14170The Writing Assignment
- Jul 1, 2005Thanks to Judi Rhodes for sharing this jem....
Well, here is a true life example from the Phoenix College.
An English Professor assigned his students to a joint writing
exercise that quickly degraded - check it out...
"Today we will experiment with a new form called the tandem story.
The process is simple. Each person will pair off with the person
sitting to his or her immediate right."
"As homework tonight, one of you will write the first paragraph of a
short story. You will e-mail your partner that paragraph and send
another copy to me. The partner will read the first paragraph and then
add another paragraph to the story and send it back also sending
another copy to me. The first person will then add a third paragraph,
and so on, back and forth."
"Remember to re-read what has been written each time in order to
keep the story coherent. There is to be absolutely NO talking outside
of the e-mails and anything you wish to say must be written in the
"The story is over when both agree a conclusion has been reached."
The following was actually turned in by two of my English students:
Rebecca (last name deleted), and Gary (last name deleted).
(First paragraph by Rebecca)
At first, Laurie couldn't decide which kind of tea she wanted. The
chamomile, which used to be her favorite for lazy evenings at
home, now reminded her too much of Carl, who once said, in
happier times, that he liked chamomile. But she felt she must
now, at all costs, keep her mind off Carl. His possessiveness was
suffocating, and if she thought about him too much her asthma started
acting up again. So chamomile was out of the question.
(Second paragraph by Gary)
Meanwhile, Advance Sergeant Carl Harris, leader of the attack
squadron now in orbit over Skylon 4, had more important things to
think about than the neuroses of an air-headed asthmatic bimbo
named Laurie with whom he had spent one sweaty night over a year
ago. "A.S. Harris to Geostation 17", he said into his
transgalactic communicator. "Polar orbit established. No sign of
resistance so far...But before he could sign off, a bluish particle
beam flashed out of nowhere and blasted a hole through his ship's
cargo bay. The jolt from the direct hit sent him flying out of his
seat and across the cockpit.
He bumped his head and died almost immediately, but not before he
felt one last pang of regret for psychically brutalizing the one
woman who had ever had feelings for him. Soon afterwards, Earth
stopped its pointless hostilities towards the peaceful farmers of
Skylon 4. "Congress Passes Law Permanently Abolishing War and Space
Travel," Laurie read in her newspaper one morning. The news
simultaneously excited her and bored her. She stared out the window,
dreaming of her youth, when the days had passed unhurriedly and
carefree, with no newspapers to read, no television to distract her
from her sense of innocent wonder at all the beautiful things around
her. "Why must one lose one's innocence to become a woman?"
she pondered wistfully.
Little did she know, but she had less than 10 seconds to live.
Thousands of miles above the city, the Anu'udrian mothership launched
the first of its lithium fusion missiles. The dimwitted wimpy
peaceniks that pushed the Unilateral Aerospace Disarmament Treaty
through the congress had left Earth a defenseless target for the
hostile alien empires who were determined to destroy the human race.
Within two hours after the passage of the treaty the Anu'udrian
ships were on course for Earth, carrying enough firepower to pulverize
the entire planet. With no one to stop them, they swiftly initiated
their diabolical plan. The lithium fusion missile entered the
atmosphere unimpeded. The President, in his top-secret mobile
submarine headquarters on the ocean floor off the coast of Guam, felt
the inconceivably massive explosion, which vaporized poor, stupid,
Laurie and 85 million other Americans. The President slammed his fist
on the conference table. "We can't allow this! I'm going to veto that
treaty! Let's blow 'em out of the sky!"
This is absurd. I refuse to continue this mockery of literature.
My writing partner is a violent, chauvinistic semiliterate adolescent.
Yeah? Well, you're a self-centered tedious neurotic whose attempts
at writing are the literary equivalent of Valium. "Oh shall I have
chamomile tea? Or shall I have some other sort of F***ING TEA???
Oh no, I'm such an air headed bimbo who reads too many Danielle
SC*** YOU - YOU NEANDERTHAL!!!
GO DRINK SOME TEA - B***h.
A+ - I really liked this one. Only group to get an A.
- Next post in topic >>