It’s my birthday. I wish I had some witty thing to say, but mostly I’m just happy to see your beautiful faces today. I consider myself one of the luckiest people on earth to get to know new –and remarkable– students every year. 🙂
In class, you’ll have your first meeting discussing your book with others who are reading the same title.
Commencing today, we are learning and practicing a new critical reading skill. I would call it “reading like a writer.” In fact, that’s how I think of this unit in general. As a result, the reading you do in your chosen memoir as well as in the sample excerpts we’ll all study together has only one real purpose: to prepare you to write a memoir. In other words, our reading is in service of writing that is to come (Task 4). I do this because it’s the most practical way possible to learn to read like a writer. You start paying attention to how the writer is writing rather than just to the content of the text because you’ll need the information! 🙂
In class, I’ll give you an extensive Memoir Journal Prompt and a sample journal entry (it’s the same I’ve used with Creative Writing students, and appropriately so for this unit). The prompt is one that’s targeted to help you analyze like a writer, so it may feel slightly uncomfortable at first. But you have time to practice over the several meetings you will have with your group.
- Your mission in your meeting is to do the thinking and planning for the journal entry by talking about the issue
- Then tonight, please write out the actual journal entry.