, 2005 6:28 pm

Pengwenn, your prompt was awsome. Because of it, I wrote 1,035 words!
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Postby Delaney » Sat Sep 17, 2005 10:40 pm

I didn't really do any writing this weekend, per se, as my mom would've given me a funny look if I suggested bringing the typewriter AS WELL as a separate bag for books... but someone FINALLY gave me some info on bubble maps... so I did start outlining my characters for the story... thought my wacky family could help me come up with a few names, but mostly they just annoyed me...
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Postby Delaney » Sun Sep 18, 2005 11:48 pm

Well, this is kind of a reading blog thing, as I haven't actually put time away to write out my thought but...

Reading Terry Pratchett (my new hero, in case anybody hasn't noticed) is helping me loosen my ideas when plotting my story. For one thing, the guy skips around to different perspectives alot, so he's never totally focused on one person, but a whole bunch of people and things happening that come together in the end. I usually have trouble running with ONE central focus and then after awhile the story just kind of... whittle away into nothing. I usually lose the subject I wanted to talk about. But NOW, after getting so used to the idea that I can really take the story wherever I want to go... I'm seeing all different subjects I've wanted to write about and really great ways to stick them in the SAME STORY... how do I explain myself? Okay, some may have read my contribution to Pen challenge right? So we begin with angels. Then guardian angels. Then Perc interacts with the guardians. Then he becomes one. But he's not an angel so this becomes a problem (on my little bubble map this is where I would spawn off a bunch of bubbles from the central bubble [labeled Perc As Guardian or something] and fill them with the difficulties he may face because of this). Then we can have him meet characters (character bubble), then go through some actual guardianing (is that a word?). THEN we can skip to the character he's assigned to. Well, now I can put in any struggle I want. If I want the character to be suidcidal, fine. Why? Well, that's ANOTHER story... see? I can go on and on...

Plus I can work through whatever personal thoughts I've been wanting to deal with... through the story. So I can really put alot of myself in it.

And I think if its well organized, it could work.
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Postby pengwenn » Mon Sep 19, 2005 12:05 pm

I do hope you write this story (or should that be stories). I really liked your protrayal of St. Peter and God and I've just got to know what's behind that door. It's piqued my curiousity so GO FOR IT GIRL!!!
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Postby Delaney » Wed Sep 21, 2005 1:15 am

I will pay special atten. to what's behind the door for you, Pen :-D I think you'll like it.

Writing... stupid... papers... for.... Mr..... Hot.... Stuff.... he'd... better.... be.... worth... this... crap.... I... do... for.... him.... at.... 2.... 14.... am.... before.... sleep... after... work...........

Oh. That wasn't a run-on was it? :-D
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 22, 2005 1:57 am

Well, aparently Mr. Hot Stuff wasn't happy with my 'essay'. I didn't even know it was SUPPOSED to be an essay. Loser.

But Mel and I did our article for Journalism today, and it was pretty good so he should be happy about THAT.
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Postby xcheck24 » Thu Sep 22, 2005 7:39 am

he's a loser because he crit'ed your essay? he's your prof, del! listen to what he says!
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 22, 2005 12:05 pm

I meant it in a NICE way...
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 22, 2005 7:17 pm

Mr. Man wants the FULL assignment, but said I can give it to him whenever I get it done... I'm going to have to do a bit of reading first to get the gist of what he wants. Its a Creative Non-Fiction assignment that we're supposed to write as if we're not involved. So I was supposed to observe someone closely and write about it. Well, I did that. But now I need to put it into an interesting story-type format... and I'm a bit lost. I wrote the first paper about the breakup. But honestly there wasn't much to observe... so I'm going to have to rack my brain. Or make it up. I believe that's a secondary option too.
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Postby Delaney » Sun Sep 25, 2005 11:37 pm

I hate writing these dang papers. Okay, that's not true. I'm good at most of them, but this one's been giving me trouble. We had to write about an 'observation'... basically we had to watch some people and try to find a 'dominent impression'.

It wasn't easy for me. But here's what I wrote anyway (code name Del, as we were originally supposed to leave ourselves out of it... I couldn't think of a better scene so I figured 'Del' would work since he only knows me as Claire). And for your veiwing pleasue, I present my crappy Creative Non-Fiction paper... :)

“I always wondered about that,” she said to him before going quiet again. Mark nodded absently as he ran a stop sign.
“Are you paying attention?” she asked him, leaning forward now to look at him as he avoided her eyes.
“Yeah. Yeah, I heard everything you said. I don’t get it either.”
“To the road?”
“What?”
“You ran a stop sign, Mark.”
“I did? Where? Back there?” He turned a bit in his seat.
The ride became silent. Mark bounced a little in his seat, but Del moved her body closer to the window, finger to mouth, staring at her own reflection in it. She put one sandled foot on the dashboard and sunk into her chair.
“I’m sorry for bringing this up again, but how could he have gotten away with such an atrocious idea? The Bible doesn’t even make note of how cruel it was.” She paused before sitting up again and crossing her legs. “Or maybe it does. I should reread it and make sure. It’s been a long time since I read that passage.”
“Yeah, good idea,” Mark replied.
“Well… what do you think?” she said turning back to him and watching his face imploringly.
“Um, well, I don’t really remember that story,” he replied. “You said he sent his daughters to…? Who was it?”
“Lot. Lot, Abraham’s brother.”
“And what did you say happened again?” Marks eyes squinted thoughtfully.
“ The prophets came to his house, and then evil men from the city told Lot to give them to the crowd. For rape. Instead Lot offered his daughters. I mean, why wasn’t he punished for that? How come the Lord still called him ‘righteous’?”
Mark shook his head. “I don’t know. I really don’t know,” he answered briskly.
Del sat back in her chair and sighed. Mark was traveling at 30mph again and she motioned with her hand waving for him to go faster.
He bounced in his chair again, and waited for what seemed a convenient moment before taking a breath. She looked over, sensing a response after the time he’d had to mull the subject over and provide a theory.
“You know what I just read in Hitchhiker’s Guide?” he said excitedly. “They were creating the new earth, and they needed water…” He rambled on as Del sat in confused silence and then a puzzled look on her face began transforming into anger as the monologue continued.
“Mark,” she began, nearly seething. “Were you even paying attention?”
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Postby Delaney » Thu Sep 29, 2005 11:48 pm

*sigh* well, if the reception on this site is any reflection of my grade to be... :roll:

My writing task for tomorrow: Transcribe a 3-minute conversation.

Dear Betsy, that's dull :roll:
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>

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