A good writer, particularly one who wants to write to change the world, understands his or her own world view. What is a world? What is a view?

Well, a look in the dictionary tells us that  world  is a noun and can mean:
1 : the earth and all the people and things upon it
2 : people in general : HUMANITY
3 : the system of created things : UNIVERSE
4 : the concerns of the earth and human affairs
5 : human society
6 : a class of persons sharing a common interest or activity
7 : a part or section of the earth and the people who live in it
8 : the scene of one's life and action

The word view,in this instance, is a noun and can mean:

1: the act of seeing or examining
3 : all that can be seen from a certain point
4 : range of vision

So, when we say world view, we mean the way that we see the many worlds we live in. There are many influences on how we see our worlds--our heritage, our family, where we live, what experiences we've had, what we like to do, our friends, our teachers, the type of government we have, even the type of home we live in!

Knowing what influences each one of us can help us to make choices about how we write to influence others.


This week, use the World View worksheet and map your worlds and influences. You'll already have had some time to do this and some discussion about this during our Monday class. Then, write a poem--using the guide I've provided--and post it on your blog. It is a first draft.

Over the next 2 weeks, I would like for you to visit the blogs and read everyone's poem.
  • I'd like for you to identify one ABSTRACT word that the author can UNPACK.
  • I'd also like for you to make a quick comment about something you learned about that person that you didn't know or that surprises you. 

Where I'm From By Scott I am from Texas
where deep in the heart lies Austin.
I am from the sunny Saturday afternoons
of Texas Longhorn football games.
I am from sports
and the lessons that I learn from these games
I play with all my ability and enjoy the victories.

I am from my family, friends,
and awesome food.
I am from my grandmother's warm pies
and my parents cooking, from which
I grew to be a large boy.
I am from Texas barbeque
which smells and tastes like none other.
Although I cannot have it right now
I can still remember.

I am from Tennessee
where I live at the Foothills of the Smokies
and enjoy hiking on clear days.
I am from lessons in literature
and the sounds of a saxophone.
I am from the try your hardest
and never give ups.
I'm from my hard work
and the present as I continue on life's journey.

Good writers show more than tell.  And they do this by unpacking words and sentences like you would unpack a suitcase. They pull out the images and the feelings and the details that help a reader to SEE and EXPERIENCE.  What does this mean?
I can TELL you that I had a bad morning, but what does that mean? What you think is a bad morning might be very different.

Or I can show you...

I thought there was nothing worse than getting in the shower and discovering that there is no more hot water. But it turns out that what is worse is a shower in water that must have come all the way from Antarctica, so cold it made my teeth chatter and my lips turn blue.  I got through it and then discovered that I had no power in the house. I did have daylight, so I had light--but daylight doesn't equal heat, doesn't equal a hot breakfast, and it sure doesn't equal COFFEE.
I figured I'd just get ready for the day as fast I could and then get breakfast and coffee at the Dunkin Donuts down the street. As soon as I walked in there, I could smell the muffins and the coffee and felt a big smile on my face. And I kept on smiling until I had the coffee cup warming my hand, the muffin in a bag on the counter and I reached into my pocketbook for my wallet.

Uh oh.

New Assignment:

1. Go back to your photograph paragraph. Ask a partner to read your paragraph and suggest places where you could unpack and SHOW what is happening or what the photograph means to you. Unpack these places by writing on a separate sheet of paper, just as you wrote the answers to the big potato, small potato questions. Don't worry right now about how it will all go together--we'll talk about that soon!

2. Then, write another paragraph. Write about something that happened in your life or the life of a character. You choose from the list below. See if you can SHOW so well through your writing that I can know which topic you chose--you can't use the word or phrase that is in bold.

Something happened that made you (or your character) sad.
Something happened that made you (or your character) feel like you had the best family in the world.
Something happened that was scary.
Something happened that made you (or your character)angry.
Something happened that made you (or your character)happy.

Don't forget-- I am still looking for questions about the photo below. I can't upack my story until I get a question from everyone in the class.