English 1010

Observation Paper

Save a Life in Your Spare Time

My first impression of this observation assignment was that it could be an interesting exercise in fleshing out a place so that it felt real and tangible. One of the things I struggle with in my personal fiction writing is making whole scenes feel real, I tend to gloss over the small details that can make a story come alive. This paper helped me focus on a small single event and make it more real through small details. I chose to post this paper because I feel it has helped me be a more involving writer. It has helped me focus on the interesting background images that make writing feel complete. I was lacking that before.

Rhetorical Analysis

Rally to Restore Sanity

I was not very enthusiastic about this paper when it was first assigned. I have enough trouble explaining my own words and thoughts from tine to time, and analyzing someone else’s speech was a daunting and intimidating task. The first hurdle I had to overcome was to find a speech that I felt strongly enough about to want to analyze it. I went through several, and when I found John Stewart’s speech I knew it was the one because he was giving voice to things I had felt for a long time. Once I had a speech that I believed in and agreed with, the process went fairly quickly. I choose this paper as an example for two reasons. First, the message of the speech needs to be understood and shared as far and wide as possible, hopefully if enough people agree, we can actually make a positive change. Second, it was a paper that I was dreading that I enjoyed thoroughly once I found the proper piece to work with. Keeping the topic something that matters to me makes the process much easier.

Research Project

Funding our Children’s Future

From the beginning, this paper looked like a very large project. When the class was told we would only have one paper for the rest of the semester, but that we would be working on it for over a month, none of us were terribly excited. But with the research journals and the weekly assignments that all lead up to writing the paper, everything flowed fairly smoothly. There were some hiccups along the way, problems with the interview and struggling to find topically relevant sources from both points of view. This paper let me take all the things I had learned in class, especially choosing a topic I care about, and utilize them all in a single project.

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