11 August 2009

Why I left BYU-Idaho, changed my major, and spent the last six weeks in Europe

This post is brought to you by Sister Bernadette's Barking Dog by Kitty Burns Florey. I spent the last few hours devouring this fabulous read and in the last chapter came upon a passage that pretty much sums up the catalyst for my life the past year. It's a little bit lengthy (not too terribly) but I hope that you will enjoy the imagery and fabulous writing of Kitty Florey.

"Writing can be terrifying for students in those vulnerable and insecure...years. This wasn't true for me--I've been shamelessly willing to put my thought on paper at the drop of a pencil for as long as I can remember--but for my old sixth-grade friend Rosamond, a blank page was almost as intimidating as the after-school dances the nuns forced us to attend a year of so later, with Buddy Holly blaring tinnily from a portable record player, the boys milling around (staring at their shoes, hands in pockets, snickering) on one side of the room, and the girls (making small-talk, each one wondering miserably why she wore that horrible skirt that makes her look fat and must be the reason no one is dancing with her) on the other. Rosamond says that, for her, writing was just that ghastly: when "How I Spent My Summer Vacation"-time came around, her hands went clammy and her mind went blank.
(This paragraph is the clincher) But diagramming--that was another world. The only thing that mattered was whether a sentence was diagrammed correctly, and that could be demonstrated to everyone's satisfaction by means of a few intersecting lines. It was a game; it wasn't about you. There was no room for opinion. You weren't being judged on the contents of your soul or the quality of your imagination. You weren't writing drivel, you weren't failing to do justice to an idea that gripped you, you weren't afraid of being too fanciful or too dry or too simple-minded--all you needed was accuracy. Brilliant diagramming, unlike brilliant writing, was something that could be learned."

I am no writer but I love to read and I love the English Language. I will diagram to my heart's content and love every straight lined moment. This book was fabulous and, actually, her writing reminded me very much of Mater's blentry writing. I love it!

2 comments:

Laura said...

Well, I'm flattered. Have a safe trip home, Neesey! Love you!

Dana Home Academy said...

Can't wait to start reading it! Glad you are home safe and sound!