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Leon 1

Maritza Leon Cartagena
Mrs. Watkins
Comp II TR 10:30am
April 24, 2016
Cover letter: Good ideas Become Good Essays
Writing has been one of the most interesting and difficult journeys in my college
experience. My English has improved tremendously over the course of this year. In the beginning
I struggled with writing and grammar. Composition I was where I improved my grammar and
mechanics. In Composition II, I learned to be a critical thinker and to explore different subjects.
Writing at a college level has helped me to build confidence in my writing during this time. I still
need a lot of help on my papers but as not much as before. People that read my paper in the past
now compliment my improvements. The most difficult paper I wrote in college was a journal
review for my government class. On one hand, the biggest challenge I have had to overcome is
grammar. On the other hand, my best feature is being able to express my ideas in an organized
fashion.
The first composition class I took in college was the most helpful with my writing. In that
class I learned more about grammar and mechanics than I have ever learned before. I wrote
“Writing Journey” and “Dreaming about Hard Work without Perfection” which were personal
essays. They both describe who I am, one as a writer and the other one as person. I wrote one of
my best research essay in that class titled “The American Dream Drowning with Inequality”.
This essay was one of the strongest and most organized compared to the rest of the essays I have
written in college. I used a combination of my own experience and research to support my
points. The American dream subject is very close to my heart, which helped me really connect
with this essay. The essay focuses on the difficulty for immigrants, minorities, and lower social
classes to achieve their American dream. The English Composition I helped me develop my
writing skills and challenged myself to be better writer.

Leon 2

Composition II improved my critical thinking skills and also forced me to get out of my
comfort zone. In this class I learned to read and write at a higher level of difficulty. I wrote a
gender inequality paper, which was the first paper I wrote out my comfort zone. The paper’s
main purpose was to explain gender inequality in women and men and how can it be solved.
Usually in my papers I write about my culture and Puerto Rico. However for this topic, I had no
background or personal information to go on. I had never dived deeply into this subject and only
knew surface level facts about gender inequality. Research was my only resource to prove my
point which made this essay a big accomplish for me.
Since I started my writing journey my biggest challenge was spelling and grammar. Now
the problem is still present in my writing but not as strong as it was before my composition
classes. I used to struggle with run-on sentences and fragments at the beginning. Now I struggle
more with past and present tense mistakes. To improve this difficulty, I go to the tutor often to
learn from my mistakes and be able to correct it by myself in the future. Hopefully, I will get to
the point where I only need minimal help from a tutor.
Conversely, my strengths are critical thinking and organization of the paper. Research
papers have always been my best type of paper. The organization skills help when it comes to
outlining and following a specific structure. Usually these papers take me less time to write and I
am able to express myself concisely. Since I started writing in college I have asked people to
read and edit my paper. I always receive the same response of “the ideas are good, but there are
still some grammar mistakes.”
My papers consistently have the same structure. The intro is always a half page, followed
by three main points and a half page conclusion. When writing a research paper, I always follow
the same format. I use the outline to make sure the example is followed by an explanation. In
other types of papers when I write about myself, I find that writing the story first and then
following up with example is easier. In those types of essays, the structure is not nearly as rigid.

Leon 3

My writing is getting better but it still needs a lot of work. English composition classes
did help me improve my grammar and my process of building ideas. I liked writing research
papers before, but now I am able to write about myself and enjoy it too. I used the same pattern
and format to write my papers every time. During college, I usually write about my Puerto Rican
culture, but recently I had to branch out and write about a subject that I was unable to use my
personal experience. It was a challenge, but I was able to overcome it and wrote it successfully. I
am getting to the point where I can confidently write about things outside of my culture and
experiences, but I still have a long way to go.