A Manifesto and Mission for Writing

Blog Picture Amanda SzramiakBy Amanda Szramiak – Happy Summer!

In my last blog post, I talked about my semester of work in the writing center. For our final project, we had to create a “Manifesto” describing our writing center philosophy in a creative way. I mentioned my writing center values in my previous post, but I wanted to share more of my philosophy.

In my personal manifesto artwork, I created four different canvases to represent my tutoring philosophy. Although my strongest values of creating a comforting and collaborative environment may not be known to the naked eye, I hope to explain my vision.

The two canvases with the silver centers represent my value of creating a comforting and reassuring environment. C. S. Lewis states, “You can make anything by writing.” In order for students to realize they are in a safe and welcoming environment, I aim to reassure them that they can create anything by writing. This quote represents creating a comforting environment because it shows the writer any type of writing is welcomed and accepted in a writing center session with me.

Joseph Heller states, “Every writer I know has trouble writing,” so I aim to give the writers I see a personal example of a time I struggled with the same thing they are currently struggling with. By showing them this quotation, I reassure the writer that all writers, no matter their expertise, struggle from time to time and make certain they feel that they are not alone in the writing session but, more importantly, in the writing process.

The two canvases with the gold centers represent my vision of creating a collaborative environment. Doris Lessing states, “You only learn to be a better writer by actually writing.” To me, this quote embodies the importance of creating a collaborative and productive environment. In order become a better writer, you must actually write, and I hope to make all the writers aware of this simple concept. Although some believe they are simply bad writers, I hope to make it extremely clear that the only way they will improve their writing is by actually writing, and when they are reluctant to actually write, I let them know I will be there to work collaboratively with them during their writing processes.

Similarly, Ray Bradbury states, “You only fail when you stop writing.” In addition to explaining the importance of actually writing, I want to make all the writers I see aware that failure in writing only comes about when you stop writing. I understand that some may not want to write or even care about writing, I nevertheless urge that ceasing writing entirely will not solve any problems.

For artistic appeal, I used gold and silver to differentiate between the values. I chose to have gold represent my value of creating a collaborative and productive environment because I believe if I achieve that, I receive a gold metal. Although I believe creating a comforting environment is absolutely essential in my tutoring practice, I believe having the writer leave with their expectations being accomplished is slightly more important. I chose the light and dark blues for the aesthetic appeal with the gold and silver.

The different shapes created from the lines represent my relationship with the writers, and although the lines all make up different shapes and triangles, they are all connected. This symbolizes how writing is the connection that brings the writer and myself together. Even though all the lines and shapes are different (similar to the writers and their writing being different), I remain connected to all writers because of their single guaranteed commonality: writing.

After a semester of hard work and dedication to the writing center, I am happy to announce I did get the job as a tutor! Next semester, make sure to come and visit me!

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