My goals for Thanksgiving break were as follows:

  1. Read two books
  2. Write some stuff in my journal
  3. Work on editing my podcast for the Remediation project
  4. Get 10 hours of sleep a night

What I did over break:

  1. Binge watch the new Netflix original serious Jessica Jones
  2. Eat my weight in stuffing
  3. Let my computer die and used that as an excuse not to get any work done

So, I’ll be doing a lot of writing in the coming weeks. And a lot of staring at my computer as I attempt to assemble a stylish, professional, and hip eportfolio. And editing. I have a lot to do.

The biggest and most intriguing challenge I’ve been facing in regards to my Gateway writing is how to integrate myself into my podcast. This might seem a little odd, since it’s my¬†podcast and I facilitated all of the interviews, but I feel like anything I have to say in comparison to the wise words of my mentors would be irrelevant or redundant. I feel like I need to strike a balance between conversational and authoritative. I feel like I achieved that balance in my writing in my Repurposing project, but it’s been more difficult to find it (the balance) in speech.

I think this is because in speech I’m a lot more polarized: I’m either very formal or very informal. I feel like there’s less with me to work with, because I can’t physically manipulate words as they come out of my mouth. My goal for this aspect of the remediation project (the part where I have to speak my feelings into a microphone, without interruption, for multiple minutes) is to not think too much and not try so hard to manipulate words to do exactly what I want them to do. I can always re-record after a bad take. It’s only a rough draft, after all.

Drafting and revision have both been on my mind a lot this semester, especially in relation to this class. I feel like I could go back to anything I’ve ever written and find a new way to present the argument, or structure a sentence, or address the audience. 220 taught me that no piece of writing is ever truly complete. Writing, although very fixed in its physical form, is hardly stagnant. It swells and bends with the perspectives it encounters and hits each mind at a different angle. I think that’s why I’m so eager to revise now, more so than ever before.

Hopefully all of this waxing poetic will result in a halfway decent Remediation draft.


Emily Cotten

Emily Cotten is a sophomore Vocal Performance major at the University of Michigan. She hails from North Carolina and enjoys reading, writing, and blasting opera hits in her car while driving down the highway.

One thought to “Goals”

  1. Emily,
    You’re not alone in attempting to be ambitious over thanksgiving break; I too had an extensive list of the things I wanted to get done but did not accomplish. One of those was starting a 14 page research paper that was due Thursday; so yeah, had to do a lot of writing this week haha. Anyway, I too am often polarizing with my diction; either I sound like a sophisticated intellectual or a babbling baboon, there is no in-between for me. You say that there is not much for you to work with in solving this problem due to the nature of a podcast, but I disagree; you could always write a script for said podcast and rehearse it. Speaking said script aloud would allow you to determine if certain words or phrases fit the style of speaking you’re looking for; if it does not fit, then you can simply edit said script. I know it’s more writing, but I feel like the result will undoubtedly pay dividends for you when you complete your remediation task.

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