A Date to Remember

We pulled up to the restaurant, the parking lot was packed with cars. It was a bit of a shock because on a normal weeknight this would have been empty. I looked over at my date. He smiled.

“Maybe we should have gotten reservations?” He said with a nervous laugh. I looked down at my hands, they were shaking, I was nervous.

“I’m pretty sure they do not normally take them.” I replied.

We walked into the building and were greeted with a longer line. He walked up to the hostess. I pushed my hands against my jeans and waited to see what would happen.

My date came back with a smile on his face, “It’s only a fifteen minute wait.”

I nodded. I scanned what I could see of the room. Every table was filled with an even number of people. This is what Valentine’s Day looks like at the only restaurant in the county.

Soon it was our time to sit. As soon as the waitress took our order, conversation just flowed. We talked about everything, from childhood memories to opinions on the current popular songs. I realized how easy it was to talk to him and my heart pounded on, faster. Is this what I think it is? Could this be?

Before I knew it we had finished our food. The waitress came up to our table. “Your meal has been paid for, would you like dessert?”

I couldn’t believe it, had someone seen what I had thought? Who was this kind person? Where were they sitting? I looked at my date, my wide eyes and mouth open were mirrored in his face. I couldn’t believe it.


We got lucky this first Valentine’s Day date. Four Valentine’s Days later, we have yet to repeat getting our meal paid for by some kind soul. But those feelings I felt haven’t gone away. We got lucky that first V-Day, but I am lucky every day with Joel by my side.

 

Joel and I, Cru’s Christmas Formal 2016

The Process of an Average Writer

In fourth grade, was an avid reader. I read book, upon book, upon book. I would get in trouble for reading in class and stay up all night reading. I’d show my teacher passages I found beautiful or funny (probably much to her annoyance.) Naturally, I soon picked up writing. After this discovery of writing, everything changed to the words that I wrote. I’d write story, upon story, upon story. I would get in trouble for writing in class. I’d write in my blue spiral notebook until late into the night. These stories were never anything special, just princess tales and large animals out to eat humans (think Johnathan Rand.) In the many years since the days of Mrs. Brock’s fourth grade class, I have refined my writing through both the quality and the process.

When I first start writing a paper, I try right off the bat to write an introduction. While maybe I do not have an idea as to where I am going to go in the paper, I find that it helps me get started with thinking about the many ideas I have for the piece. I sit down at my desk, my laptop open in front of me and just type. After this, if I’m having a good writing day, I will continue. On these good writing days, inspiration has hit and I can write to my heart’s content. My fingers fly across the keyboard as sentence after sentence comes spilling out of my brain. On my bad days, my brain scrambles for the next word in the sentence and I inevitably end up deciding to wait for another day. I am not a procrastinator, when it comes to papers, so this (normally) is fine.

The second draft of the paper goes into a new document where I start cutting and editing word after word, sentence after sentence. I ask the questions; “What if I moved that to a new spot?”; “How can I expand upon or explain this better?” I try to rework the writing into a more cohesive paper, especially if it was written in more than one day. I play no music while I write, it distracts me and makes it difficult for my brain to find words. The final draft is where I decide where my edits helped and where they hindered. This sometimes means reverting back to something in an older draft and sometimes means reworking a newer one. Overall, I find that this helps me understand what works and what does not.

I remember back in fourth grade, writing my stories, thinking that once I had finished a draft it meant it was done and ready to be published. That everything I wrote was worthy of a gold medal and if turned in would result in a “job well done.” Over the years, I have learned that the gold medal pieces come from gold medal effort and that “job well done” isn’t the same thing as a good product of writing. My writing habits are no longer jotting down “And then, and then, and then” sentences, they’ve evolved to multiple word documents and no music playing. The quality of my process has greatly increased.

Try and find fourth grade me!

Writing 220 Introduction: Adele Gendron

Hello, it’s me, Adele Gendron. Besides having the same name as a famous singer, another fact about me is that I am sophomore here at the University of Michigan majoring in Communication Studies. I have always had a passion for writing, whether that be for school or pleasure. When I heard about the Minor in Writing program, I knew it would be a good match.

Portrait by Kristen Elizabeth Photography

Why I chose the Minor in Writing?

Writing has always been a part of my life. Growing up in the beautiful Upper Peninsula of Michigan, I would write stories of summers filled with tourists and life on the lake. I loved translating what I saw into words and what I felt into sentences. This became part of my academic work as well. After I am given a prompt, I start to have strong feelings about what I will write. I have found that both academic and creative work is therapeutic for me.

However, I didn’t chose MiW solely because of the therapy sessions it will give me. With my major and future career, writing will no doubt be a part of the job, whether that writing comes in the form of communications plans, blog posts, tweets, or reports. My hope is that the Minor in Writing will better equip and grow my writing in these areas.

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore (right in my hometown)

Inspirations?

My list of inspirations could be very long and I will not bore you with it. But I look up to authors such as J.K. Rowling, Margaret Atwood, Jennifer Brown, John Green, Lois Lowry and Madeleine L’Engle. Just to name a few. I adore musicals such as Hamilton: An American MusicalNext to NormalAnnie, and more. I’m also very much into films, to the point of having competitions about who can guess the most wins correctly at an awards show. Favorites include Whiplash, UP, Short Term 12, and The Little Mermaid. I love how a movie, book, or musical can take you to a place you have not experienced and tap into emotions you didn’t know were there.

Portrait ft. HP by Garnet Photography (Sarah Schultz)

What I Do?

Here at UMich, I am involved in the Christian organization Cru. In this group, I serve on the Social Media Team as the Instagram Manager (follow @michigancru for more.) If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about this organization head to michigancru.com or come to the Union Ballroom on Thursday night at 8pm! Besides Cru, I enjoy spending time with my friends, being the world’s hungriest picky eater, wandering around the botanical gardens, and volunteering.

Cru’s All Campus Gathering, every Thursday night at 8pm
Botanical Gardens!

 

 

For Now,

Adele Gendron