Here is a cool info graphic on transitional phrases if you’re having troubles!
By: Elizabeth Busekrus
“For sale: baby shoes, never worn.” –Ernest Hemingway
This sentence, albeit six words, implicates a story, imprints an image in the mind of what never was, and describes a scene of loss. For those who have read Hemingway, they know of his minimalistic ways of telling a story. He incorporates his journalistic talents into storytelling, a direct, no-fluff style based as much on assumption as on explicitness. As I read the story above, I wonder about the baby who never wore the shoes, of what happened to him or her, and of how long it has been since the baby passed.
Six words do not speak of the whole story but invoke the possibilities of what could be, leaving the reader thinking. From now until the end of September, Missouri Baptist University (MBU) campus will be abounding with these six-word stories. The MBU Writing Lab is hosting the third annual six-word story contest. For this contest, participants write a story in six words; the story can be in whatever format the writer desires. Posting these stories can be done via Twitter or a paper slip in the Writing Lab.
To differentiate the contest this year from previous years, we decided to use Twitter as the main platform. The Writing Lab’s Twitter account will hopefully reach a greater span of individuals and will be a more interactive format. In previous years, the entries were submitted to the Writing Lab without others seeing the entries. Viewing them on Twitter can inspire others to think of their own six-word stories and create more community across the campus.
My question for you is, why should you write a six-word story for the Writing Lab this year?
1)To win a $25 Perk gift card
College, for me, brought me into the world of coffee. Coffee from the Perk helped me function in my everyday life. Besides coffee, the Perk also sells a multitude of food products. For those who would disagree about this need to have caffeine for survival, you can purchase a variety of other items. Who wouldn’t want to have free food and drink from the Perk? The winner of this contest will receive a $25 Perk gift card and will be announced the first week of October.
2) To tell a story that shows your creative expertise and leaves the reader imagining
What message do you want to convey? What is your story? Freewrite for a few minutes, giving background about your story. This background information does not need to be included in the story but will provide some understanding of what you want to imply in your story. Similar to Hemingway, carefully consider word choice and punctuation. Hemingway focuses on the words “baby shoes.” Using a colon after “for sale,” Hemingway emphasizes what exactly is for sale, and the comma denotes a characteristic of the baby shoes, in that they were never worn. Based on your freewriting, choose six key words which convey your story.
3) To provide more community at Missouri Baptist University and more perspective on varying topics
Since the contest takes place via Twitter, the platform allows students to retweet their stories so that more can view them. This networking increases the sense of community at MBU, fostering conversations on particular topics and varying worldviews. The contest encourages interactions among MBU students on the Writing Lab Twitter page. It can give you, as an MBU student, the opportunity to share your voice, thoughts, and story.
Is it possible to write a story in only six words? Let’s put that question to the test! If you are interested in showing off your creativity, submit to this contest. Contact Elizabeth Busekrus at firstname.lastname@example.org or (314) 744-7629 for additional information.
Being a tutor in the writing lab is a lot more rewarding than you would think. As a tutor, I enjoy seeing the personal growth in each session that I have with my students. These are some of the things that your tutor wants you to know.
I hope you keep all these things in mind the next time you meet with your writing lab coach. We are more than just tutors.
By: Kelsey Mundle
Use the video below as a guide for how to write a description essay or how to write a descriptive example within an essay.
Learn about how to apply commas to actual writing.
Learn about the 8 different uses of a comma with this video resource.
By: Ryan Rerich
Sitting at my 8 a.m. shift, I ponder what brings one to write. What drives me to write? Students each and every day across the world in a scholarly setting struggle with the passion and the drive to put the pencil to paper and express their thoughts. One can find it easy to talk and communicate to others about a topic, but when pressured to meet a deadline or word requirement, the battle between their brain and the keys on the keyboard occur.
I find that the easiest topics to write about are the ones that the writer can connect with and feel a deep relationship with. Winning a game with your teammates and still being able to relive the moment years later in your head makes for a powerful story. When an individual is able to “feel” the story, the writer and the reader will benefit. Even in structured essays or argumentative or research oriented papers, one can still find an issue they are passionate about. The topic that you could see you and your best friend arguing about may not be a bad choice. Really any topic that sparks a deep emotion would be one that would be worthy of choice.
Writing is a skill developed through practice. It is like anything in life. It takes time to learn and develop the craft, and writing will never be perfect. After writing multiple stories, articles, and such, one will notice a trend in their writing and begin to notice a “voice” in their piece. The voice of the writer will begin to show to all who read, and the drive to write might just be furthered once the individual understands the true joys of words on paper.
Write a review for a product you purchased from Amazon or another online company. Look at your use of adjectives and adverbs. What other adjectives/adverbs could you use to “spice it up?”
Write out a sample phone conversation that you might have with a friend. Look at your use of conjunctions and interjections in this conversation.