Thursday, February 14, 2008

Writer's Block

My 15 y.o. had a report to write, and in in true form inherited by her mother, waited until the last moment. So, last night, with a stack of chicken-scratched notes (I swear, she hides a hen in her school locker...I'm sure if one were to check it out, straw would be sticking out of the bottom of the locker...but I digress), she sat at the computer, head on keyboard, totally at loss at how to start.

I was peeved, becasue I knew she slacked off until the last moment, but also sad, because I know she has a writing problem. She has way too many ideas in her head, and she can't weed them. She feels she has to write everything, envisions herself having to write a thousand page thesis, then ends up writing nothing. Also, she has a need to write The Best Report, and knowing that she can't, defeats herself before she even starts. Then I get my knickers in a twist because I am at a loss as how to help because I am trying to push away negative thoughts of my days in school.

Also, she's a melodramtic 15 y.o. 'Nuff said.

I suggested,"Try writing the report like you are telling your best friend about_________, "in this case, it was the history of Star Trek, the original series. Talk like it was the greatest thing since sliced bread (honestly, she thinks it is), but pretend that your friend has never heard of Star Trek, and has no clue as to what a Vulcan is. You are not writing a scientific dissertation, just a report.

During one of her breaks in writing, we got on the subject that Gene Roddenberry wanted to create a story that involved a "United Nations" type idea...many different cultures coming together. Being the Sixties, it was revolutionary. But looking back at it today, the creation of the different characters fell into obvious stereotypical molds that would probably not play in Peoria today. My daughter felt that this was a interesting concept and added it to her report, because it was something that she had also noticed in watching the series.

She finally finished the report around 11:30 last night and left it on the table for me to read this morning before I woke her for the day.

This girl can really write. She wrote a very entertaining report, that I hope the teacher appreiciates and doesn't dock her for her interjections of her special type of humor. I'm glad my daughter can write. Someday when she is older and no longer living here (oh, she says she's living in my basement until she's 40), there may be times in her life she may not have many people to talk to...but she will always have her way with words. She will always be able to convey thoughts and ideas...even if she may be the only one that reads them.

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