22 September 2013
Technology's Impact on Writing: The Final Frontier?
Will my growth as a writer ever stop? Is technology’s impact on my growth as a writer the final frontier? Or will it just continue to be an old friend who continues to help me develop into a better writer?
Honestly, I was never a great writer when it came to writing any essay. The prompts that I had to write about usually daunted and frustrated me because of their increasing difficulty and my deteriorating skills as a writer. I remembered that I would receive failing letter grades on my writing assignments, which sometimes were included with comments of harsh criticism or words urging me to improve. I remembered that my teacher once wrote, "Seriously?... Are you ever going to get better?". I remembered my peers even once murmured amongst themselves during lunch that I was mostly likely to be the only one to fail the upcoming writing test for the semester, and they continued to gossip throughout the next several weeks.
I have always used this "pain" from my writing failures and criticism in order to motivate myself to improve, yet that could never happen. I would always have writers block. I would always take forever to write an essay. Unequivocally speaking, my handwriting was just utterly despicable to look at, and I wrote pretty slow compared to everyone else.
Yet, my writing in my sixth grade English class was when it all changed.
Two weeks before my peers and I had to take the writing test, my sixth grade English teacher, Ms. Mather, announced that we would be using the school issued computers to plan and write our essays. I was thrilled with the news because I frankly had little association with technology at that time.
I immediately came home and experimented with the different functions of the computer, most specifically, the word processor. Now, I could easily type a page long essay in a mere hour or less, rather than have to spend time writing on paper and wasting precious time. Thus, I was motivated to experiment with creative writing. I was prompted to brainstorm ideas with the usage of the computer's access to useful websites, such as Google and Wikipedia, when dealing with broad range topics, etc. I didn't even have to worry about the legibility of my writing because the all the fonts were neat. Best of all, grammar and spelling where dealt with as well. In addition, I did not have to look up words for better diction and spell check for the most case.
Some may argue that this created a lazy persona as a writer because the computer did most things for me, but rather, it enhanced my writing capability and mental creativity.
After several days of brainstorming possible prompts our class might be assigned and learning the resourceful tools of the computer, the test prompt was assigned to us, which was actually one of the ones I planned for. Fortunately, by using the internet to brainstorm several days before, I was the first one to start typing my essay while most suffered "brain farts".
As I was the first and quickest to complete my essay, I submitted it on time, while most had to submit their unfinished essays. I finished so quickly because of the ability to type on the computer rather than writing that I even had time to proof read, check for any