Congratulations on taking this big step in committing to write, read, learn, and grow as a writer over the next six weeks. Having the desire to write the stories that are most important to you is great, but that alone won’t take you to the point of holding your book in your hands. By participating in this class, you are giving legs to your intention. Well done!
We are going to have fun in our time together, but I know you will learn a little bit as well. I am so glad to see you all again, and welcome, Amanda. I know you are going to be a great asset to our group.
I Love Gootie
I have no doubt we are going to enjoy reading I Love Gootie by Max Apple and learn a great deal from his brand of storytelling that we can apply to our own writing. Each week, we’ll read about fifty pages or so and discuss them in class. Practice close reading, formulate questions, look for answers, mark up the text, and come prepared to share your insights, questions, and reactions to the text.
We’re going to use a buddy system this session. You can also call these people accountability partners. I’ve assigned you a partner to whom I encourage you to talk to once a week. It can be a five‐minute conversation or much longer, whatever you’d like. You can set up a specific time to talk or just wing it. Discuss issues you’re having with your writing, something you learned, how you’re doing with the assignments, anything of your choice. This is not about becoming best friends. If that happens, great, but this is about helping each other write. Use the contact info sheet handed out in our first class to contact your buddy.
Every week you’ll receive both reading and writing assignments. The writing assignments, usually tied to the text we’re reading Love Gootie, are designed to provide an opportunity to practice various aspects of good writing. Please post your assignments and share your experience of writing it–what you learned, where you struggled, and so forth.
Word Count Spreadsheet
The word-count spreadsheet is a tool I use every day and one that has worked successfully for members of other classes. In it, you can enter the number of words you wrote that day. This is a tool for people who find keying in a number of words a fine reward for that day’s efforts. It also shows you quickly what you have accomplished. Here’s an example:
1 page per day, you will have written 7,500 words or a 20-page book at the end of 30 days
1.5 pages per day, you will have written 11,250 words or a 32-page book at the end of 30 days
2.0 pages per day, you will have written 15,000 words or a 43-page book at the end of 30 days
2.5 pages per day, you will have written 18,750 words or a 54-page book at the end of 30 days
3 pages per day, you will have written 22,500 words or a 64-page book at the end of 30 days
3.5 pages per day, you will have written 26,250 words or a 75-page book at the end of 30 days
4.0 pages per day, you will have written 30,000 words or an 86-page book at the end of 30 days