I should stop checking my grades. I did this for a couple of months last year because I hated how I felt after I checked. It usually led to disappointment or frustration. To be honest, a combination of both sounds about right.
I feel like I can never be satisfied with my grades. No matter how “good” they are.
Admittedly they aren’t great this year. This semester especially. But even when I do well by someone else’s standards, I don’t feel satisfied. Because I’m meeting (or not meeting) other people’s expectations rather than my own. I’m writing for someone else who isn’t myself. And I’ve found having to do the very thing you love most for a grade is messed up in a way.
Let me be the first to tell you I often get too caught up with the creative process and the words themselves that I neglect everything else. The assignment instructions. My argument and evidence. I could go on.
Also, I hate the idea of someone five years older than me deciding my entire grade. Something there doesn’t sit well with me. Actually many things. It’s not my main problem with grades though.
It’s feeling like a number or percentage defines me. As if one grade defines my value or worth. Since when did I care for numbers? I’m a writer after all.
If you are struggling to meet your word count, try…
Spelling out contractions.
Works very well for academic writing. Not so much for dialogue in stories. But desperate times call for desperate measures.
Spelling out numbers.
One thousand four hundred and sixty eight. Seven words right there. I can count.
Use five dollar words.
This goes against everything you know? Well, that’s life for you.
Use five cent words.
Every word is another word. But remember, not all words are equal.
Open a thesaurus.
Then proceed to replace one word with two, three, ten even.
Keep the thesaurus open.
See how many synonyms you can string together in a sentence.
Do not hyphenate.
Rebel. Refuse. Resist.
Do not combine words.
Rain bow. Snow man. Sun shine.
Forget you read any of this. Forget I even wrote it. Forget about my blog.
Dear Readers and Writers,
The rate at which you read or write does not define you.
Who cares for arbitrary numbers anyway? Words rule. Stories run the world.
Do not degrade yourself because of your speed or lack thereof.
A reader and writer who takes her sweet time when reading and writing.
Math. Calculations. Basic adding and subtracting. Doing anything remotely related to mathematics at night doesn’t work for me. Ever.
Ironically some of my best writing happens at night. Even more ironic, I used to enjoy math. At one point, I was actually good with numbers. But now I’m a words person.
And I have no regrets. If I hadn’t found my true calling, I would be working with numbers all the time. Yuck.