Re: My Writing This Term
20 April 1999
So, in the end, what has this course done for me? It spured me to start three fiction works which I hope to return to, a number of poems, and given me an opportunity to continue some dramatic works which I might not have had time for if some other course were on the roster for this time period.
I think a part of my problem is that the course tries to cover three subjects, any one of which could easily have taken a term unto itself. Particularly with my fiction and drama, I would have found it more effective to turn in multiple drafts of the same work, receiving critical editorial feedback and then working in response to the feedback (This worked well for an expository writing course I took at Hunter University and again for a PlayWriting course I took here at Montclair).
Though Twist-a-Plot and similarly structured works are probably among my earliest enjoyed exposures to literature, it is not until this course for which I was inspired to write or work on one of my own. Although my Vacant Man project is currently at a standstill it is a project I hope eventually to resume. This course must be thanked for the impetus to begin that story. On a down note, however, I never received much critical editorial feedback to improve or continue the story. Perhaps this is my own fault for handing it in single spaced. Still, I had hoped for constructive criticism that would rip my work to pieces. I could then take or leave the feedback in bits and pieces as I chose, but it would have given me eyes towards what needs improvement and how to improve it. This course also inspired me to begin both The Elephant in the Brothel and The Emigrating Wall. But again the feedback I received was limited.
On another upnote, I accomplished some poetry for this course. These poems would never have been written if it were not for this course. I think there is something perversely delightful about those poems when I review them. Maybe it is just a sense of accomplishment mixed with pride over a few good lines.
As for the third portion, I came in with work that I wished to complete and with personal deadlines. I did get some usefull feedback for Dr. Silverstein from the class (such as about abortions and the woman's sexual baptism of the doctor) and that information has been sent forward to my friend Mark Hilton who is running the Dope Nazi project for which that belongs.
So, I feel I've accomplished quite a bit this semester and thank you for having me in this class.