E-portfolio Research

I chose t0 research three different e-portfolios and I identified two that worked really well and one that did not work as well.

Will Ruben’s e-portfolio felt very bland to me. There was a picture of him, which I think is critical, and clip art, but no pictures that I could identify with on the first main pages. I wanted to see pictures on these pages to break up the monotony that can come with words on a page. When he chose to put pictures in his “music tab,” he chose way too many and I didn’t know which ones to look at and kind of felt over stimulated. Through researching his, I now know the importance of pictures and how critical they can be if used in the right ratio.

I really liked Nina Steinberg and Brendan Montgomery’s work as they used a great balance of pictures and words. In addition, these also included introductions to the webpage which stated the purpose of their blog. More impressively, each blog had an explanation of the purpose before each writing piece they put on the blog. This made me more likely to read each of these pieces.

These sites allowed me to model my site after the characteristics that I liked. This will contribute to the my site being even stronger.


Project III Introduction

For those of you who unfamiliar with my Project II, I chose to remediate my “Why I Write” piece and researched why other people write and even read. This translated into a search for what other types of mediums people use to convey their own life. While the mediums were different, from writing to making music to even social media posts, one thing remained constant: the goal of inspiration and creating emotions in others. Each of the people I interviewed had seemed to find their own voice in the medium that inspired them the most, and were trying to share their feelings with the world through it.

As for project III, I have chosen to record my interviews with these three individuals and compile a formal and informative podcast. While the “raw data” is already there: the interviews. I still have a lot more work in researching traditional podcasts and allowing mine to fit their form. In addition, a great idea was proposed in my group meeting of creating a site to host my podcast. This site will feature an “about me” page and also a brief page that will explain the intent and purpose of my podcast. allowing the potential listeners to be more informed before beginning to listen.

I am very excited to begin my research and creation of the new page, and looking forward to sharing it with you all.

The State of my Project II

I have decided to follow my original idea to interview different college students and ask how other people’s writing influences them and how they can relate to the journalist. I debated about gathering a little data from a lot of people, or a loot of data from a group of people, and I believe that the latter option will more accurately allow me to understand these people’s influence and how they continue to view writing today. I have already completed two interviews, one specifically on writing, and another with an aspiring DJ who told me how he tells his stories through his music.While it was unintentional, it has been very interesting to see how different people use different mediums to tell their stories. I have very recently set up an interview with a student who specializes on social media and documenting new trends and updates on social media. I am looking forward to seeing how he explains social media to be an effective, or not as effective way to tell stories and to exhibit one’s voice due to the many limitations. I would say that there have mainly been successes, and while many technological pieces still need to be refurbished and I look forward to writing my paper on this for project II, I believe I am in a great spot and can’t wait to move forward.

Examining Project 2– My Research

For my project two, I will be completing interviews of college students asking them about their connections with the pieces that they read, specifically newspaper articles. I will also be interested in seeing if this differs from novels and also research how college students react to the words of musicians through their music. I feel that these all are one in the same, how other peoples words make us react and feel.

I am taking a research methods class and we have read numerous articles about how to successfully create and execute surveys and interviews. I have re-read these for the purposes of this project, and look forward to executing their recommendations.

One aspect of my project that has required the most research, is where to publish my research. In our group meeting, some informal outlets, such as The Tab, were recommended, but throughout my research I have decided to seek a more formal outlet. I have decided that the opinions section of the Huffington Post and the Michigan Daily are optimal places for my work.

An Interview with William Styron, and His Advice

Upon looking up the different writer’s interviews, I found some familiar authors, such as Toni Morrison and Stephen King, but once I began to read their interviews, I connected with some things and felt lost when they were referencing books in which I had not read. So, I decided to choose a writer that I hadn’t necessarily heard of before and try to learn his style and why writing is important to him. That was when I found William Styron.

At first, I could relate to his relationship with music and how it spurns his creativity and can affect his mood. Styron credits his love of music as being the force of his life allowing him to write. While I don’t credit music being the force allowing me to write, I believe music can fill people with passion and have the ability to change the mood of people. I use music when I am feeling a little stressed out or upset to uplift my spirits as I become much happier after.

Aside from our common interests, what really drew me to read this interview was how it ended. Styron ends his interview by giving young aspiring writers advice on how to become a successful writer. His first point is, “a writer must have read an enormous amount by the time he begins to write.” This point pertains to me so much that I spent the majority of my “Why I Write” piece talking about it. I grew up reading the sports page every morning and really enjoyed reading different columns by the same journalists every day; it was not because I needed to catch up on the game the night before, I had already watched that. It was because I really enjoyed the voice in which each of the journalists wrote in. I felt that I was picking up on a recent dialogue, between us, when I opened the paper and read that day’s column. I admired, and still look forward to, reading the homely and friendly tone of Paul Daugherty every morning and his opinions about the sports world, but also society in itself. Reading developed my will to find my own voice in writing, one that I hope to inch closer to while completing the minor.

The next step, according to Styron, is that “you must love language… cherish it, and play with it and love what it does” That was followed by, having “passion and [a] vision.” I believe that all of us in the minor cherish language, because it has affected us all enough to develop our on desire to write. This course will serve as the platform to play with language and provide us an opportunity to not worry about writing to appease a teacher, but to focus on becoming better writers and finding each of our own voices.

The Impact of the Advice on Me

One key aspect of my “Why I Write” essay is that I am on a continual search process to find my own, unique writing voice. I grew up in a house that always had the sports section in the driveway on my ride to school, and I began reading all the sports columns that I could. Immediately I picked up on the voices of these journalists and demanded that I wanted my own. That was in elementary school. I still am on the search. I appreciated the advice from Shannon Vail’s “Advice” to try something new in this course. In the past, I have written with the hopes of achieving a certain grade, thus haven’t had the opportunity to search for my voice, because I was not willing to struggle and have that reflected in my overall grade. Now, I have finally found the place to do the search, the minor.

Another aspect of the advice that stuck out to me in Kelly Hall’s “To the Minor in Writing Youngins,” was to look for help during the writing process. Many times academia can be such a competitive process, it will be relieving to all work together to benefit each other’s writing. This is true of peer reviews. I enjoyed how prevalent peer-review process advice was in the blog posts. Through reading Chamberlain’s article and now the numerous blog posts, I will not only look forward to my work benefiting, but also hope to gain a new insight into writing through other’s work.

This advice, not necessarily the way it was framed or said, but the advice itself gives me a new insight on writing and allows me to look forward to future essays to implement these tactics.

Linking Writing to Where it’s Important- Home

0611880Growing up in a medium sized, baseball crazed town of Cincinnati, I really had little choice of how I would spend my free time. Some of my earliest memories are at the Opening Day Parade in which the city practically closes down every year to commemorate the start of a new baseball season. For those that are unaware, the Cincinnati Reds were the first professional baseball organization and, to commemorate that, open the season at home every year. This oddity, along with the false hope that our team will do anything positive in the upcoming season captures my midwestern town every spring.

I guess you could say that baseball, or more specifically, sports were the reason that I was determined to read. I wanted the full scope of each game and the stories behind the game that often fall through the cracks. I grew up reading Enquirer writers John Fay and Paul Daugherty. I also enjoy sports radio, an extension of writing, in which opinions are pivotal. Currently, I enjoy listening to Rich Eisen and even podcasts like the Lowe Post to get my in-depth sports journalism.

While I appreciate blogging and other types of sports journalism, I especially enjoy writing. I look at writing as an opportunity to allow the outside world to hear my opinions on any topic that I choose to write about. I especially enjoyed being the sports editor for my high school newspaper and writing a sport ethics blog last winter. My writing process follows a strict pattern. I prefer to write the whole piece in one sitting, without making any edits. It is in this frame of mind, not worrying about making mistakes or even about writing a terrible piece, that I do my best work. No mater the assignment or activity, when I leave my anxiety out of the process and only wory about what I am doing at that moment, I do my best. Upon leaving my work for a couple of days, in essence taking the emotion out of it, I began to edit.