Friday, September 5, 2008

More introductions, some basic blogging etiquette

Hello Bloggers.

1. Post a comment about something from your notes that someone said in class that struck you as interesting. It helps to start with something like: “Dear (blank), I was interested in your comments on (blank).” Then you may want to quote something he or she said and continue the idea, or ask a specific question, or move on to a related topic. Intellectual dialogue is the key here.

2. Look for the comment directed at you and respond.

Three "Blue and Gold" Rules:

1. Compose your comments in Word and paste in when you are complete. If the internet crashes while you are composing, you will lose all your work.

2. Sarcasm is basically impossible to pull off in this forum. Keep all dialogue professional, courteous, and appropriate. This is a virtual classroom and once you post your comments, there is a record of them. This is the reality of the world you live in and you may as well learn how to perform in it.

3. Do not use your last name. (You do not want a literary stalker.) This site is publicly viewable. Simply write your first name.

Photo of Salvador Dali with rhino mustache tied with flowers. He claimed that he wore his mustache this way because it pointed towards God.


Mary N. said...


Jenny L said...

Vanessa, my love!

You said that you write "base on the past, emotions, and desire."
I find your inspiration for writing to be very interesting. What else inspires you to write?
Also I completely agree with you when you said that "writing can give opportunities."

Mels1619 said...

Dear Mario,

I really connect to your comment about "why you write?" which was "to tell no one something I don't want to tell anyone". I thought it was a confusing but yet true statement. Sometimes you just want to keep things to yourself but there are moments where you have to get it out of your chest, and telling that "no one" (piece of paper) everything. I so understand you!!! =)

CarlaC said...

Dear Andy,
I was really interested about your comments on why you write. In class you said that writing for you was a way to show how you really felt. Do you enjoy writing how you feel because it is difficult to express your true feelings to other people? Or is it because when you write your emotions you are able to express yourself with out judgment? Also you said in class that you write to see how far you have come and be able to look back on that. Looking back is it hard to believe all the different things that you have been through, and how far you have come in the past years if high school. I would really like to know.
Carla C.

Cynthia R said...


To begin, I must agree with your statement that "writing contributes to your own identity." I definitly think that writing has the ability to show one's inner thoughts and emotions.

You also mentioned that writing happens automatically. Once again, I agre withthyat statement. When given a topic to write about or an assignment in general, I just sit at the computer and type away. The material just seems to flow out of me like a stream of words. Later on I go back and edit teh work, but for the most part I dig what you're saying.

Finally, I thought it was interesting that you mentionbed thatwriting "gives answers and explains things." I had never thought of it that way but it makes sense. When you are writing, you have to have your facts straight or form an opinion about a topic. This leads to one learning as one writes.

Nice input during the class discussion!

Tzivia H said...

Greetings Cynthia,

I wanted to first comment on your motivations for writing, as I found them especially insightful. Writing, as you noted, is a means to explore new ideas or simply be self-reflective. What struck me most however was your assertion that "with writing, comes power." I had never considered it from this viewpoint, but after marinating, I must agree that this generally sums up writing. In writing, you have the power to profess your thoughts perhaps even more so than verbally. You also touched upon the longevity of writing- unlike speaking, writing has the ability to withstand the test of time and in that, as you noted, comes power. You were able to highlight a more latent purpose of writing- to document, to memorialize, and as you put it, "to remember."

Kris10 said...

My good friend Emily,

During yesterday's class discussion, your remarks to "Why you write" were quite interesting. I always thought you were the type of person who would love to sit down and read whatever you could get your hands on. During the discussion I learned that it was quite the opposite. You write because, well, you have to. The interesting part was that you also write to satisfy your curiousity. So basically you were saying that you write what catches your attention, and when something doesn't it is not one of your choices. The only reason you have wrote half as much as you have is because you have to. I can relate to that entirely. I tend to only right once in a while when something is really on my mind. Other than that, I only write due to school work that is needed to be completed. I liked learning that I had another thing in common with you that I had never known. It just goes to show, don't judge a book by its' cover.

Bye for now! Kristen w.

Andy V. said...

Dear, Mary N.

Your comments during the class’s discussion on “Air Guitar” by Dave Hicky were thought provoking and thoughtful. Bringing up the comment about the italicized words allowed the class to go deeper into how the author speaks. It allowed the class to look closely on how Hicky used sarcasm to defend his job as a critic. Your comments on how Hicky shows that critics’ affects are short, allowed to think on his purpose of writing the story when he describes his job. It is also great that you brought up how he talked about how he got into writing and then moving on to defending his job.

emily said...

Tzivia Brie,

Although we've known each other for a good portion of our lives, I actually felt as if I learned something about you during our English class the other day. For years you've demonstrated a passion and a talent for writing, but we've never really discussed your reasons for doing it. I guess I just assumed it was mostly for enjoyment; when you said that one of the main reasons you write is to take the edge off of your bad moods, it made perfect sense to me. When you said you're an open person, I completely agreed with that statement; however, I understand that sometimes it must be relieving to write your rants down rather than to speak them. Since I don't write for personal reasons, I think you could lend me insight into emotional writing.


Stephen said...

Hi Alinne!!!

I love how you express your imagination with writing. This is, of course, a NEW idea for me, as I rarely write to express...well... anything other than school. I can totally relate to your problem of always having a judge to screen your spoken words. It's sad that people in general have become so judgmental! I can understand your need for a medium where no one can tell you what to say or how to act.

I'm one of those who bottle their feelings and never express their emotions. I envy your method of expressing your imagination. I look forward to learnng more from you, Alinne.

Pretty Lady Alinne said...

Even though we do not write for the same reasons, I completely understand where you're coming from, and even agree with some points.
When you said that you write "for encouragement and for yourself and no one else" I completely and entirely agree with you! Most of the time I write to encourage myself to not stop writing, because writing helps me expand my imagination. However, like you, I also feel that I write for my own good and no one else's. When I get, it's my chance to do something just for my benefit; a little self fish I know, but it makes us feel so much better right?


ashley8 said...

Hello Kristen

During the class discussion on Why Do You Write, you introduced many ideas that I found to be very enlightening. You began by saying that writing was simply another way of expressing your thoughts and ideas; however, you then said writing was a way for you to say things that you otherwise would not. After I thought it, I completely agreed with you because when you write something down that you otherwise would not have said aloud, it is easy to throw the paper away afterwards. Even though you did not verbally express your words, by writing them down, it allows you to at least get those thoughts out of your head. I think that the underlining beauty of being able to write something that others will never be able to see, is that however personal those thought may be, no one has the chance to judge you or criticize your writing. I also liked how you said that all of your thoughts are original, and I think original thoughts are essential to writing because they are creative and they help you to understand yourself better.

C-ROD said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
C-ROD said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
C-ROD said...

Tzivia Brie Halperin III,

I am digging your comment. Thanks. I especially enjoyed the use of the word "marinating", as I am a huge fan of cooking and its terminology.

It is interesting how we both write at times for the purpose of getting our feelings out on paper and off of our minds.


(I hope this is where we were supposed to write our reponses)

Jenny L said...


Thanks for your input. I found the class discussion to be really interesting. Each person had his or her own reasons for writing. You made a great point as well, as Tzivia has mentioned, that writing gives you a sort of power. I love how you recognized that.

See you in class

Kristen W. said...

Hi Ashley!

Thanks for saying how you felt about my comments during the discussion. I'm glad that you agree with what I was saying. Writing is so much easier than saying something aloud, especially if your nervous about telling someone. Great minds think alike! (well we should since we were friends since we were in like 3rd grade)

See you next class!
-Kristen W.

Mario P. said...


I cannot tell you how relieved I am that someone did understand what I was getting at when I said that. I honestly confused myself while reading it, had to sound it out to remember my mind track.


I got to tell you, I cannot relate more to what you said. I think almost anyone who writes without an intentional purpose (i.e. school report, essay, fictitious story) does it to express emotion. I mean, while going around the room almost everyone made it a point to say that it was a release for their emotions, a therapeutic exercise.

Mary N. said...

Dear Matt Z.,

When Mr. Gallagher asked each one of us to answer the question “Why do you write?” you said that you wrote because “writing is a cause and I write for an effect.” I thought this was a really interesting answer. I know that you are an art person (as you have said many times during class); you love to be creative through painting. I compared your answer to writing to that of painting, “Painting is a cause and I paint for an effect.” It never occurred to me to think of art and writing in such a way, but now I have no doubt that what you said is one hundred percent true. Writing and painting have effects on people; whether they change their points of view or whether they allow them to enter a moment of deep-thinking.

Now I have a question for you: Does writing have the same effect on you as painting?

Mary N. said...

Hey Andy V!

Thanks for the compliment; I really appreciate it. The reason why I noticed the italicized words is because last year Ms. Pettit drilled the idea that words are italicized to achieve a purpose into my head. So I figured that looking deeper into them would be worthwhile, and it appeared to have been as it allowed us to observe his tone and his purpose more closely.

Andy V. said...

Dear Carla,
I enjoy writing for many reasons. To answer your two questions at once, the purpose I write is to get my idea across without judgment half way through. People are so caught up on my wording that it is difficult to say what I want to say. Sometimes saying things that is important to me is difficult as well, so writing messages on my AIM profile works well. Writing allows me to record things I thought or done in the past, which is really interesting as well, not only in high school but much further in the past. I wish I kept my old journal I wrote when I was in first grade; it would be interesting to read now. I hope that answered your questions Carla.
Andy V.

Matt Z! said...

Dear Michaela:

During our class discussion yesterday about our personal responses to "Why Do You Write?", you said one thing in particular that really struck a chord with me. One of the main reasons that you write things, you said, was to "think deeper about things than you normally would have". When you said this, something clicked in my head and it made a lot of sense to me. I realized that I also thought much deeper and much more linearly when I was writing things out. I think it's because when we write things down, we are making our abstract thoughts more concrete, and then they are easier to follow and build upon. Now, my only question is this- knowing that writing things makes it "easier to think", why don't we do it more often? Hahaha.

Sincerely critical,

Matt Z! said...

And to follow up on Mary's question;

No, I can't say that writing has the same effect on me as painting does. While I can do both in order to try and express something or invoke some kind of emotion in a person, I find that writing creates a much more potent release than drawing or painting. Perhaps it is because I am a visual learner, but colors, shapes, and even textures all have extremely strong emotional ties to them in my head. When I think, I tend to think in pictures and feelings instead of sounds.

For example if I were angry about something, and I chose to paint it, I would use "angry colors" and other elements that, in my mind, invoked the emotion of anger. This would not necessarily help me release the pent-up emotion, because the colors, shapes, and textures that I created would constantly be reminding me that I was angry. If I wrote about the issue at hand, however, my thoughts would be collected and organized into a linear thinking pattern in order for me to get them down on paper. Because of this, writing would help me move on and release the anger. This is due, I believe, to the fact that the very act of reading requires a bit of deciphering, while simply gazing at a piece of artwork generates an instant emotional response for me. Additionally, the letters of the alphabet do not hold any kind of emotional charge in my mind, while colors do.

So, to answer your question in a nutshell; no, writing and painting do not have the same personal effect on me.

Vanessa G. said...

Hey "Steve"! I see that you write based on your desire to learn about yourself and other things around you (intellectually). I most definitely agree with you because I feel the same way and then some. But you seem to stress, correct me if I'm wrong, that you write mainly because you have to. I would like to know what influences you to write, other than being forced to. Comment back if you can!

Stephen said...

Hey, Venessa!
You are precisely right. I did stress that I wrte mainly because I "have to." There aren't many other reasons for me to put pen to paper. First of all, my handwriting is, for lack of a better word, horrible. The words look like chicken scratches. I type better than I write by hand, and I admit that there isn't much incentive for me to pull up Microsoft Word and begin typing. Sad, but true. I used to keep a journal when I was 6 (with a picture of Elvis Presley on the front-I didn't know who he was at the time...).

I will say this though. I've heard it said that I'm a good speaker (I dispute the claim). Whenever I write, I allow my personal voice to "shine through." This message is a great example. What I'm typing right now is what I would be saying to you if I could speak to you face to face. The big advantage is that I can "backspace" and reword something until it's right. I love the flexibility that writing gives me to express my views succinctly and elegantly, without the stuttering of speaking.

How about you?

Michaela I. said...

Hey Ashley,

So when you read your “Why Do I Write?” piece in class, I noticed you said that writing helps you to “organize your thoughts”. I have to admit that that reason never crossed my mind while doing this assignment, but after you said that I realized that I fully agree with you. Thoughts tend to be all over the place and putting them on a piece of tangible paper is really a helpful way to see and physically organize what we are thinking. I also appreciate how basic this reason is. Sometimes we try to find great philosophical reasons for what we do but in actuality we do things, like writing, to fulfill basic needs, in this case organization. You also mentioned that you write for self-expression. I also agree with this and believe most people, including myself, write for this reason as well.

emily said...

Hey Kristen,
I'm glad we have even more in common than we thought..and you pretty much hit the nail on the head with what I said in class-I'm glad to know that at least someone was paying attention . (hah!)

I do love to read, though. I actually read all the time, because I have to and even though I don't. I enjoy reading other people's work, I just don't get that much out of writing myself.


Ashley A said...

Hey Michaela,

Although my reasons for why I write were simple, thanks for seeing my point and understanding how writing down thoughts and ideas are a good way for me to manage things, especially since so many much can be going on at one time. I too agree with you that writing things down, allows you to see them physically and that too, guides me in understanding not only the things that I need to accomplish, but the way in which I should approach every challenge that I face.

Thanks again!!

Pretty Little Lady AD said...

Hey Steven!

Thanks for all those encouraging words! Glad to know that you understand! I really liked how you put the reason why I write: "no one can tell you what to say or how to act." Perfectly put; and I'm sure that's anyone dream world.. ahaha. I also look forward to learning more about your "dangerous life" LOLOL!

Class, I was thinking about how I said I only write to express my imagination and not to express my feelings... Really though, I believe we all write to express ourselves (emotions included) and express something we are not good at saying or doing. (For me it would be not being loud!) And in my opinion writing somewhat releases our feelings and helps our imagination grow all at once. So, the way I see it, I do write to express emotions hidden within me. Just thought I should put that out... =)

Tzivia H said...


I'm actually touched, and not in a sarcastic, ironic, or goofy way..

May I also add, that writing is always enjoyable for me in spite of the topics- even if most are catalyzed by painful or tedious situations (including class work).

Considering your own impressive writing style within an intellectual forum and through the newspaper, I am at a lost as to why you wouldn't want to experience "emotional writing" yourself. Although it's a break from the norm, have you ever considered experimenting?

But as they say, to each his own.

sodaba said...

hey Carla,
i think it was you who said that in Air Guitar, the author keeps contradicting himself by saying that criticism is weak and then stating that it is important, and a few other people had said the same thing. but i have to disagree, i might be wrong, but he keeps stating that criticism cannot do anything to the artwork, and that art still "survives" even after it has been criticized.
i was wondering if u or anyone from the class could answer my question: do you think he is ashamed of being an art critic, maybe he is doing it for the love of writing, but he really doesn't want to criticize anyone else??

Kayla P said...

Hey Steven,
I thought it was interesting that you mainly write for intellectual reasons, because I'm just the opposite. It made me pay exta attention to what you were saying since I don't know many people who only write for school. I don't know if you remember, but we worked together on a book in Ms. Suskind's class, and I thought you did a very good job. You convey your thoughts well, and I bet that would translate into writing.

Kayla P said...

Hey Steven,
I thought it was interesting that you mainly write for intellectual reasons, because I'm just the opposite. It made me pay exta attention to what you were saying since I don't know many people who only write for school. I don't know if you remember, but we worked together on a book in Ms. Suskind's class, and I thought you did a very good job. You convey your thoughts well, and I bet that would translate into writing.