At the beginning of this course, I severely doubted my writing skills. In fact, my father told me that he does not expect me to get an A in any writing course. However, throughout this course, I came to learn that it was not my writing skills that were the problem. Rather, it was my time management skills and confidence. Furthermore, learning online and lacking the in person experience affected my motivation toward academics greatly. In fact, it affected my overall demeanor. Despite this, I still learned many lessons throughout this course.
Before our first assignment, Professor Hoskins asked us to write down some writing goals and a memo for the semester. My memo reads, “Being honest I am not the best writer. I dreaded my lengthy research paper for high school every year because I was and still am a weak writer.” I also made it my goal to “touch” the reader emotionally, and be able to write powerful pieces. After this semester, I successfully wrote a touching piece to my high school softball team. Due to COVID, I was unable to live on campus this semester and fulfill my dream of playing Division 1 Softball, so I was hired to assistant coach my high school softball team. I became very emotionally attached to all the players and coaches, and at the award ceremony I had to give a speech thanking everyone for the opportunity to coach their daughters despite my lack of experience in coaching. As I was giving this speech, some of the players and parents began crying. While this was not my intention, I knew that I had successfully written an emotional speech. This growth in my writing is further displayed in my Commonplace Book entries.
Prior to my fifth entry, I had no clue what a Commonplace Book is. In fact, I treated it very similar to a diary that talked about impactful moments in my life. Through this I discovered the impact of photos. While photographs are not a piece of writing, they do express a rhetorical situation. For example, when my softball team won the state championship for the first time in school history, the Tampa Bay Times captured a photo of many players and coaches crying and embracing one another. The photo expresses a situation that touches the viewer. Through analyzing photography for my Commonplace Book, I fell in love with sports photography because there are often situations where you can not express the feeling through words. In sum then, my Commonplace Book helped me discover a new passion and hobby. I found these assignments very enjoyable to do, and I plan to continue doing this to analyze photography.
The Read, Write, Do assignments challenged me the most throughout this course because I do not enjoy reading, and these were often heavy reading assignments. Furthermore, reading comprehension is something I struggle with, so I would oftentimes have to re-read the passage to fully understand what the author was expressing. However, Boyle’s six step reading and analysis process helped me tremendously, especially the third step which was highlighting key terms. This helped me understand the rhetorical purpose of the piece, and be able to analyze it much better. Lastly, the essay for this course strengthened my writing skills because it pushed me to create a lengthy paper with a consistent argument. While the abortion debate could be an entire book on its own, connecting it to Fish’s Winning Arguments was difficult for me. However, I am very proud of my essay, and I am proud that I was able to write about a very controversial topic. In conclusion, WRIT-015 with Professor Hoskins greatly strengthened my writing skills and confidence in my writing due to the many assignments we had throughout the semester. This course truly embodied the ideology that “practice makes perfect.” While I am far from a perfect writer, I do believe that I became a better writer.