Before you panic, know this: you only have to read one of these essays.
In fact, you could conceivably read none of these essays, assuming that you find an essay elsewhere that intrigues you. Still, these essays are so good that you might want to read them all.
- Attitude by Margaret Atwood
- Where Do You Get Your Ideas by Neil Gaiman
- You Can Do It, Baby! by Leslie Garrett
- The Most Amazing Bowling Story Ever by Michael J. Mooney
- How Headphones Changed the World by Matthew Hickey
- Excerpts from Friday Night Lights by Buzz Bissinger
What will you do with the essay you choose? Well, let’s return to our trusty 6 questions. Yes, that’s right: 6 questions. We’ve added a new one.
1. How does this text work? (conventions, techniques)
2. Who is it for? (audience)
3. Why was it created? (purpose and intent)
4. How does voice impact my understanding of the text?
5. What intended and unintended value messages does it contain?
6. How can I apply the criteria above to my own work?
Remember, ladies and gents, that some questions apply to specific texts more than others. Our purpose as readers also determines the relevance of these questions. Today, two questions are particularly important: How does voice impact my understanding of the text? and How can I apply the criteria above to my own work? Answering these two questions will help you better understand your own voice and the ways in which you might choose to express it.