Friday, April 20, 2007

You Can Write Personal Essays

You can write a personal essay. Use my friend in Florida as a template. Pick a group of friends and/or family whom you trust with your inner thoughts. Start writing them emails. You don't have to tell them you're doing an exercise in personal essays. Just keep in touch with them. Write about your life and what you’re doing. Maybe even stir things up with some controversial topic that has snagged your interest. Express a pet peeve. Play witness to some big event -- or even a small event.

After a while, ease yourself into thinking that these are indeed personal essays, not just random writings. Did you start with a hook? Were you descriptive? Did you dig deep within yourself and your emotions? Did the essay come full circle and end with a hook or twist? What was the theme of your story? What was your purpose?

Why should you write personal essays? It's a good way to improve your writing. It keeps you writing, even when you may be stuck on some other project. It keeps you in touch with family and friends. It allows you to express yourself. You learn about yourself. You learn about those to whom you're writing. Eventually, you produce your life story, or at least a big chunk of it.

I could go on and on. You could come up with plenty more reasons to write personal essays. Feel free to write me an email with your reasons and how they are personal to you. Tell me a story to demonstrate. Remember Miss Lacey and her jump-up-twirl-around cussing in church? She had an epiphany. Now it's time to have yours.

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