Here’s what I’m great at: writing funny, quasi-meaningful blog posts of modest length in the last remaining fifteen minutes before midnight.
Here’s what I’m lame at: writing four pages of structured, researched content, even when I’m given the whole semester to work on something.
Writing the end-of-semester papers is always a painful process. I’m not sure why. It’s not like I haven’t been writing papers since before my freshman year of collage. They started us off with a research paper my junior year of high school. It’s not like I’m not a writer. It’s not like I don’t know how to put words on paper. I just freeze when I know my grade depends on how well I write.
I’ll stare at a blank page for an hour before a single jot or tittle blots the whiteness. I’m threatened by the tide of information (or lack thereof) sloshing around in my head. I bleed over every sentence, over analyzing the structure, the spelling, the commas, the quotation marks. I can’t just slap something on paper and then go back and fix it. I have to fix it while I’m writing it. I’ve never been able to “rough draft.” I accept nothing less of myself than a perfect first draft. Hence why it takes me so blame long to write anything that I’m proud of. Or of which I am proud.
But, piece by piece, word by word, sentence by sentence, I get it done. Four years of higher education, and I have no clue how I’m doing that.
I just finished the second of the Big Papers that are due before the semester ends. Another is due Monday. The other two are due right after Thanksgiving Break.
Allow me a deep breath before the plunge.