Re: Freewriting

Mon, 22 Jul 1996 21:11:41 -0400

I'd like to respond to Marie Wilson Nelson's comments about the "water
line"-- her words ring especially true as I have been revising my
diss chapters (lit review and methdology, to be more exact). I sent
in what I had thought was OK stuff, not ready for acceptance, mind
you, but not in need of much major re-working.

What I found, after healthy (but respectful) commentary from my
director was that I did indeed need to do some major rethinking of both
chapters. So what would we call what I had done before? (BTW has
anyone bothered to try and define/describe what we mean by the term

The chapters have both taken major new directions. The writing not
only went deeper but I felt as if my voice were emerging from the
text. A weird experience but one I am sure you all have experienced
at some point in your writing lives--

So what's my point here? I am not sure but I wonder what the relationship
of my previously thought "finished" writing to my present drafts? If
not freewriting, then what? And how do I apply what I have learned
to my teaching?

I am always concerned with students who insist that they do their best
writing under last minute pressure and without much drafting. I don't
doubt that "one draft wonders" are possible but in my experience, my
students don't usually produce them. There is always a new place that
their writing can go--and there can be great satisfaction in watching
the path it can take, as long as, I suppose, it is writing that they
care about beyone a grade--

Take care--

Ruth Overman Fischer