I think that the photo essay genre is appealing to me because I appreciate the interactive nature of it, while leaving little to be interpreted by the audience. The image makes it easy for them to visualize exactly what is going on, and the words allow you to persuade the audience that what is in the image connects to the problems that are present directly. If I were to fully realize this project, I think it would effectively blend credibility and logic to successfully allow the audience to recognize the issues at hand. During the proposal stage I actually envisioned the project turning out well because it squashed all issues I had in prior experiments, while, at least superficially, not bringing forth new issues. My origin piece was a research essay about cycles of criminal activity, so the direction I’ve gone in has made it more of a casual life lesson that is more relatable for the typical viewer. I left behind the formal persuasive nature of my origin piece, and instead have chosen to persuade using reasoning and logic to replace facts and statistics that were initially incorporated. Although I felt nonfiction made my point feel serious and real, the relatability was low as it only applied to a small subset of the population in the United States. If I were to fully realize this experiment, I would need to learn about the most effective ways to tie up my words with the picture. Is the picture there to allude to or is it supposed to be a visual that gets the audience thinking prior to reading the words? It would also be necessary for me to make my verbiage sophisticated in order to establish myself as an intellectual source to speak on my topic. I have already taken the photo that I feel best represents the issues that I touch on, and have received my subjects permission to use it in my piece. The ethical issues behind using another person’s problem in a public piece were something I needed to consider, but after discussing with him it seems as though he approves of me using the topic as a means of making my point. If I were to publish this piece, I would likely do it on the website of a news source. This is where I found all of my mentor pieces, and is a place where I would have built-in credibility that would establish me as reliable in spite of my age. It was crucial for me to go through the process of planning experiments one and two in order to work through the kinks and come away with an understanding of the struggles I would face in the process of producing a piece that effectively released my message. All in all, contrary to my initial thoughts, it helped me to outline multiple genres, as I was surprised to find that my first two choices would have come with great obstacles that I did not see prior to going through the experimental process.
I enjoyed researching and learning about the fiction genre. Going through this experimental process allowed me to realize the immense freedom that comes with writing within the fiction genre. The creativity the author is afforded makes it appealing in that it can be tailored perfectly to the writers style, being that the story and themes can be produced out of thin air with any reasonable or unreasonable basis. When I considered an open letter for my last experimental piece, I began to realize how detrimental to my argument it would be for the audience to know that a 19 year-old student with no experience in what he was discussing would be to the points I was trying to make and have heard. I think that while this genre has addressed my biggest concern writing about this topic, it does bring a new issue to the forefront. The story I am writing is fictional now, and fiction carries less realism than an open letter. My story will be made up, and my audience will know that, so instead of narrating a true story with real-life implications, I’ll be discussing a fictional story with themes that may not be taken seriously by an audience reading for entertainment purposes. I’ve left behind numerous aspects of my origin piece, most notably the reversal from nonfiction to fiction style writing. This has decreased the seriousness of my ideas, yet added a level of entertainment and youth to my stories. If I were to fully realize this genre, I would certainly need to learn to toe the line between making my story feel plausible yet keep it entertaining in an effort to subtly unleash my themes in the mind of the audience. I would also need to learn to write in a manner that appeases all audiences and a storyline that could be understood and related to by all types of audiences with a wide array of demographics. If I were to publish this piece, I believe the best step would be to find a true story that intrigued me, and base my fictional story off of it. This would provide a realistic feel and idea of relatedness in my story. I feel as though my story would be best understood in books if it were published. This would add a sense of novelty, and thus realness to the readers. This style of writing is far different than the open letter I explored for experiment one, and has allowed me to realize that my status as a 19 year-old prevents me from being able to deliver a logical argument regarding a phenomenon that I had never experienced. I look forward to the third experimental piece because my experiences with this experiment taught me that despite my positivity in regards to my idea, there are flaws I can recognize after being exposed to a more cohesive genre. My ability to adapt as a writer to changing genres hopefully can result in a final piece that reflects the culmination of my efforts.
I had a positive experience going through the experimental process for the open letter genre. I learned about the formatting and necessities of this genre, which is unique in that it is rather informal. This letter can be taken in nearly any direction the author chooses. This is because it lacks a basic structure. The letter is generally addressed to a specific group of people, but because it is published in a place that is accessible for all, it will have various audiences aside from who it is addressed to in the opening of the letter. The primary reason I do not love the open letter genre is that the audiences that read the letter often will not be addressed, and thus will not read it carefully like those who it is addressed to. If I had fully realized my experiment, I think project would not have panned out as well as I thought it would. I do not think I accounted for the idea that parents likely would not want to hear criticism from a 19 year old kid who has no experience parenting. My lack of credibility in this department makes me a source who won’t reach parents as well as others would. I think I could’ve written an inspired piece about how strongly I feel about this matter, but would it mean anything if I did not have the ethos to consider myself a source that adults with more life experienced than me should listen to? I think that my origin piece gave me great inspiration to aim to recreate my topic in a new genre. After writing that piece, I began to realize that the themes I touched in throughout my piece were more universal than I thought. They applied to far more than the world of crime. I realized, fairly easily, that cycles took place in all aspects of life, and they do not get enough attention for how ever-present they are in every person’s life. I left my origin piece behind most clearly by deciding to rid it of all statistics, as my piece is based on my experiences, and my observations which I decided to use as evidence. I did this because I feel that when discussing a theme-child care- that appears in every family, or another common group such as that, it is more important to connect with the readers rather than throw facts at them. I would need to be able to connect directly with my audience in each segment, which I would do by using personal words consistently, such as “you,” which will help the audience feel involved in the narrative I have shared. I would consider publishing a piece like this on a blog because I feel that the themes of it are important to be heard, even if by a college student who has never experienced the role he is writing about. The piece would be very informal but I appreciate my work more when it has my voice strongly implanted in it, and opinionated pieces like that do not lack my voice within them.
Jessica Coleman is not a full-time writer. Instead, she is a social media/PR consultant, who writes on the side. Perhaps her social media skills explain why her website page is so organized and simple to navigate for viewers.
My writer conducts research by using her experiences to formulate an idea, and observing the world around her to use as evidence and examples to support her argument. She publishes on “Thought Catalog,” a blog featuring works of many categories and genres. When she has an idea, she looks within nature and the ongoings around her for evidence. She then writes these observations down and decides what direction she would like to take her argument. She then has an editor looks through her piece to finalize it, which then sends it to the final stage, when Jessica reviews it and goes ahead with publishing it onto her page. Jessica enjoys writing her posts about lifestyle, where she can express her experiences and findings into a succinct post that offers advice and motivation for the people reading it. Jessica only writes about lifestyle for the blog, as this is her specialty area. Within “lifestyle,” however, she is offered freedom to create posts using various formats and numerous topics. She basically can write about her experiences in life freely, which is what she enjoys doing in the first place. She does not get paid, as she does this as a hobby on the side of her real job doing social media/PR consulting.
My name is Jared Bartman, and I’m a sophomore here at the University of Michigan. I grew up in Westchester New York, and grew up a Wolverines fan. I’m studying Health and Fitness in the school of Kinesiology. I grew up writing fictional stories that were inspired by my daily experiences and the fantastical ideas that I wished could happen within them. I joined the minor in writing hoping I can continue to improve upon my writing skills, and rediscover the passion I had for it when I was younger. I also hope to figure out what writing I excel in to determine my identity as a writer.
The piece that I’ll be using this term as my origin piece is one I wrote for English125 my freshman year. This research essay aimed to pinpoint how big of a role circumstances play in the development of criminals from an early age. This felt like a good piece for me to start with because I had never written a research essay, and generally prefer to write out of experience, which is why I’m intrigued to see how the compilations of stories I know regarding this topic will help me piece together this idea from my own lens. I did appreciate the fact that producing a nonfiction research essay was appropriate for this topic, as it can be explained through facts and statistics, however, I believe this topic can be captivating to numerous audiences when discussed through a collection of true stories. I hope that I can uncover the genre that will help this piece shine and allow the audience to connect with it in a way that can’t be done with a nonfiction piece that encompasses little for the reader to relate to.