“Kill Your Darlings”

I knew I wasn’t going to become a great writer overnight, but I am happy with my progress. I see where I need to improve and accept there is so much more I can still learn.

Just being excited about something isn’t reason enough to write about it. While I do love “Doctor Who,” and I could talk about it all day, trying to write something thoughtful about is a harder task.

This was my first summer taking two classes at the same time while trying to balance work. It has not been easy. One class I loved, and the other I fought. This was the class I loved.  In the other class, I kept asking myself when am I ever going to do this work outside of class? I found it hard to summon the energy for the work, but I did and I like to think I did a good job.

The one thought I can’t get out of my head is “Kill Your Darlings.” Everyday it just screams at me. Wherever I am editing, in writing or in editing video, I think about this phrase. I just deleted two paragraphs from this essay that I adored. And just yesterday, I leveled a brilliant interview because I needed more time for my show.

My grammar is still weak, but the writing and the editing are getting stronger. They are better then they were 12 weeks ago. I wanted to gain vision in this class. I wanted to see in my writing what I was missing. I have plenty of editors for my work, but I could never understand what they were looking for in the editing process, now I have a clearer picture.

Writing is not some scary task writing can be simple. It’s ideas that are hard. I have trouble communicating clearly. I can’t figure out what I want to say, and I tend to ramble.

This class has helped me be more direct. I think more about my words. I let them sit and I walk away. I used to write something as simple as an email and then just send it right off. Now I sit with it for a moment. I ponder what I have typed and then consider what I am trying to say. Sometimes I just delete it. Other times I save it and come back to it later. No one should ever use the first draft. I trust my gut instincts.

12 weeks ago I had no idea who William Zinsser is, now I think of him all the time. I go back to his book almost every day. I am a slow learner, but the details are getting through.

While I am proud of the work I did in this class I also regret not having more time to focus. The other class ate up so much extra time. After getting feedback in this class I just wanted to go back and re-write. I was only able to a little bit. It wasn’t for a lack of trying, just a lack of time.

The work on pitch and presentation has been the most important work I have done in grad school so far. This was the idea I came here looking for. I will continue this work and refine the idea over and over again as time goes by. I hope to eventually make the idea a reality.

I feel like a writer now.

Thank you Bob.