Monday, July 29, 2013

Nobody Likes Mondays

Last trimester, Monday was my favourite day of the week because both the lecture and my tutorial for Writing Craft were that morning. Writing Craft has been replaced with Writing Spaces this trimester and while both of my classes are still on the Monday, Monday has stopped being my favourite day of the week. Why? I asked myself this too, but the answer is quite simple and I already knew it.

Writing Spaces is supposed to be about learning to write in the different 'spaces' or 'formats'. For example, the unit is covering how to write in script, creative non-fiction, poetry, prose, etc. We've had a different person take the lecture every week. The first guy was okay, but the lesson was boring and irrelevant because it was just introductory 'making sure everybody knows how to use the unit guide' stuff. I think he'd have the potential to be engaging if he'd actually taught us something for the subject. The person who ran the second lecture, last week, and who also runs my tutorial every week... is so boring that it's hard not to zone out, and she doesn't seem to know what she's doing: rather than teaching us about the elements of writing in the spaces that we're trying to learn, she spent both the lecture she hosted and the tutorials only talking about the writing craft elements within the readings. She's frustrating, and I could say much more, but I won't. Oh my she is dreadful.

So thanks to the first week being all about introductory/housekeeping things, and the second week being completely run by the Dreadful One, I didn't learn anything particularly new about script writing. Those were the designated weeks for that 'space'. Basically, dialogue is of utmost importance (the irony of the Dreadful One's every second word being "um"...), directions are important though not AS important, and characters needs to be established and identifiable with certain settings, mannerisms (especially in the way they speak), and their personalities and ways of acting and reacting (which also needs to be communicated mostly through dialogue and some stage-direction). Now I'm sitting here wondering if the Dreadful One even taught us that or if I just assumed she taught us that because it's what I already knew about script-writing. My favourite part was getting to read some of Scott Silver's Untitled Detroit Project, which is based off the life of popular rapper Eminem and was the original script for the movie 8 Mile. I went through a bit of an Eminem phase a few years ago.

When I'm Gone is my all-time favourite Eminem song. I tend to tear up listening to this... 

Stan ft. Dido is my current little Eminem obsession. 

Today, week 3, we moved on to creative non-fiction as a writing space. We had another different lecturer, who was engaging, informative and just generally awesome. Some friends and I were saying how much we enjoyed the lecture afterwards. Unfortunately, I still had the Dreadful One in my tutorial, which was unproductive as far as learning about creative non-fiction as a writing space went. Hopefully we'll learn a little more in next week's classes, or at least the lecture. I'll make a post about that when it's time. 

In other news: I am still unemployed. Seriously, somebody hire me, I'm a poor uni student, have mercy! On a lighter note, I'M A STEP-AUNTIE to an adorable and chubby little boy. My dad and his dad have already decked him up with St Kilda (AFL team) teddy bears and Metallica beanies (alternating with the Winnie the Pooh beanie his mother has supplied) and I swear that if the 7am phone call I got from my dad had been for any other reason than to inform me that the baby had finally arrived, he would have be in big trouble for waking me up so early on a weekend. And last of all, a happy 3rd anniversary for tomorrow (30th) to my boyfriend, Aaron. 

I'm sick, lacking sleep, and feeling that I've raged and rambled more than I'm comfortable with in a blog post, so I'll say goodnight here and be off to bed. 

How has everybody else's writing and education and writing education been coming along? Who's an Eminem fan? Any special little announcements to make? 

- Bonnee. 


  1. Aww, congratulations to your family on the little one! That's so exciting! There's just nothing like a brand new baby to make the whole world seem bright and sunshiney.

    Feel better soon!

    1. My family keeps sending me photos of him and his parents are putting even more up on facebook. I love him already!

      Thanks Shari :)

  2. "Basically, dialogue is of utmost importance (the irony of the Dreadful One's every second word being 'um')..."

    Breathless gasp! It's the fabled verbal tic! I thought I'd never hear about it in real life! Except for this one teacher I had who'd end every sentence with a cheerful "Mmm-hmmm." And another teacher who'd end more than a few statements with "right?" And another teacher who...may or may not have been racist. Or at least prejudiced against afros.

    Teachers are something else.

    Silliness aside, I understand what you're getting at here. Dialogue is important, but it's more important to give each character a distinct voice and style of speaking. After all, the way one character describes something isn't exactly how another character might -- and those differences can reveal a lot about personalities, preferences, and motivations. (That's something you can see in real life, obviously; looks aside, you can tell me and my brother apart by the way we describe things...or just speak in general.)

    Whatever the case, dialogue is something I'll have to keep in mind from here on out. I've been toiling away at making a web serial novel over on my blog, and one of the things I'm getting increasingly mindful of is the way each character talks. I want to reach a point where readers can tell who's speaking even without me saying so, and if my execution holds out there's a good chance my cast will be as distinct as they are colorful. Sometimes you just have to give it a go.

    Anyway, hope things go well on your end. Congrats on becoming a step-aunt, endure the trials of the Dreadful One, and keep on blazing down the road of the writer. It's whimsical. Or something.

    1. Verbal tics are the worst... I had one teacher last trimester who ended every sentence with "Does that make sense?" Infuriating. Though I found the "um" of the Dreadful One more ironic than annoying... though it was pretty annoying too, because she seemed to have no idea what she was saying and took ages to say it.

      I think it's a great thing to know the difference between different characters based on how they speak. You know you've got good character voice and style when your reader can spot the character just by the dialogue.

      Thanks for stopping by again :)

  3. Hope you feel better!

    I have to say, I was sitting here for the first few paragraphs trying to figure out what the hell you meant by 'how to write in script'. I'm thinking, "Longhand? How does that make any sense?" It wasn't until near the end that I realized what you meant. I think I'm slightly addled from too many ales.

    And congrats on being an Auntie!

    1. Ha ha! That's funny :) Though for the record, my handwriting is pretty appalling. Enjoy the ales and thanks for stopping by :D

  4. Congrats for being an auntie and happy anniversary to you and your boyfriend. Teachers come and go, the bad and the good ones, so just wait for next semester. I never got Eminem, but I like his song "Love The Way You Lie" with Rihanna. One of the best songs for those who don't like Mondays is "I don't like Mondays" by The Boomtown Rats. When I was a student, I worked in the library in the evenings and also during the night at reception in Hotel. Check if there are Hotels close to you. Working there at night is great, because there's no much to do (just check in and out a few guests) and you can study while working. Best wishes and visit my blog end of the week to learn about New York City.

    1. Thanks Giora. I'm holding out for better teachers next year, but I guess I'll just have to put up with it for now and do my best. "Love The Way You Lie" is a great song too :)

      Speaking of working in the library: the library here is advertising Student Rover positions for next year, which I'm in the process of applying for (they're not hiring anymore for this year). Hotels might be a good idea... hmm :)

      I'll be sure to swing by your blog later to read your new post :) Thanks for stopping by again, Giora!

  5. Ugh. That does sound tough. I hope you start getting some good instructors and relevant lectures soon!

    1. The lecture of the week just been was pretty good. Hopefully we'll have that lecturer again soon... Thanks for stopping by Caryn :)

  6. The Dreadful One -- I hope none of my students call me that behind my back! =]

    1. You're engaging and informative in your blog-posts. I'd imagine you're even more so in person. I don't think you need to worry about that :)


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