Thursday, April 26, 2012

Final Assessment

Over this past semester my main focus was to become a better writer than when I went into English 101. I feel that I have accomplished many of the goals that I had set for myself. Some of those goals were how to brainstorm and map ideas, how to effectively revise my writing, and how to integrate others ideas into my writing. I know that I have a lot to still work on in my writing, but I feel I have made a giant leap from where I was.

When ever we were told that each post we did had to be about writing I automatically thought about dropping the class, because I have never been good at picking a topic to write about. Then when I got the book On Writing by Stephen King I started to realize that I could use some of the ideas he was talking about in his book and use them in my blog post. One of the post that best demonstrates how I used his book to write my post is What do people usually write about? I felt that this post was a huge improvement from the previous ones. In the first couple post we had I did not use anyone elses ideas and you can tell the improvement in this post.

I also saw that when ever I started to put my post in paragraphs that they started to make more sense and had a much better flow to them as well. In the post What does it take to become a good writer I started to put my main ideas into separate paragraphs which made all the ideas I had come together into one great post. Not only did putting my ideas into paragraphs make the post sound better, but I was also able to write longer post.

One of the main goals I wanted to work on was having consideration for the audience. In many of my past English classes I have been told to work on this goal. I felt like being in this class and having it on the computer made me accomplish this goal. The one post that I think especially relates to the audience is Tell Me a Story. In this post I felt that many audiences could relate to what I wrote. 

I also had a huge problem with procrastination before I took this class, but with every post I found my self getting up early just do it. I do not know if it was because I was having fun, or if I just wanted to get it out of the way. Having fun in this class was my major goal. I am not the type of person who likes to sit at a computer and write all day, but I found myself having fun when I wrote most of the blog posts. The one post I had the most fun with and was probably the best post I had was The 12 and half writing rules you will only need! This post is a great example of everything I learned in this class this semester. I put my main ideas into separate paragraphs, I also used others ideas and put them into my own writing, and I also had great consideration for my audience. 

Even though I accomplished many of my goals for this semester there was still a few I have to work on. I still need to work on proofreading every assessment I do. I also need to work on my introduction and conclusion in every paper or post that I do. This class has helped me out in all of  these areas, but I still need a ton of work to be the writer I know I can be. There is many more areas I need to work on but these are the big ones. I also would like to say that I enjoyed taking this class this semester. I did not think that I was going to do very well on a computer based class, but I proved my self wrong and I want to thank you for that. The advise you gave all of us I know has made us better writers and you can't take many classes that you learn as much as I did in this one.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Perfect Quarterback

For as long as I can remember I have never been good at finding a quote that goes along with a picture, but when I saw this assignment I thought I would challenge myself to find a perfect combo. In this picture Peyton Manning is conducted his offense to make the right play. Around the league Peyton is known for being one of the smartest quarterbacks, and that is what he is showing you in this picture. 

The quote that Brian Urlacher says about Peyton really describes this photo. Brian Urlacher is one of the best players in the league and knows how difficult it is to play against Peyton. What Brian is trying to say in his quote is Peyton is always two steps ahead of everyone else on the field. It's almost like Peyton sees the play happening before it happens. If you do happen to fool Peyton you better know it is  not going to happen again.
"You’re not going to fool Peyton Manning. He knows where he’s going with the football before the snap.—Pro Bowl linebacker Brian Urlacher

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

For this week in ds 106 I  choose to tell a story about my favorite baseball card. The card that has always meant the most to me is Chipper Jones rookie card for the Braves. Ever since I was a little kid Chipper Jones has been my favorite baseball player. Now that he is close to retiring his rookie card means a whole lot more to me.

What makes Chippers card so valuable to me is he has been with the team his whole career. As a huge baseball fan you have to respect a player that stays with one team his whole career. Chippers rookie card just isn't my favorite because he is my favorite player, but his rookie card was the first Brave card I ever got. My grandma got his rookie card for me for Christmas one year. This one card has so much sentimental value to me. 

When I was a little kid I would always look at this card and say that is going to be me in 10 years. I always looked up to Chipper as ball player. I tried to field, hit, and throw just like chipper. I even had his #10 all the way through high school. Chipper is and will always be my favorite baseball player, and his rookie card will always be the first card I take out when I am looking through all my old baseball cards.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Tell me a a story

Who would of ever guessed that a 19 year old college student would still love to play Nintendo 64. Probably no one because not many people even still have a Nintendo 64. Everyone now either has a PlayStation or a x-box.

Every since I was a little kid I have had Nintendo 64, and every time I feel like I need to get away from things you will see playing it. I love all the old games that I used to play as a kid. Every time I play a game on Nintendo 64 it brings up a great memory from my childhood. For you to really know how I feel I am going to explain some pictures that will sum everything up.

These are just a few pictures from the game Mario Kart which was my favorite game to play as a kid. Me and my sister used to play this game for hours. I always used to get mad because she would always beat me.

In this game of course the object is to win the race, but it gets kinda of difficult when the other racers have items that can knock you off the track.

  • 1st Player Select Screen - Mario Kart 64
  • Toad's Highway
  • Banana from Mario kart series
10084 - Mario Kart 64
Cartridge artwork for 007: Golden Eye on the Nintendo N64.
Nintendo 64 N64 Video Game Cartridge Super Mario

These are just a couple of my favorite games to play from Nintendo 64. It was fun
playing them as a kid and it is still fun to play them now as a college student

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

DS 106

I chose to do a writing project for my next post. The assignment I chose to do was "Tell Me a Story". In this assignment you are to find a picture of something that you have emotional attachment to and write about it. I chose this blog because if I chose something that has meaning to me, then I can talk about that all day.  

There are so many great writing assignments in DS106 that it was hard for me to choose one to write about. Another one I thought about doing a post on is called "Find Your Voice". In this writing assignment you are to find another authors blog, and talk about the personal voice in their blog. Your suppose to talk about their post, and find ways to use their voice in your post. When you look through these writing assignments you can tell that all these students put in a great amount of effort.

I know that there is gonna be a few people in the class that do not want to do this project in DS106. Personally I love this website, and can't wait to write about the topic I choose in my blog post. If you actually looked through this website you can tell that it is a great way for all of us to become better writers. Many people have complained that they can't think of anything to write about in their blog post, will if you can't find a topic to write about from this website then there is something wrong with you. 

After actually looking at this website you can tell it was very well put together. I am also excited to get started on this assignment unlike a few in the past. I have also found a couple of different topics that I will enjoy writing about in my next several blog post. I can tell that this project is gonna fun for everyone.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The 12 and half writing rules you will only need!

In many of my recent blog post I have talked about if you practice writing every day you will get better at it. Will that just so happens to be one of the 12 and half rules of writing. If you think about writing is just like a sport. If you do not practice you will never be any good. Take baseball for example, if you do not practice hitting and throwing the ball everyday you will never be the player that you want to be. The same goes for writing. You have to practice everything that is in your toolbox.

Another rule is, writers read, writers read a lot, writers read all the time. The other day I had to do a project on Ben Carson. Ben Carson is a famous neurosurgeon who has performed many brain and spinal surgeries. When Dr. Carson was little he was always called dumb by his peers. So one day his mother decided that she would replace t.v with books. Carson always thanks his mom for making him read at such a young age because if he didn't he would not be the person he is today. Dr. Carson has also written many books, his most famous one being "Gifted Hands". So I guess the rule that writers read all the time is true.

One of my favorite rules is, go for walks, dance, pull weeds, do the dishes. Write about it. I love this rule because it is telling you that anything you do you can write about it. Whenever you write it does not have to be a big drawn out story. You can write what you did for the day for practice, because remember we have to practice every day to become the writer we want to be. Sometimes the stupidest things to write about are the easiest to write about. The dishes for example, I could probably come up with a crazy story about doing the dishes from sometime in my life. So always feel free to write about anything you want.

These are only a few rules out of the 12 and half, but to me these are the most important ones. These three rules I have chosen have helped me become a better writer just this semester. I encourage everyone to take a look at them, and see if there is a way these 12 and half rules can help your writing.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Is there such a thing as writers block?

How many times have you ever been writing a paper, and then boom you are stuck. As writers we call this writers block, but is there such a thing as writers block. I think that writers block is a mind game. We all get stuck on a subject from time to time, but we have to remember we have a toolbox that will get us out of any trouble we are in.

A way to avoid writers block is to write about things you know. If you write about things you know writers block will not exist. Keep focused on the task at hand, and do not start thinking about anything other than the paper you are writing. If you start thinking about the football game that is on T.V then you will probably get off track. Maybe you just need to take a break. Believe it or not will all need time to clear our head and have fun sometimes. After you have cleared your head then come back and try to write your paper.

Always remember that there is many ways to find something to write about. You can always look on the Internet for a subject. There is also a thing called a library where there are books, and you can find ideas from reading books that you like to read. Also if you get stuck when writing about a particular topic then try and find a story about your life that fits with that topic. If you can not talk about yourself then I guess you have more issues than just writers block.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

What do people usually write about?

How do people decide what to write about? I think people write about what they read. If some people like to read horror books then they will write about horror books. Other people may like to read about romances so they will probably write about something romantic. 

I also think people write about what they like not just what they read. If you write about what you like it will always be true, but with your own little spin on things. To make any story your own you have to to put a spin on it. For example I like to play football and I have played since I was six years old. If I was to write a paper about football I would talk about all the great times I had on the field. I would not just talk about the rules of football.

Another bonus for writing about what you like is you will have more to say in your paper. People will not just be rambling on about something they have no clue about. People who write about what they like and what they know can always make a story unique in their own little way.In Stephen Kings book On Writing he says"Write about what you like, then imbue it with life and make it unique by blending in your own personal knowledge of life, friendship, relationships, and work" (King 161). Always remember to be unique and put your own little twist in what you write. No matter what you write about always feel confident about it.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Teaching to Write Shorter

In every writing class that I have ever taken we would always write 500-600 word papers all the time. What if we cut that paper in half, and took out all the sentences we just rambled on about. It would definitely be shorter and most likely be a better paper. First, because we are not making anything up. We are writing about what we know and not lying about anything. Secondly we will make less mistakes.

A teacher named Andy Selsberg has been teaching his students to write shorter for a couple of years now. Andy says as writers "We need to set our sights not lower, but shorter''. I definitely agree with what Andy is saying. If we keep our goals high, but practice writing shorter papers those 500-600 word papers will be much easier.

To become a better writer you have to always practice. By making what your writing shorter you are practing to become a great writer. To some people they may think that setting our sights shorter is like taking a shortcut. When you write shorter you are not hiding anything. You are writing about what you need to and nothing more. Just remeber a lot can be said with a little.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What does it take to become a good writer

In my last blog post I talked about how there is a difference between a good writer and a bad writer. Today I am going to talk about how to become a good writer because isn't that what we all want to be is a good writer. As we all know with anything you do you have to practice at it all the time to be good at it. When your practicing though don't just do it because you have to, do it because you want to.  Like Stephen king says in his book On Writing "practice is invaluable and should feel good, really not like practice at all".

Another tool to becoming a good writer is being honest about what your writing. When you are honest about what you write you will have more to talk about. If you like playing baseball and know everything about it write about it. I guarantee you that you can talk more about baseball than, what do you think about the Alabama school systems. You can always add your own twist to what ever you are writing as long as you are being honest about it.

When writing there is no need to be conservative so be bold and take chances. At the same time though make sure you feel absolutely confident about what you have written. You can't please everyone with what you write, but you need to try and please some people. In Stephen Kings book On Writing he says "Try anything you want boringly normal or outrageous. If it works fine. If it doesn't toss it". To me he is saying take chances and see if they work, but if they don't take them out of your paper. So what does it take to become a good writer? First you have to practice all the time. Second be honest about what you are writing at all times. Lastly take chances but first make sure they fit in what you are writing.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

There is such a thing as Good and Bad writers

In writing there is such a thing as good and bad writers. The category I would fall under is a bad writer. I know as you read this you think this person has no confidence, but I am just being honest. In the book On writing by Stephen King he says that you can become a good writer or even a great writer with hard work, dedication, and timely help. I mean how did the people we all call great writers become great writers. They worked hard at it, and I am sure somewhere down the road someone helped them become the writer they knew they could become.

In Stephen Kings book On Writing he says there is two things to become a better writer, read a lot and write a lot. This goes back to the hard work and dedication we were talking about in the last paragraph. If you do not read and write a lot you will just stay the writer you already are. The reason you read to become a better writer is to measure yourself up against other writers to see where you stand. You may also find your self adopting a style of writing that you find exciting.

To become a good writer not only do you have to find the time, but also the joy to become a good writer. Do not just write because you have to. Find a way that makes writing fun to you.Once you do this you will work harder and see the many improvements you have made. Writing is just like a sport.  If you love to play baseball you will hit off the tee for hours to improve your swing. The same goes for writing, if you want to become a better writer you first have to find the joy to write and practice at it. So find the joy to write and become a great writer not just a good writer.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Writing about what you Know

Over the many years that I have been writing I can not remember the last time I wrote about something I knew. In my opinion if you write about something you know, you will have more knowledge to write a great paper. I will not be lying about what I am writing, and sitting there all day thinking about what to write. In stephen Kings book On Writing he says ''If your plumber write about plumbing''. I mean you can write more than just about plumbing. The plumber could write about trying out for a professional baseball team, but the whole time he is still a plumber talking about his life up till he tries out for the team.

If I was to choose something to write about it would be about football. I know everything there is to know about football. So I would not be lying about anything in my story. I would also put my own twist in my story about football. I would not just write about the rules. I would write about the friendships I gained in football, or the close games I played in that were so much fun.

In Stephen Kings book On Writing he talks about John Grisham's breakout novel, The firm. The story talks about a young lawyer who ends up working for the mafia. My point is that John Grisham wrote a story about a lawyer and he knew about lawyers. H was not lying about anything in his story he just put his only little twist on it.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Challenges of Writing

When I write I face many challenges. I believe you have to face challenges in writing so you can become a better writer. Some of the challenges I face are I have to many run-on sentences, I do not put the comma in the right spot, or I do not use the right grammar. When I am writing I want to notice that I  am overcoming these challenges. The only way to overcome these challenges is to just keep writing.

One challenge I find hard in writing is learning the different ways to write. The way you have to change your mood when you are talking to a certain audience. Another challenge is vocabulary. I do not have the best use of vocabulary so When I write I just keep it short and sweet. Stephen King talks about Vocabulary in his book On Writing. He says to become a better writer you have to put Vocabulary on the top shelf of your toolbox. I guess thats a way to overcome the challenge of vocabulary put it on the top shelf of my writing toolbox.

To me to become better writers we have to face our challenges. Put your challenges in a toolbox and have them in differnt shelfs. I would put vocabulary on my first shelf and work down from there. Also face your challenges as a writer and you probably become a better writer.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

As a writer I do not feel very confident. I have always felt that sometimes I do not have a purpose to write, so I do not put as much into my writing as I should. Over the years I have tried to learn ways to become a better writer, but I know have a ways to go. I want to be able to feel confident about writing, and not think I am a bad writer. When people read my papers I want them to think I actually cared about what I was writing. Over the years I have had many classes that I have helped me feel more confident in my writing, but I want to get to the point where I am not making any mistakes in my papers. To me writing is the most important thing you can learn as a student. When you go out into the real world writing is the most important thing you need to know. Every job you will ever have will require you to write. That's why as a student I want to learn as much about writing as I can. In the past I have had a bad attitude towards writing because I have always been told my writing is not that good. I know now that I am a little older that if you have bad attitude towards writing then the worse your writing is going to be. From now on as a writer I want to always have a purpose to write, and express the way I feel about certain things in my writing. I want to change the way I have always thought about writing. I have always kinda thought it was pointless. Until last semester when I finally figured out how important writing actually was. It was not just writing but learning to write the way you should. Feeling you have a purpose to write, and no matter what anyone says about your writing you feel confident in it. I learned last semester that I could write with purpose. There was papers I would make errors on, but that can always be fixed with practice. There is so much I want to learn this semester about writing. I want to be able express my self more and give more detail in my writing. Overall I just want to become a better writer.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The one rule by Vonnegut that will be hard for me to follow will be sound like your self. When I am writing papers I tend to not always sound like myself. This is the one rule I want to work on as a writer. When I was reading Vonneguts writing I was trying to think of ways to sound like myself in my writing. So this rule would definitly be the hardest for me to follow.


Hi, my name is Dakota Hill. I go to school at Jacksonville State University. Which is located in Alabama. I am originally from Bremen,Ga. This is my first time even doing a blog so i am excited to be learning how to do it.