Introductions & What This Class Is About

1st Day Handout

"For me and most of the other writers I know, writing is not rapturous. In fact, the only way I can get anything written at all is to write really, really shitty first drafts." from Anne Lamott, "Shitty First Drafts"

  • The difference between an "English" Class and a "writing class"
  • Overview of Composition Studies
  • Writing goes out into the world and makes stuff happen.
  • Writing and technology
  • My life as a writer
    • I wrote every day, on deadline, from 1991-2003 when I was a broadcast journalist!
    • Here's one example of work I've published as a Technical and Professional Writer

What's Our Reason to Write? Our theme for the semester: FOOD in American Society


But wait...there's more: http://www.brandeating.com/2015/06/review-carls-jr-most-american-thickburger.html

Course Basics & Introductions

  • Begin reading the handout as soon as you arrive, and then we'll go over the essentials
    • Attendance
    • Text book
    • Class Plans: READ the class plans every day before we begin!
    • Make sure you can access the class and the syllabus. We'll be using two platforms this session: wiki and Black Board.

Write an Email to Jen

  • Please use your Islander Email account.
  • In an email to me (type your name and class section in the subject heading), please discuss the following:
    • Your past writing experiences in general (good, bad, so-so?)
    • Your past writing experiences at TAMUCC (good, bad, so-so?)
    • Did you take English 1301? Where? Who was your instructor?
    • Your phone #
    • Let me know if you prefer to go by a name other than what's on the official roster.
    • Your major
    • Outside commitments (work, other summer school classes, etc.)

After you finish writing...class discussion:

  • How were you aware of audience, purpose, and forum as you wrote the email?

Pollan Book Review

Break (10 minutes)

Daily Writing:

Step 1
Go to the link in the Blackboard Journal and free write based on the following prompts:

  • What did you eat for breakfast this morning? Why this food choice?
  • Describe your personal relationship to food.
  • Based on this, classify yourself. Categories you may want to consider:
    • Junk Food Junkie
    • Strict vegetarian
    • Unapologetic Carnivore
    • Health Conscious
    • Average American Eater
    • Standard American Diet (SAD) Eater (what might the difference be between this and the category above?)
    • Vending Machine Connoisseur
    • Meal Prep Passionate

Step 2
Once you're done with your definitions, find a partner.

  • Find similarities and differences in your responses.
  • Why are they different?
  • How are your backgrounds different?
  • Do you share similar communities?

Step 3
Share your findings with the class. Introduce your partner and explain how each of you are similar or different in your food habits.

Purpose of First-Class Activity

  • You will have a daily, in-class writing assignment every day.
  • Class discussion is another important component of the course.
  • Civil interaction among classmates is essential...eventually we'll form writing groups and presentation teams.
  • I encourage you to examine the issues we'll be discussing with an open mind.
  • And finally we will determine how this all relates to major writing assignments.

Start reading and exploring this wiki site and the possible articles you'll examine for your first writing assignment.

We'll Review the Homework Assignment

If There's Time... Pollan on Sustainability
Feel free to watch this on your own if we don't get to it in class today.

Homework for Next Class:

  • READ the course materials:
    • First, finish reading the entire 1302 - Summer II Syllabus! I cannot emphasize how important this is. You will save yourself a lot of headaches if you read this now.
    • Become familiar with my website
    • Come to our next class meeting with questions!
    • READ "Shitty First Drafts" by Anne Lamott AND pp. 15-34 in your text, Naming What We Know. (BTW, hereafter, I'll refer to our text simply as NWWK. Come to class on Wednesday prepared to contribute thoughtfully to our discussion. You may want to jot some of your thoughts down on paper, hint hint.
  • If you were having login issues on the first day, make sure these are resolved by Wednesday. Go to passwords.tamucc.edu or call the help desk at (361) 825-2692.
  • READ http://michaelpollan.com/articles-archive/unhappy-meals/"Unhappy Meals" by Michael Pollan. I'd encourage you to take notes as you read.
  • Create a Reading Response in which you respond to the following prompts:
    • Why did George McGovern's "Dietary Goals" initiative fail, according to Pollan?
    • Explain why Pollan thinks the rise of "nutritionism" is a bad thing. Do you agree or disagree with this? Support your position.
    • Describe your main "take-away from reading Pollan's article.
  • Bring this as a printed version to class on Wednesday. Reading Responses are due at the beginning of class and will not be accepted late.
  • Bring your text book to class tomorrow.

Want to get ahead? READ: "The Extraordinary Science of Junk Food" by Michael Moss
Have a fun and safe 4th of July! See you on Wednesday!