Blog 9: A Sympathetic Writer

I think I’ve discovered a lot about myself as a writer this semester. Although I was somewhat aware of several of these things when I decided to apply to the minor, through the drafting and creation of the pieces this semester, the readings I’ve identified with and my personal experience with publications outside of this course, I’ve come to believe I’ve really gotten a much better idea of what kind of writer I feel I am and what kind of writer I aspire to become. Originally, I thought I had read Orwell’s piece for a different class, but after reading through it again I don’t think I have because I resonated with a lot of his points, and they were things I’ve never thought about before. I really connected with his four proportions of writers that, he states, vary in different degrees from writer to writer. As a person, I’ve noticed I’m not the most comfortable preaching or promoting political statements, and this is definitely reflected in my writing. I have a hard time trying to convince people to see the world in a certain way, but rather, I like to point out things that are there, but that aren’t always recognized by everyone. These things differ in that one tries to move people to think or believe a certain thing and the other simply places what they are already aware of in front of their own eyes.

I’ve realized that I really try to relate to people through my writing, and I definitely think that is reflective of who I am as a person. If I can bring attention to things people are already aware of and have these things resonate, I feel I’ve done my job. I think this is part of the reason it’s hard for me to try to convince people to believe or act a certain way because as a person, I don’t operate like that. Instead of trying to move people to believe or act in a way they don’t want, I would much rather take the time to understand them and try to relate to where they are coming from. I guess I’m kind of a sympathetic writer because I’m somewhat of a sympathetic person. Even the pieces I did for my repurposing project (5 Types of Funny Guys You’ll Date in Your Lifetime and Using Humor to Cope) attempt to relate to people who identify with humor as a subject. I’m not trying to convince anyone that they should be using humor to cope, and I’m not telling people they all need to date funny men, but I’m attempting to speak to those who already feel like they can connect with the subject matter. I’m attempting to articulate and speak to those who already recognize/ have had experience with these things, but just haven’t realized how it could be put into words.

Rebecca Soverinsky

Rebecca is a Junior (please send help for her mental state in accepting this and a walker for her aging body) studying Communications at the University of Michigan. She believes award show season is the best season (shout out to E! News) and is always willing to take on a challenge or learn something new- as long as there is Nutella involved. She hopes to learn as much as she can from the Sweetland Minor in Writing, and she's excited to see what's in store.

2 thoughts to “Blog 9: A Sympathetic Writer”

  1. Hi, Your comment on how taking the time to understand and relate to people really resonated with me. I definitely think that’s what writing is all about. As writers, we arrange, rearrange, and then arrange words again to express ourselves in the most efficient way possible. In sensitive situations, we have to phrase our words exactly to walk that fine line of being blunt yet emotionally sensitive. Communication is hard. People misunderstand, become insulted, interpret things differently from what us writers mean to say. But by seeing things from our reader’s perspective, hopefully we can anticipate their reactions and address counter-arguments ahead of time.

  2. Hi Rebecca,

    I love that you, as you put it, refrain from pushing a political agenda onto your readers, but instead “like to point out things that are there, but that aren’t always recognized by everyone.” I think it’s funny, because this is what lots of politicians strive to do (and regularly fail, instead falling waaaaay over into the preachy category), and in my opinion, a passive approach such as that is way more rhetorically sound than hammering the audience over and over again with your points.

    On a bigger picture note, I’m glad to see that this class is helping you learn something about yourself as a writer (an experience that I think we’re all starting to share with you). As an avid writer, I can say that without a doubt some of the most important experiences in my life have been graduating from a writing course actually feeling like I’ve learned something about myself as a writer and am better for it, not just having written a few papers and gotten good grades. And it seems like this class is shaping up to be one of those experiences, not just for me, but for all of us.


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