“Despite what you have been taught about writing, many writing scholars believe that good writing takes hard work

and multiple drafts and that many of us are hampered from being better writers by the “rules” and misconceptions we have been taught about writing. This is true even of very famous people who write a lot every day. When Sonia Sotomayor joined the United States Supreme Court, she had been widely criticized for her writing. She even criticizes herself, saying, “Writing remains a challenge for me even today-everything I write goes through multiple drafts-I am not a natural writer.” Here she conflates being a “good” writer with being a “natural” writer; she seems to believe that some people are born good writers and some people aren’t. Her conceptions is that a “good” writer only has to write one draft; anyone who has to write multiple drafts must be a “bad” writer. Even from this one short quotation, you can see that Sonia Sotomayor’s conceptions (constructs) of writing are limiting and would not hold up if closely examined by the researchers and professional writers in this chapter.

Purpose:

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For this assignment, your purpose is to analyze a preconceived idea that you might have about writing.  Ultimately, your job is to inform the audience you’ve been given about this preconceived idea and use what you’ve learned through the articles to suggest to your audience alternative ways to address that issue with future students. For example, perhaps you’ve believed your entire life that good writing means perfect grammar. Perhaps this notion arose from teacher after teacher placing way too much emphasis on grammar instead of content. So, in your paper, you would suggest to educators a more effective perspective on grammar based on what you’ve learned in this class.” 

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