Coming into the Living Picture Narrative, I was really excited. I really liked having the opportunity of writing about something that I was passionate about and familiar with. Even with the familiarity I had with my topic, it was still a bit difficult to plan out the essay and figure out how I wanted it to sound. The thoughts in my head felt jumbled at the beginning; and during my revision process, I felt like I was being pulled in every direction. Nevertheless, with the help of the resources we were provided and the advice from peer revision, I was able to overcome these obstacles. From my experiences writing the Living Picture Narrative, my writing and revision processes grew and developed.
First, writing this paper advanced my writing process. Before taking this class, I usually just tried to brainstorm and map out my essay in my head before writing the first draft. However, this was inefficient because I would sometimes become overwhelmed by the numerous ideas that popped up in my mind. In class, we were introduced to Anne Lamott's article, "Shitty First Drafts." From Lamott, I learned that a good method to start an essay is to free-write a poor first draft. This way, I can get all of the ideas in my head onto paper and actually have them solidified. After putting all of my thoughts to paper, I read the draft and looked for any ideas that I liked. If one idea worked, I would expound on it to form my next draft that was more focused. For future projects, I plan to incorporate free-writing as my way to brainstorm ideas and see which ideas appease the prompt instead of staring at my computer and mentally formulating a plan for my essay. By free-writing, I save more time, efficiency, and brain power.
In addition, the Living Picture Narrative strengthened my rhetorical knowledge processes in revision. While writing the paper, I had to revise my drafts many times and take into consideration the reviews I received from my peers on how I could potentially improve my essay, and what parts were confusing and needed more context. Having the perspectives from my peers really helped me edit my essay. By bringing in an outside point of view, the quality of my revisions grew. Moreover, I improved my skills in revision by taking more time in-between each draft to myself. I discovered that by giving myself more time between each draft, my head was more clear, effective, and aware while I was reading over the draft.
With my improved skills in the revision and writing processes, I plan to incorporate them with my other classes if I ever have to write a research paper for them. I will also be able to use these skills to help me with writing my own thesis if I go to graduate school. This way, I can hopefully have a better time coming up with a topic to write about for my other classes. Finally, I will use these skills in my future career to help perfect my resume, write email notifications to communicate with my team, and coordinate and plan company presentations.