After all this time I’ve finally discovered the wonders of writing

/uj I totally get that and take no actual issue with it as a phase. Then again, it’s a stultifying experience that ends drew far to much of my teaching brain rather than my camaraderie and creativity brain.

Sit in one of my classes, office hours, or read my marginalia and rubrics and it’s pretty clear I empathize with and care about people’s writing. It’s just not what I like to do in my free time.

Perhaps what was most frustrating about those experiences is how many of these people were old enough that some of these issues really shouldn’t be. By that I mean they’d have a hard time with English 101. I know because I lived with many chapters and picked my editing battles carefully. People would re-submit them a month or two later, convinced they’d taken to heart everybody’s thoughts and sufficiently revised. I’m not exaggerating when that usually meant tweaking a couple sentences or even adding to the length without addressing what had already been written. So all the old problems remain and now there are new problems.

Yes, it sounds harsh. It IS harsh. It’s also why I gave up the notion of finding value in the workshopping that had been so valuable in grad school. I had no illusions to re-create THAT but there’s low expectations and then there’s loowwwww expectations. That was maybe eight years ago and I’ve only thought about it much since discovering this and that other sub.

It gets even more amusing in that my own focus is poetry. If I had a tattoo for every time someone responded by saying, “I don’t get poetry” then my body would be tar black from all the layers. As such, I never once actually submitted my own writing just like I wouldn’t go to a lawyer whose chief education was Law & Order.

Harsh again, I know. Flourish can be fun. Lest this seem a rant, it isn’t. This is quite dispassionate and I’ve grinned remembering some real horror stories. I genuinely miss having trusted readers who themselves have been through some ringers, but truth is that online I’m seeing a lot of the symptoms that lead to slush submissions I trawl through. Probably Twas always thus. Now it’s just super-sized.

/r/writingcirclejerk Thread Parent