Who Am I Writing For?

Over the course of these past two days, we have discussed at length the theme college student writing and how it either caters to that of the student’s creativity or “voice” or a faculty’s professional discourse. Generally, I personally write in my own style with a spice of my professor’s. Although, I sometimes find myself in classes that have required me to suspend my methodology of writing and fully own that of my professor’s. In hindsight, it’s not a crime for that to be so because our teachers do know far more than we may know, but it becomes problematic when I am given no room to exercise my creativity with my professor’s writing methodology. As an English major, I have had professors who have loved my style of writing and others who were not down for the cause. Not to say that I am a perfect writer, but I try my best to write my best. The professors who challenged my writing, I came to realize, unconsciously wished for me to adapt their style perhaps. I remember in one certain class I received a terrible grade on my first essay…and the second. It wasn’t until my third essay that I realized I needed to sit down with the professor to try to understand her style of writing. I didn’t review the first few essays with her because she commented on all of the others and I challenged myself to take all those comments into consideration on every paper. When I met with her, the “issue” was not so much with my content, but how I presented my content. She was looking for a more professional vocab inventory. Basically, my writing was a bit basic. Now I don’t find this to be wrong because through that, I challenged myself (still am) to read more in order to expand my  vocabulary, but I had to write “for her.” In understanding her style, guess what? I got a much better grade on the last essay. So even though creativity and experimenting with one’s own style is encouraged, do we end up truly writing for ourselves or for our professors?


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