April 3, 2008
By George Brandt, Palatine, IL

As I sit and stare at the blank computer screen before me, my first and only thought is “Am I ever going to finish this paper?” I look around the room for something amusing to play with as I “think” of ideas, and then I’ll surf the internet for a while and before I know it 45 minutes has passed by and still the page is blank. At this point, I’ll really start to try and focus on the task at hand. I start to type away usually with no previous knowledge of the topic. I’ll write a paragraph or two and feel like I have accomplished enough to take a food break. I don’t tend to start actually working until the clock approaches 10:30, sometimes even 11 and even then I just try to work fast enough so I can get to bed, usually without proof reading or editing. I mostly just write for the grade, as bad as that sounds it true. I don’t do much writing other than for school. When my band is writing song lyrics, I’ll throw my two cents in here and there but that’s about it.

My writing really reflects my personality. The tone in which I write is usually the tone I use when I talk to people. I don’t change my style of writing just because it’s an essay. If I did that I wouldn’t get anything done because I would grow bored of it. I try to keep myself interested while I am writing, and the reader interested while they are reading. I like to think of my writing as if I’m having a conversation with the person who is going to be reading it…a long, one-sided conversation but a conversation none the less. Most of the conversations that I have with my friends are laid back, not too serious stuff. We have serious conversations sometimes, but mostly we just have fun. There is a time and a place to have fun, and a time and place to be serious. And to take a serious tone is a paper about myself? Well that just wouldn’t seem right at all.

My writing has changed a great amount from my first paper freshman year to now and it all started with Mr. Brewner. The first paper I did for him was a very formal, straightforward essay or a “tie paper” if you will. As I started to get to know him better, I realized that that isn’t the kind of paper he wanted at all, nor did any other high school English teacher. I used to dread having to write papers but I know now that I can write in my own style and not be marked down for it. In Mr. Brewner’s class, we would have to do a sharable draft every week. I didn’t like the word “sharable” very much. When it comes to writing, I’m not a big fan of sharing it with others. The small amounts of writing that I do, I like to keep to myself, and my teacher of course because if I didn’t share my writing with my teacher I would probably have a few F’s on my report card. I’m not exactly sure why I don’t like other people reading my writing. It’s not like there is anything personal in here or anything embarrassing. I don’t usually care what other people think of who I am as a person. There is just something about my writing that I like kept to myself. My mom will sometimes proof read my paper and I even get a little nervous when she does. My own mother! What is it about my writing that is so sacred to me? I guess if I don’t know the answer to that question then nobody does.

All in all, I think I would win the award for the biggest procrastinator out of all my friends and maybe out of the whole school. The little writing that I do is usually a good expression of who I am as a person. I am very laid back, and don’t take things too seriously. My writing usually stays with my teacher, and me and I am not exactly sure why. I have a feeling though, that I am going to need to get past that if I want to be successful in this class as well as anywhere else.

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