Academic Writing Assignment

For the academic writing assignment I was tasked with choosing a movie or television program and find three scholarly articles to analyze about the show or movie. The writing was meant to be a comprehensive content analysis of the three articles that we chose, that formatted an argument based on the points made in the articles. Originally I struggled to find a film or show that I could find articles over. In the end I chose to write about South Park.

When I received the critiques on my first draft (MCOM 2320 Commentary From Cutouts_Instructer Notes) they seemed indicative of the progress that I have made throughout the semester. Most of the issues with the first draft where mainly in relation to formatting, as well as properly using and incorporating APA citation methods into my paper. There where GSP errors in the writing, but thy weren’t the same issues that I had struggled with throughout most of the semester. Instead they where more associated with a failure to properly format the APA citations. However, the original draft does still show my tendency to overuse or misuse words.

  • The first set of revisions that I made where to correct the formatting issues in my paper, both APA formatting and the general formatting requirements of the paper itself. This mainly dealt with centering headings, un-bolding titles, changing page numbers, and putting periods in the proper location after a citation. I also removed the title of the articles I referenced in my paper from the actual body of the paper, and replaced them with a reference to the author and year of the article.
  • Lastly, I removed unnecessary words. This helped simplify the paper, and led to it being easier to read and understand. I also restructured several sentences so that they where able to better relay the message that they were intended to give.

Since there was no chance for a secondary revision process, I then went on to create my final draft (MCOM 2320 Commentary From Cutouts_Final Draft). My final draft did a far superior job of successfully incorporating APA citations. I was able to clarify and simply my paper through several of my APA corrections. Whether it was by removing unnecessary references, or using the correct form of citation to eliminate confusion, my final paper does a much better job of not only eliminating APA but using it as a tool. The overall organization of the final draft is also better due to the corrections of the papers general formatting. By eliminating unnecessary words, and restructuring convoluted sentences, I was able to create a much clearer and more concise piece of writing.

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Narrative Writing Assignment

We were asked to write a two page script without using dialogue. The script was meant to be a story of love between two people in one scene. The challenge of this assignment came with writing in the proper tense, and using the proper format. This assignment was meant to cause us to write creatively, descriptively, and with purpose. For my script I wrote about a teenage girl who was leaving her house to go attend her father’s funeral.

My first draft (MCOM 2320 Narrative WA_Instructor Notes) highlights my lack of understanding of writing scripted actions, and my struggle to tell a story without the use of dialogue. Most of the critiques listed by my instructor addressed my misuse of the proper tense for the format of the script. I overused the past tense, when a script shows current action taking place.

  • The largest revision made for my final draft was correcting the verb tense used throughout most of my script. This also caused me to have to rewrite segments of the script so that the actions I was describing where taking place in the present. I also removed words and segments of text that where unnecessary due to the format and style of the writing.
  • There where few GSP errors pointed out in the writing, and they were corrected respectively.

Without a second revision process by the instructor, I created my final draft (MCOM 2320 Narrative WA_Final Draft). Due to the revision process the final draft was written in the correct verb tense for the assignment. This was by far the greatest struggle to overcome in writing the final draft. In most writing you tell a story after it has happened, however with a script you must always keep the current tense. This prevented me from being able to write without thinking since I don’t instinctively write in the present tense. I also tend to write with an overuse of words. In a script the excess words only create confusion, and do nothing to describe the scene that is happening. However, in reviewing my writing process for this assignment I was able to realize that I have cut down on the amount of GSP errors hat appear in the first drafts of my work.

Strategic Writing Assignment

I was assigned the task of creating an idea for a 30 second PSA for the topic of my choosing. The assignment was to create a case history for the PSA and then to create a script. In the case study we needed to address seven key concepts in the PSA creation process. Due to the lack of general understanding of proper script formatting in the class, more emphasis was put on the writing in the case study portion of the assignment. For my PSA I chose to create an anti-bullying PSA that focused on schools in the Lubbock area.

After turning in the first draft, (MCOM 2320 Strategic WA_Revisions_Instructor Notes) it was made apparent that I had made several errors in my writing. Unlike most of my writing assignments, the critique of the first draft had very few GSP errors, and instead listed numerous issues with the information given in the writing. The the point most emphasized by the critiques given was to better clarify points in my writing.

  • The first revision made was to correct areas that were deemed unclear. Mainly, better describing the purpose of the PSA, and better stating the targeted area for the PSA.
  • The net step taken was to eliminate the repetitive nature of some of the areas of my writing. The mostly meant changing words that where repeated too frequently in paragraphs so that the writing had more depth. I also removed repetitive phrases, which overall also added to the overall effectiveness and depth of the writing.
  • The last revision made was correcting the few GSP and formatting errors that where pointed out in the first draft.

After submitting the second draft, (MCOM 2320 Strategic WA_Revisions_Instructor Notes) the critiques that I received showed great improvement between the two drafts. The second draft appeared to only have a few critiques, and they mainly focused on removing unnecessary words, and rephrasing sentences. I implemented the critiques into my final draft.

  • The main revision implemented was removing the unnecessary text, and verbiage. I also restructured several sentences so that they better conveyed the information being relayed.
  • There where two GSP errors in the second draft, and I corrected them for the final copy.

The final draft of this assignment (MCOM 2320 Strategic WA_Final Draft) benefited greatly from the critiquing process. The writing developed its specificity, and overall effectiveness throughout each draft. In the end, I feel that the greatest lesson I learned through writing this assignment was how a wealth of words don’t guarantee clarity, and actually often leads to confusion.

Informative Writing Assignment

The assignment for our Informative Writing was to compile, and report a newsworthy story. We were asked to keep in mind the qualities of a hard news story, to ensure that we delivered newsworthy content. A large part of the purpose of this assignment was also to ensure that we as writers understood, and where able to implement the inverted pyramid style of writing. For my assignment I chose to write about Oscar Pistorius, the Olympic athlete currently in trial for the death of his girlfriend.

The results and critiques that I received after my first draft (Informative writing WA_revisions) where telling of my understanding of the AP format of writing. The things that cost me the most in the first draft where all GSP errors. My greatest sin in my original draft was misspelling the last name of the main subject of the article, which would be detrimental to the credibility a journalist or any writer for that matter. Aside from this, most of my remaining critiques focused on improper capitalization.

After reviewing the critiques given for my original draft I applied them to my writing to create a second draft with the following revisions.

  • First and foremost I corrected the factual error found within my original draft. In a news story, a misspelled name is considered a failure to clearly and accurately represent the facts. Fixing the spelling error in concern to Pistorius’ last name.
  • The second main revision was to correct my multiple issues with correct capitalization. In some cases I had failed to capitalize words that where proper nouns that I had failed to recognize as such. However, my largest issue with capitalization was with capitalizing words that I thought where proper or part of a title and where not.

After submitting my second draft (Informative Writing Assignment_Revisions_Instructor Notes) I once again received critiques on my work. Based on the critiques given for my second draft, this draft had next to no GSP errors. Instead the critiques focused on the overall writing style used within my article. The greatest emphasis was put on elements of my article and how they fit, or didn’t fit, into the inverted pyramid. Needless to say, my revisions for my final draft dealt more with style and structure than anything else.

  • The first critique that I focused on dealt with the structure of the quotes that I used in the article.
  • The second, and largest revision made was in regards to the order of my article. The critiques called into question whether or not a paragraph in the middle of the article was too broad in scope to be that far down in the writing. To correct this, I restructured the paragraph and moved it farther up in the story, re-writing parts of the paragraphs that now surround it to create a better fit.

My final draft (Informative writing WA_Final Draft) is far better in overall quality, as would be expected of a final draft. Due to the critiques for the first two drafts, GSP errors where eliminated from the body of the work. However, I feel like the most important thing gained from the critiques where the emphasis on the structure and format of my journalistic writing. Realizing that something didn’t fit into the inverted pyramid, and adapting the overall piece to better suit that critique was my greatest challenge, but also my greatest lesson.