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1  Romeo    

Michael  Romeo  
Ms.  Ingram    
Writing  1101    
3  December  2014    
Nostalgia  –  From  Inept  to  Aptness    
“It’s  no  longer  words  on  a  page  to  just  fill  in  the  space,”  a  quote  from  my  brilliant  peer  
Adam  perfectly  embodies  the  substantial  realizations  I  have  come  to  understand  while  
perfecting  the  art  of  writing.  For  this  paper  is  more  of  a  remembrance  than  a  quarrel.  And  as  I  
am  attempting  to  dismantle  the  knowledge  received  in  the  previous  months  leading  up  to  this  
point  to  write  the  final  paper  for  this  class,  I  would  feel  a  sense  of  accomplishment.  And  as  I  am  
sitting  here,  excavating  the  knowledge  gained,  like  a  miner  desperately  searching  for  gold,  I  
cannot  help  but  reflect  on  the  vast  attainments  I  came  to  understand  in  the  short  period  which  
this  class  consisted  of.    While  I  am  in  this  stage  of  recollection,  I  feel  it  is  necessary  to  explain  
the  one  aspect  of  learning  that  this  class  taught  me  that  I  will  carry  on  throughout  my  literary  
career  –  self-­‐realization  in  writing.  This  simplistic  and  rudimentary  concept,  that  is  vital  to  my  
growth  as  a  writer,  has  given  me  the  ability  to  utilize  writing  as  a  tool  for  manipulation  rather  
than  a  method  of  torture.  Exemplified  perfectly  in  the  quote  “The  beginning  of  wisdom  is  the  
definition  of  terms,”  Socrates,  exemplar  of  the  tenacity  of  thought,  utilizes  those  basic  human  
desires  of  love,  success,  and  happiness  to  ask  us  a  quite  deep  and  philosophical  question  –  what  
are  your  personal  loci.  And  progressing  along  this  course,  it  would  occur  to  me  that  my  desire  
was  be  able  to  understand  the  art  of  writing  at  its  deepest  of  levels.    

2  Romeo    

With  this  mind-­‐set  of  unlocking  the  key  to  the  mysteries  of  writing  in  mind,  I  began  to  
indulge  myself  in  every  assignment  I  was  to  be  given.  And  when  I  said  “When  I  find  myself  in  a  
position  of  writing,  I  will  try  to  evoke  the  most  emotion  from  words  as  possible,”  an  exert  from  
my  portrait  of  a  writer  assignment,  I  did  not  know  the  hardship  and  dedication  involved  in  
learning  that  process  of  perfecting  my  style.  But  when  I  was  confronted  with  the  task  of  writing  
an  essay  explaining  my  writing  process  as  a  whole,  I  found  myself  in  a  spot  of  confusion.  How  
can  a  modus  operandi  as  large  as  writing  be  summed  up  into  a  paper?  Contemplating  this  
assignment  is  when  I  received  my  first  writing  epiphany  of  completely  pouring  myself  into  an  
assignment,  with  no  holding  back.  And  by  chance  of  sure  serendipity,  this  task,  as  daunting  as  it  
may  appear,  changed  my  writing  for  the  better.  For  once  I  was  given  the  opportunity  to  
conceive  a  paper  with  little  to  no  guidelines;  just  the  abecedarian  task  of  answering  a  few  
questions  explaining  how  my  writing  occurs.  So  with  this  new  mentality  of  complete  devotion  
to  an  assignment,  I  began  to  write,  and  what  arose  shocked  everyone.  The  second  I  was  
finished,  I  gave  my  grandma  a  call;  I  explained  the  assignment,  and  began  to  read.  By  the  time  I  
was  done,  she  was  blown  away  by  my  ability  to  not  only  encapsulate  the  essence  of  the  
assignment,  but  also  being  able  to  put  my  unique  sense  of  style  throughout  the  paper.  And  it  
was  at  this  moment  I  had  realized  that  I  was  advancing  along  “the  long  and  winding  road”  of  
writing  –  one  step  closer  to  uncovering  the  profoundness  of  writing  in  which  I  set  my  sights  on.      
But  let’s  backtrack  for  a  second  here.  I  did  not  wake  up,  the  day  the  paper  was  due,  and  
begin  my  process  of  articulating  the  assignment  right  away.  This  process  of  linguistic  growth  
started  merely  a  few  days  after  the  class  itself  had  started.  And  for  a  sense  of  my  standpoint  
prior  to  this  class,  I  had  valued  reading  and  writing  about  as  much  as  morning  traffic  on  a  

3  Romeo    

Monday.  Exemplified  in  a  quote  from  my  previous  work    ”For  this  class  posed  barriers  I  thought  
were  impenetrable,”  learning  the  ins  and  outs  of  writing  was  going  to  be  difficult  task.    But  I  
digress,  the  first  assignment  we  were  to  complete  was  one  of  great  simplicity  –  write  a  one  
page  paper  depicting  yourself  in  writing.  Not  a  hard  task  I  began  to  muse,  but  as  I  put  my  pen  to  
the  paper,  I  felt  the  gears  beginning  to  turn  again  in  the  depths  of  my  mind.  And  for  the  simple  
reason  that  this  assignment  gave  me  a  somewhat  taste  of  what  this  class  was  to  include  in  the  
coming  months  is  the  reason  I  choose  it  in  my  E-­‐portfolio.  This  rejuvenation  of  thinking  with  a  
mind  of  writing  was  something  I  wanted  to  experience  again,  and  like  a  drug  addict  wanting  
another  high,  I  began  to  indulge  myself  in  all  of  the  work  I  was  given  in  this  class.  And  looking  
back  upon  that  assignment,  when  I  said,  “My  challenges  include  sentence  flow  and  overall  
clarity,”  in  the  months  that  this  class  consisted  of,  I  have  turned  my  frailties  into  my  métiers.      
In  the  coming  weeks  to  come  we  were  given  the  task  to  create  a  paper  depicting  our  
first  “literary  experience.”  Split  up  into  three  different  drafts,  we  were  given  a  week  to  come  up  
with  brilliance  until  the  next  draft  was  to  be  done.  For  the  first  draft,  I  had  put  all  of  my  heart  
into  that  assignment.  Writing  and  revising  until  in  my  eyes  it  was  perfect.  And  in  the  days  
following  my  simplistic  writing  method,  it  was  ready  to  be  judged  by  my  fellow  peers.  As  I  
began  reading  it  aloud,  I  felt,  for  the  first  time  in  my  life,  a  sense  of  confidence  flowing  through  
my  voice  as  I  was  saying  the  paper  aloud.  And  by  happenstance,  they  loved  it,  giving  me  
nothing  but  compliments  and  praise.  This  feeling  of  linguistic  confidence  was  something  that  I  
had  never  experienced  before,  and  I  wanted  more.  “For  what  I  had  learned  transcended  the  
boundaries  of  writing,  and  incorporated  itself  into  my  daily  life,”  a  quote  from  that  draft  that  
perfectly  epitomizes  my  appreciation  for  my  newfound  writing  understanding.      

4  Romeo    

For  the  next  draft  for  that  assignment,  I  felt  as  though  some  pressure  has  been  lifted  off  
my  shoulders,  giving  me  the  ability  to  write  with  ease.  And  with  this  particular  paper  having  a  
more  deep  focus  on  sensory  detail,  I  went  wild  depicting  everything  from  the  smell  of  the  burnt  
coffee  to  the  feeling  of  the  hard  seat  I  was  sitting  on.  Being  able  to  encapsulate  all  of  the  details  
was  the  reason  why  this  draft  had  made  it  into  the  final  E-­‐portfolio  -­‐  for  the  simple  reasons  that  
this  assignment  had  given  me  confidence  and  a  more  articulate  writing  style.    
But  my  somewhat  concrete  understanding  of  writing  as  a  whole  was  not  only  consisted  
of  writing  papers,  but  rather  the  overall  process  of  learning  to  write  a  paper  correctly.  This  is  
exemplified  in  my  random  notes  that  through  this  course  I  would  jot  down  into  my  notebook.  
One  of  them,  a  simple  bubble  map  of  my  thoughts  on  the  direction  of  a  paper,  helped  a  lot  
more  than  expected.  Recollecting  on  my  writing  process,  I  tend  to  force  greatness  from  myself  
by  sitting  in  front  of  a  computer,  and  refusing  to  leave  until  a  paper  is  before  me.    These  simple  
steps  to  reorganize  my  thought  patterns  have  allowed  me  to  craft  a  great  paper  with  layering  
levels  of  depth.    
My  random  thought  methods  are  also  exemplified  when  I  was  in  the  process  of  making  
my  reading  territories  assignment.  Simple  it  may  be,  a  collection  of  books  and  writings  I  felt  
necessary  to  include  in  a  recollection  type  assignment.  But  this  assignment  led  me  to  a  
conclusion  of  sorts.  While  jotting  down  these  different  pieces  of  literature  something  occurred  
to  me.  For  all  of  my  books  were  clustered  into  the  same  category.  Upon  understanding  this,  I  
began  to  feel  the  urge  to  branch  out  of  my  comfort  zone  to  explore  what  was  unknown.  This  
was  one  of  the  many  steps  I  have  taken  to  enhance  my  literacy  understanding.    

5  Romeo    

Another  element  adding  to  my  understanding  of  writing  was  the  notes  we  did  regarding  
rhetorical  analysis,  and  how  it  should  be  implemented  into  a  paper.  This  concept,  new  to  me,  
was  something  that  I  could  sink  my  teeth  into.  Merely  playing  around  with  different  diction  and  
sentence  structures  along  with  the  overall  layout  of  a  piece  of  literature  has,  in  all  honesty,  
transformed  my  writing  style  into  something  that  I  can  be  proud  of,  a  large  portion  of  the  
confidence  that  I  was  lacking  in  this  area.    
But  it  was  not  until  the  final  essay  for  the  literacy  narrative  when  I  truly  became  
enthused  with  bizarre  writing  forms.  For  this  essay  in  particular,  I  wanted  to  incorporate  not  
just  brilliant  flow,  but  rather  a  way  for  the  readers  to  be  shocked  on  how  my  disharmonious  
writing  style  can  come  together  with  great  precision.  And  when  it  was  time  for  my  group  to  give  
feedback,  they  were  blown  away  by  my  writing  style.  By  this  point,  this  paper  was  more  of  a  
test  run  for  this  new  writing  method  of  insanity,  and  it  seemed  to  be  working  quite  well.  
For  it  was  not  until  my  portrait  of  a  writer  assignment  when  I  felt  confident  enough  to  
start  playing  around  with  how  a  sentence  should  sound  or  which  word  would  work  best  for  the  
situation  at  hand.  With  my  gained  knowledge  of  what  worked  and  what  did  not,  understood  
from  the  final  literacy  narrative  assignment,  I  began  to  let  my  creativity  go  wild.  And  when  it  
was  time  for  my  group  members  to  give  their  feedback,  they  regarded  my  work  as  a  hair  of  
from  perfection.  In  my  eyes,  this  was  the  best  news  I  could  have  received,  playing  around  with  
the  art  of  writing  and  being  able  to  create  a  great  paper.  But  my  real  impression  of  how  this  
new  style  of  writing  was  working  out  was  to  be  determined  from  what  the  teacher  had  to  say.  
In  a  week  of  almost  pure  ambiguity,  I  was  pondering  what  she  would  regard  my  work  as.  And  

6  Romeo    

when  it  was  time  for  her  feedback,  I  was  in  awe.  Not  only  did  she  deem  my  paper  as  good,  she  
also  said  my  writing  style  resembles  that  of  Hawthorne.  Upon  reading  this,  I  became  filled  with  
excitement;  for  at  this  moment  I  felt  I  was  doing  the  right  thing  by  attempting  a  new  style.    
Since  this  paper  is  more  of  a  reflection  than  a  self-­‐gratification,  I  feel  it  is  necessary  to  
make  note  of  the  considerable  amount  of  process  I  have  done  in  months  leading  up  till  this  
point.  Just  skimming  over  blog  posts  one  and  two,  I  was  scared  to  express  myself  in  my  writing;  
deterred  by  what  others  might  think.  This  is  clear  in  my  simplistic  diction  and  straight-­‐forward  
“answer-­‐the-­‐question”  type  writing  style  at  the  time.  But  as  I  look  back  now,  with  a  
transformed  writing  style  and  gained  confidence,  I  can  say  this  progression  of  my  writing  was  
for  the  best.  Now  I  am  at  a  period  where  writing  has  become  my  forte,  knowing  this  I  am  one  
step  closer  to  writing  excellence.    
 With  that  being  said,  I  do  believe  that  I  should  receive  an  A  for  the  hard  work  and  
dedication  that  I  put  into  this  course.    About  a  month  ago  when  I  was  writing  the  midterm  
paper,  and  was  tasked  with  the  question  to  interpret  the  work  that  you  put  into  this  course,  
and  dictate  which  grade  you  should  receive;  and  at  the  time  I  said  a  B.  Rightfully  so,  I  still  stand  
by  my  previous  judgment  made  at  the  time.  Because  the  midterm  was  in  its  essence,  at  least  to  
me,  a  combination  of  recollection  and  optimism  toward  the  future,  writing  it  allowed  me  to  
receive  a  standpoint  for  where  I  truly  am  in  this  class.  But  in  the  weeks  following  the  midterm  I  
began  to  zero  in  on  the  main  concepts  we  were  to  understand,  while  in  the  process  finishing  my  
work  with  great  expertise.  Knowing  this,  along  with  the  countless  hours  put  into  every  paper  

7  Romeo    

we  were  to  write,  I  was  able  to  pinpoint  the  areas  of  this  class  that  I  needed  to  improve  on,  
while  also  fine-­‐tuning  the  areas  I  excelled  in.      
And  as  sort  of  a  parting  gift,  this  paper  was  the  last  one  I  was  to  receive  feedback  on.  
And  for  reasons  understood  now,  this  evaluation  was  deeper,  with  a  lot  more  meaning.  When  
Canaan  said  “You  know  you  better  than  anyone  else,”  I  felt  a  sense  of  added  depth  on  how  I  
regard  my  writing.  Recollecting  now,  he  was  right,  and  looking  for  a  strong  recommendation  on  
a  paper  is  something  the  author  should  decide.  But  because  this  reflection  on  my  paper  was  
more  of  a  self-­‐help  type  opportunity  rather  than  a  “do  this”  type  feedback  is  the  reason  why  I  
choose  it  in  this  paper.  Articulate  thought  is  something  that  I  value,  and  this  feedback  
demonstrated  that.    
By  just  understanding  what  I  needed  to  work  on  and  what  I  could  regard  to  myself  as  
proficient  in,  I  was  one  step  closer  to  achieving  an  A  in  this  class.  Recollecting  on  my  writing  
style  as  well  as  the  ambition  I  had  for  this  class,  it  came  to  my  knowledge  that  I  could  not  only  
improve  on  my  distance  from  my  comfort  zone,  but  also  my  independent  inquiry.  While  I  
believe  an  A  in  this  class  should  represent  proficiency  in  all  nine  areas  of  central  inquiry,  I  was  
lacking  in  certain  areas;  desperately  looking  for  a  way  to  improve  my  understanding  on  those  
areas  where  I  was  lacking.  While  at  the  time  of  this  self-­‐improvement  phase,  I  began  to  
deliberate  ways  to  improve.  
 While  my  confront  zone  issue  was  solved  by  dissecting  different  methods  and  exploring  
their  effect  on  my  writing  style,  the  independent  inquiry  portion  was  proving  quite  the  task.  
And  after  hours  of  countless  brooding,  I  had  come  to  an  understanding;  to  understand  the  art  

8  Romeo    

of  writing,  I  must  understand  philosophy  behind  it.  Upon  knowing  this,  I  started  reading  
different  books  to  understand  how  the  greatest  of  writers  expressed  themselves.  Weeks  of  
reading,  while  on  the  verge  of  insanity  from  absorbing  the  depth,  I  felt  as  though  I  was  
sharpening  my  independent  inquiry  enough  to  the  point  where  I  was  surpassing  the  proficiency  
levels  needed  to  receive  an  A  in  this  class.  Oddly  enough,  while  in  this  stage  of  perfecting  this  
quality,  I  was  also  whetting  my  ability  to  make  connections.  Abstract  thinking,  a  concept  I  have  
longed  to  achieve  greatness  in,  was  but  a  byproduct  of  my  self-­‐improvement.  And  what  better  
to  end  my  series  of  recollections  than  an  antecedent  from  a  previous  draft,  “To  this  day,  
whenever  I  find  myself  in  a  position  of  confusion  when  writing  a  paper,  I  think  back  to  that  
class,  and  what  it  has  taught  me  not  only  as  a  writer,  but  also  as  a  student  in  the  eternal  
classroom  of  life.”