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Writing about writing

Posted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:41 am
by Elgaeoel
This is something I wrote two years ago. I was experimenting with different ways to express my own style writing (trying, perhaps, a bit too hard). In essence, it's about me being a shithead tenth grader who didn't like school, but hey, I was inspired...

Writing constantly changes as I travel through life. The writing that I have encountered has changed. The writing that I have created has changed. Starting slowly, it has passed from personal and entertaining to academic and erudite. Eventually all writing in my life became academic. The writing quality, like wine, has improved as time progresses. However, my personal experiences, like milk, have only ever become sourer.

“Today you will write a story.”
“About what?”
“Anything! Anything at all! The choice is yours.”

Where have those days gone? The days when I could write about what I pleased, read what I wished? The days when I could decide the length of a paper? The days when the teacher accepted whatever I wrote, just because it was mine? They are gone, vanished, disappeared, vamoosed. And what can I do about it? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. I am stranded in the desolate land of scholarly writing and reading. Those early days of writing were wonderful. I looked forward to writing, because it was all creative, and only creative. My ideas sped down on a fast track from my mind to the paper, unhindered, unedited, and unopposed. Flowers of imagination bloomed. Ideas dropped like ripened fruit from a tree. I was no Tolkien, or Bradbury, or Dickens, of course, but the best part was that it didn’t matter that I wasn’t! Without restriction, I wrote in a lush paradise of relaxation and calm. Reading was a release from the world, a land where I could lose myself in fantasy. Wizards and dragons followed me. Robots and artificial intelligences walked by my side. Then, I grew up.

“Today you will write a book report.”
“Which book?”
“Any book you choose, but it must a report.”

Beginning in fourth grade, my writing began to take an academic turn. Topics were chosen for me and guidelines were set out for me to follow. I was allowed some freedom, but the quality of my writing actually started to matter. Not the quality when seen from my eyes, however, but when seen from the teacher’s. My fruit was picked and chosen. They were not allowed to fall freely. My flowers were trimmed and pruned. Only a select few were allowed to bloom. Strangely enough, writing without guidelines is much more difficult for me now than it was before. I have been conditioned to write not from my heart, but rather from my brain. This, I cannot change. Fortunately, however, I was still able to choose the writing that I read. But that was like bittersweet chocolate. I could enjoy a small taste of freedom, but school always came right after.

“Your task is to write a report on how the archetype of ‘rags to riches’ presents itself in Charles Dickens’s Great Expectations.”

Now my writing is purely academic. Not most of the time, all of the time. It is similar to my fourth grade writing, but at a much higher level. There are no trees and no fruits. There are no flowers. There is a barren wasteland of broken dreams and discarded ideas. All that matters there are me, the desk, the paper, the pen, and the assignment, all in desolation and desperation. And this, sadly, has evolved into the norm. No longer do I write personally, for school has trained me to write academically. I do not take any pleasure in writing, for school has instilled a dislike of writing in me. My reading has turned into much the same. I read only what is given to me to read, for class. With everything else that I am doing now, reading for pleasure is out of the question, impossible, untenable. Even when I am able to, it is tainted. I cannot help but analyze the story, find parallels, and apply it to the world. I am bound to academics, like a prisoner is shackled to a wall. A fun story? No. A research paper. Reading for entertainment? No. Annotate. Analyze. Dissect. My brain controls all, my heart controls naught.

My imagination parted with my childhood, and why? School. My education has conditioned me to think analytically, and I have conformed to those teachings. I mourn the loss of my creativity, but, like Orpheus, I am afraid to even attempt to look back to see if it is still there, for fear that whatever I thought remained would disappear. Still, I maintain the hope that it can be revitalized in some way, any way. The scent of a rose, maybe. Or the taste of an apple.

Re: Writing about writing

Posted: Fri Sep 26, 2014 1:08 am
by Daniel Sun
Holycrap I love it! Really! Very dramatic which is perfectly fitting for a highschool student haha. I do hope you have that creative edge that you seemed to have lost. Would LOVE to read more recent work.