Friday, February 10, 2006

J/ Write two shorter essays (3-4 paragraphs each) using only one type of appeal (argument from any one of the following: heart, values, character, reason) for each essay. So, if you write one essay that is "all heart", your second essay might be all reason. Again, you may use logical fallacies if you think that they will help you convince your reader. Identify which appeal you are using in each essay ahead of time (i.e. Essay 1: Argument from the heart) Be sure to identify your audience before you write your essay. (i.e. Audience: Dr. Malesh OR Audience: The Chronicle of Higher Education OR Audience: My Mother to whom I am explaining why I got a "C" in my writing class).

This is my completed first essay; I posted part of it yesterday, but I ended up changing it around a bit in order to better fit what I had to say. Once again, the audience is my fellow writers.

Essay One: Argument from the Heart

Writing is something that comes from within; it cannot be forced nor requested, but rather it must simply flow from the mind and soul onto paper. For this reason, good writing cannot be taught by one person unto another. Certainly, students of the craft can learn techniques that will improve such things as grammar, sentence structure, and the like, but this is not what defines good writing. Good writing is where the author is able to convey what we are unable to say. Anybody can do a report on, say, the population boom of China in the 1900's. Reports are simple restatement exercises, with no real emotion attached to them. Writing is not about reporting, its about creation. Its about capturing what you are experiencing as a human being, and being able to share this experience. Readers respond to these creations, because they may too be feeling the exact same way. But what separates the readers from the writers isn’t the ability to feel that way, but instead to capture that feeling and translate it onto paper for the entire world to see.
The author must be able to produce their own thoughts onto a piece of paper, in a manner that can reach the masses, and, in turn, help to transform the readers thoughts, ideas, and outlooks. The production of these thoughts is aided in large part by the writers ability to open up a vein, a gateway from their heart to written word. Those who have trouble expressing their ideas in literature do so because they are blocking this gateway, and instead focusing on facts and opinions that they have already seen or heard in their lifetime. The ability to say what has not been said, to write what has not been written, is what defines those "good writers." This ability is not something that can be taught in the classroom or studied in a library. It is an innate attribute; a power that only a few possess, and even fewer attempt to cultivate. The gift can be there, but the attitude may not always be. Because of this, it is important for a truly good writer to have writing in his or her blood, flowing through them at all times. They are then able to transfer their thoughts and feelings from the heart to the mind, and then, to paper. To quote William Wordsworth, "Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart."
Now, this is not to say all writing should come directly from the heart. Writers must add in other facts and viewpoints in order to strengthen their argument. But what is important is backing up these facts with what you, as the writer, feels. The stronger you feel about a topic, the more effort your going to put into it. Obviously then, the more effort that you put into it, the greater the end result will be. And after all, what is the point in writing if your not gonna pour your own blood and sweat and tears into the work? We as writers are not doing this for money or fame (at least not yet). We write because we feel that it gives us an escape; a chance to be free, to put pen to paper and create what has not yet been created. By using your heart, your emotion, you can capture that very moment when you are writing on paper. That is what readers want; they want to feel what you feel, smell what you smell, taste what you taste. How are they going to experience any sensory details if you as the author leave them out? By opening up yourself and putting it all out there, you create things that would otherwise remain with you and you alone. A true writer knows the value of heart in their writing, and when they apply it, masterpieces are created and the beauty of the english language can be seen.


Blogger P. Malesh said...

The Wordsworth quote is a nice touch!

12:14 PM  

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