Hi and welcome back to my blog. We’ve just wrapped up an interesting little project all about persuasive writing. Our driving question was “How can I use my voice to affect change?”, and our goal was to change someone’s opinion or persuade them to do something. It was a very open ended project, with our only constraints being to persuade, and to only use writing to do so.
Obviously with the final product being a written persuasive writing piece, writing played a huge part in this project. Now I personally consider myself to be a writing hater. Ever since I was in elementary school I was told my writing was usually boring and lacked voice, I can speak my thoughts out loud quite easily, but the transfer to the page is anything but smooth. In fact I am currently writing this blog post using speech to text, as it’s my most useful tool when it comes to creating writing that sounds like me. Voice was one of my bigger struggles in this project and I’m still not quite happy with how it turned out. I think one of the reasons might just be that I’m an indecisive writer. When I have time to think about the words I want to say, I struggle over choosing the words and the idea becomes lost. I think I need to work on prioritizing the ideas before individual word choice. However the one thing I’m most proud of in this writing piece is the planning of my points and ideas beforehand, so the organization and flow of my writing was thought out and planned before I even wrote a word. This also made it far easier to go back and change the organization of my writing (which I ended up doing a couple times), as I could very clearly see the key ideas of each point and how they would flow into the previous points.
Despite some edits I would still like to make to my writing (there are a couple points I felt I should of included, but they messed with the flow of the writing, should have spent more time fixing this), the biggest thing I would like to change in this project what is my indecisiveness on a topic. I spent probably a week and a half dancing around and refusing to commit to a topic, and I really didn’t spend enough time putting the work into choosing a good one, and to be honest it ended up screwing me over later. Now I didn’t hate the topic I ended up choosing (my topic was anti teaching cursive writing for kids), but I certainly had no passion for it. Maybe this would be fine for a writer more talented than myself, but this made it so difficult to connect to the topic I chose. And not exaggerate but every “persuasive writing topic suggestions” article said “choose something YOU are passionate about!”, and most unfortunately for the cursive enthusiasts out there, I am not one of them. I think because of this lack of connection I really struggled to find my writing voice, and I think if I chose a topic I cared more and knew more about, I really would’ve ended up with a better final product.
Still at the centre of this project the main thing to learn was how to persuade. We were told many times over the course of this project how important the skill of persuasion is, and I tend to agree. However I think I underestimated the difficulty of this task. I think the most important thing I came to understand about persuasion was really how important knowing your audience is. It is fundamental to forming persuasive arguments, as different points most definitely target different people. For example I chose to go with a much more emotional route in my writing, because I didn’t think my mother would want to hear about scientific studies on cursive writing, as most of her attachment to the topic came from her childhood and past. I ended up being fairly successful in persuading my mother, but in future I think it would be interesting to try this with a more removed audience, and try and understand somebody I don’t know so personally. I also think taking away an audience you know very well forces you to work more on your voice in your writing, as it becomes harder for the audience to visualize who the piece is from.
I think in the end this project was rough for me. It was truly a lesson in how things stay with you, I was told as a kid that I wasn’t a great writer, and I’ve spent a long while just agreeing, and it’s truly not doing me any favours. I’m not the most proud of the product of this project, but it’s not because I suck at writing, it’s because I don’t think I put in quite enough work. Simply saying I’m a bad writer is unproductive, so I hope we get more of these writing projects in the future where I can work on writing instead of making excuses, even when it seems painful and treacherous. Sorry this is a rather unusual end to a post, but I feel like I didn’t put it in writing nothing would change.
Thank you as always.
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