Shitty First Drafts: Patterns And Weaknesses (Essay Sample)
NOTE: This article is on pages 155-160 in the textbook Work in Progress.
For your tenth writing exercise, read Lamott's article. Then, in 1-2 pages, answer the following prompt. Remember to quote directly from Lamott's article to help support your points.
Lamott obviously knows well what the weaknesses in her shitty first drafts are likely to be. Are you aware yet of any patterns in your first-draft writing – places or ways in which you simply expect that the writing will need work once you actually have words on paper?
Shitty First Drafts
Shitty First Drafts
Lamott's article not only highlights many of the issues that she has with writing first drafts but also highlights the diverse ways in which different individuals struggle to actually put information down on paper. As Lamott's mentions, the writing of food reviews was predominantly informed by the experiences at the restaurant. By engaging in this process, Lamott is able to have a solid experience upon which she can make observations and complete her reviews as is needed. I can greatly identify with this, seeing as writing for me is almost always a process based on reading some literature or watching a film or even having a conversation with someone. The problem, however, comes in making critical and informed reflections on the experience, which serve as the foundations and guiding principles of the writing itself.
Lamott mentions that her first drafts are typically shitty because she chooses to write about anything and everything that comes to mind with regards to the topic, which makes her first draft a “child's draft, where you let it all pour out.” In this way, her first drafts are inevitably shitty and, in her own judgment, quite embarrassing. While I do not have the exact same experience, mine is still similar to Lamott's in some way. When writing first drafts, I have the tendency to drift a great deal insofar as the subject matter of the writing is concer
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