Reflective Essay On Shitty First Drafts

1324 Words 6 Pages
From the time I began writing essays for school, I was told that I had to write in the third person, write the complete truth, and stay on topic all the time. If I did not follow these questionable rules, the grade I received on the paper would reflect that in a negative way. I was trained to believe that each and every paper had a pre set structure and I had to stick to that structure. College completely messed that up. Works such as “Shitty First Drafts” by Anne Lamott and “On Keeping a Notebook” by Joan Didion were introduced to me and encouraged me to find my own style and stick to it. Anne Lamott’s“Shitty First Drafts” is about the writing process in general and how it is not only okay, but encouraged, that the writer creates multiple …show more content…
These two pieces forced me to see writing from a different angle. I could never write in the first person or with personal flare in high school. I was told that all of my essays needed to be clean and dry or my college professors will hate them. I was told that ‘I’ statements would result in points lost. I believe “Shitty First Drafts” and “On Keeping a Notebook” were great introduction pieces because they showed that college writing was not the boring, clean template I was told it was going to be. They encouraged me to drop what I learned and to start off fresh. Using personal voice and stories within my writing was never something I thought I would do. “Shitty First Drafts” validated my own writing process because multiple drafts is not something many people do. It allowed me to see that I was not weird for wanting to revise multiple times. “On Keeping a Notebook” showed me that a personal flare and some fun stories can make your writing come to life. They make the reader interested in what you have to say and not zone out as you repeat facts. “Shitty First Drafts” and “On Keeping a Notebook” both improved my writing style and process by making it a lot less rigid and more reader friendly. These two pieces had two different tones and moods but the same message and I really found that interesting. Lamott was fun and light while Didion’s was dark and sad. Lamott joked and played while Didion told her sad stories and discussed her notebook. They both talked about the writing process and how it should be for you and no one else though, just in different ways. Writing is about the author and what the author wants to get across to you and that is very much shown in both Anne Lamott’s “Shitty First Drafts” and Joan Didion’s “On Keeping a

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