Monday, March 21, 2005

Writing Class

It's true, but I hate to admit it. I'm taking a writing class. I'll finally learn how to write. I've always wanted to know. Just think, in two days I'll be a great writer. Wow, I'm already half way there. It'll be great to really know what I'm doing, or at least know what I'm doing wrong.

Today was the easy stuff, you know, outlining who you are writing for and why. Tomorrow will be tougher, it's on grammar. Maybe I no need dat stuff, huh?

Niki, our instructor, had some cool quotes:

"If you are happy with your job, you don't have to work a day in your life."


"If they complement you, it's fact. If they criticize you, it's just their opinion."

Neither were quotes she made up but were motivation quotes from others.

She does a lot of listening to self-help motivational tapes and CDs. She dedicates 15 minutes each day listening to these tapes. Of course, she needs to project a self-confident image. She's very engaging. Her body language reflects helpfulness, collaboration, and inclusion. In other words she's very interesting to listen to and you get the feeling that we are all learning together, including her.

She talked about the basic four types of people, Relators, Socializers, Thinkers, and Directors and why it's important to understand your audience before writing a word.

Since we talk to ourselves constantly, at least internally, it's important to have high self esteem. Otherwise our negative view of ourselves will come out in our writing, and few people like to be around or read negative people. I guess that's true. I just never gave it close consideration. That's why these classes are so good. They give you a chance to observe how you think and why, all within a safe environment.

I just remember reading in "On Writing Well" by Zinsser: "Easy writing, hard reading. Hard writing, easy reading." It takes effort to put together words and sentences that others enjoy reading. Regardless of the subject, my desire is to write well enough that people will become absorbed. The words should tell the story but not get in the way. I think it's like watching a movie, you should forget that all the people on the screen are acting. You should be sucked in and time should fly.

Tomorrow will be harder but maybe it'll make this blog easier to read, finally!

Writers would be warm, loyal, and otherwise terrific people--if only they'd stop writing. -Laura Miller from a review of the movie Finding Forrester