Challenge Post Three: A Shift in Path

I think a lot of people have felt similar about this, but I need to get some of this off of my chest! SO, I am in the midst of my project, and I have definitely taken a sharp turn. I thought I was talking about Beyoncé as a an icon, but I am really talk about how she has shifted her audience to cater to a wider demographic which makes her more famous. While they sound hand-in-hand, they really aren’t! I’m concerned/excited for what’s about to come. It’s scary, but after our recent class I have learned that it is okay to shift paths.

I am having the same feeling as I did in my writing gateway in our repurposing section. In my original work, I wrote a research paper about food trucks– it was extremely cookie-cutter.

Here’s a part of it:

“With recent technologies, restaurants have been able to capitalize on social media advertisement, and food trucks are following with the same technique. The recent food truck phenomenon has made me question: why do food trucks flourish in metropolitan cities, like LA and San Francisco?”

Then, I broke the essay down into sections about social media, economics, and culture. Not very exciting, but I needed an interesting topic to keep me motivated for ten pages.

For my repurpose, I was nervous, but I completely reworked this piece. In the second work, I wrote about how food trucks were an obsession and the hash tag was the central idea of this industry. I took one part of the huge research essay and expanded it.

Here is a sample excerpt:

“On the side of each truck there was a creative hashtag or an Instagram handle, which basically screamed at the consumers “FOLLOW ME.” As the consumer, a hashtag for a restaurant was a common advertisement, and at this point in society, practically a formality. However, to the food truck industry the beloved hashtag means everything to the trucks’ production, sales, and marketing all together.”

One thing I am struggling with is how to rework some of my introduction to fit my new idea. I’ve been doing a lot of cut and pasting, and I have started to realize something. Sometimes, when I cut and paste intensely I produce some of my best work. It’s kind of weird how a sentence can fit perfectly in one context and perfectly in another.

That’s a whole other problem though.

I don’t want my writing to be too basic, so my sentences should not be so readily able to be cut and pasted into new paragraphs. Ray spoke to us about how each sentence needs a place and a purpose. This has brought me down a well-known path that we all need to confront:

rewriting.

I am currently rewriting. A lot. And while at times it is useful, other times I feel like I am scrapping good material because I do not know where to put it anymore. Has anyone been in a similar situation? What do you do when you still love certain prose, but you no longer have the exact basis to use them? This is kind of a broad question, but maybe someone out there is having a similar predicament. I was considering including a section where I write about my process and how I got here.

2 thoughts to “Challenge Post Three: A Shift in Path”

  1. Hi Jennifer,

    It sounds like you have a project you are very excited about! As far as changing paths go, I wouldn’t worry about that at all. For my capstone project, I have bounced around from idea to idea, each time developing something further. I think shifting your project in this way will only enhance your final work.

    It also sounds like you are spending a lot of time on your prose and how your project is organized. First of all, I wouldn’t delete anything for good. I would recommend saving each draft individually and having that ability to always come back to certain prose. I think writing about your process would also be very fascinating and something people would enjoy reading as part of your final website. Maybe even including all these drafts as well.

    A question I can pose to you moving forward is: when you re-write each time, are you taking a step back and looking at the big picture first? Sometimes it can be easy to get caught in each sentence, but perhaps you can first ask yourself, “what is it that I want to say?” And “how do I want to say it?”

  2. Hi Jennifer,

    It’s a great idea to work the shift into your project. The flow from what you thought you were writing about to what you’re actually writing about seems really clear to me. Why Is Beyonce an Icon? Because She Caters to a Wider Demographic. That’s an interesting frame to put your project in. I’m sure most audience members recognize Beyonce as an icon, but they’re less aware of how she got there.

    As to what you should do with prose you like that isn’t completely relevant- you might just have to get rid of it. Keeping paragraphs that are written well, just because they’re written well, might be hindering you from exploring this new frame completely. If it seems out of place, it probably is.

    Good luck!
    Emily

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