Monday, October 13, 2008

Hemmingway Metacognition

This paper really was a bit difficult for my own writing style. Although aware that it will “broaden my horizons,” I struggled to find the hidden Hemmingway inside of me. Whenever I have written a short story of some type, I always seem to choose something related to Poe. He is my inspirational writer. I felt as if I would never be able to transfer from writing like Poe, to writing like Hemmingway. I then thought of an idea. I decided I wanted to somehow combine the two writers, while still following the real instructions behind the assignment.
I began by making a chart listing all of the similarities and differences between the two writing styles. I realized that although Poe is at times, very descriptive, he does it in a short way. Hemmingway also writes with short sentences. Although Poe doesn’t really add conversation into his work the way Hemmingway does, I knew that I could somehow insert it inside my writing. I came to the final conclusion that I would write a story similar to Poe’s “A Tell Tale Heart,” but write it in the style of Hemmingway. I was very unsure about how to go about doing this, but as I started writing it became more and more natural.
I really thought that my first draft was rather well written. Then we had peer evaluation in class. Both Cynthia and Kayla told me that I just needed some more back and fourth conversation throughout my writing. I got a bit nervous when I heard this. It was hard to have conversations when most characters in Poe’s writing tend to be anti-social. So I continued to think. As I was thinking, I figured out that in my head at that exact moment, I was arguing with myself trying to figure out what I could do. Then it hit me. I could have my main character, who remains unnamed, have conversations with not only the female character, but himself as well. This gave me the opportunity to imply the difficulty that readers may have when reading Hemmingway’s writing. It is sometimes confusing to figure out who is talking at the moment. Once I read the final draft, I knew that the style was much more similar to Hemmingway’s than it had been before. The fact that someone else read my paper and told me how to improve it really helped me in my thinking process.
I feel as if I do need more work on mocking the style of others, but I feel like this really was the first step. It was a large step as well. I really believe I was able to mock his style better than I would have been if I had not taken this class. Combining the two writers seemed almost impossible at first, but once I sat there and broke everything down it came pretty quickly to me. I was able to pick up on both Hemmingway and Poe’s strong points, and somehow create a connection between them. In the future, I hope to be able to take two completely different styles that have nothing in common, and somehow make a relationship between them. Mocking styles is very difficult for me, and I would really like to improve and be able to mock any style given to me.
This whole assignment opened up my way of thinking, and I feel as if I am thinking beneath the surface rather than above it like I used to.

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