Apr 20, 2010

How to Freewrite - wikiHow

Almost two years have passed since I started to write in English, and I was able to feel the progress and changes of my writing lately. Mr. Sakai often asks me how I made such a rapid change and I gave him three reasons on the teacher's ML, free writing, experiences at volunteer translation group and the real exchanges on my blog and other forums.

When I started to write in English, my writing was quite rigid, it took me some time to produce even two or three sentences, and my way of writing was totally different from the way when I write in Japanese. It was like I'm constructing a building, putting together some parts of English phrases and making one correct sentence following the rules of grammar. You can anyhow finish a building which you can live in, but most of the cases, the completed buildings show no unity as a whole. One room is classic, the other quite stylish.

I'm not a good writer in Japanese, so it won't be an easy task to write in English still, but I'm really content with the result of my challenge up until now and I'd like you to experience the same joy of writing. So, in case you're curious about free writing, follow the link and you'll get a grasp of it. I myself haven't exercised this method, but the spirit itself is definitely an eye-opening and what lacks the most for English teachers and learners in Japan.
How to Freewrite - wikiHow


Whiskers said...

Tada! It's me again.
I'm having a relaxing free morning thanks to(?) the night class I teach. And how lucky I am to find your new article.

Yeah, your writing dramatically changed, I think, and I have always wondered how you did it. I remember you wrote about that in the past, but probably I wasn't paying enough attention.

For myself writing is the hardest part and I've never been confident about it. One of the reasons is probably I'm a teacher and unconciously or conciously I'm feeling I have to write 'grammatically correct' sentences. And I don't have my own style. When I read the exchanges between you and Mr. Sakai on off-meeting board--I never have a chance to join off-meetings but sometimes I just check posts there out--about writing and found even Mr. Sakai hasn't been confident about it, I was very much relieved.

So I visited the recommended website and read it. I once tried free-writing and even Lang-8, both of which didn't work for me...
It's spring and a good time to start or restart something and I'll try free-writing again with a timer!

Thanks a million!

chico said...

emmie, you got me in the zone. I realized that freewriting is not for everyone to enjoy. Somehow it worked for me brilliantly and I always feel so liberating to feel the words flowing out of me like a magma bubbling underneath of the earth. When all rules are taken out, your words, that has been oppreseed deep inside of your heart, the core of yourself, can finally got enounous wings to fly in the vast sky so freely, so joyfully or something. You know what I mean. It meant to be playful and never be serious. That has been mystery for me how I/ we chain myself/ ourselves with all the rules that my/ our imperfect mind has made. Well, of course, to a certain degree, you've got to have rules to mingle others. That's what it was made for in the first place. Don't you think? We created some rules for better mutual understanding but somehow those rules start to rule our mind. What an irony, eh? In a way, I think freewriting give us back the freedom of telling the truthful emotion which no rules can strangle. I don't wanna be an anarchist or anything but I wanna let all the conventiopnal belief go once and construct my own rules again. The rules must be something peaceful and something joyful and something friendly to the others.
I'm not fully sure why but lately I enjoy mingling with others. which is quite bizarre phenomenon since I've been a quite loner. Actually I've fought to be alone. hahaha i guess I've already had my place to be totally alone so that I don't have to worry about to keep my private free time. Instead, I long for some company to share my thoughts and ideas.
Ooops. It is about time to turn off my blubbering mind.Otherwise, it will go on all day long.

I guess you have realized by now that freewrting is effective and meaningful for the ones who feel stucked in an old grammar book but for who have already had the moment of breakthrough, it is rather meaningless or even risky for one might have had a wrong idea that she/ he may have some kind of an extraordinary talent for writing or something. It is not, unfortunately, true. Everyone can do this once you let yourself go regardless any rules. But writing brilliantly is totalyy another issue. I think that's what everyone must be told first. I just don't wanna give anyone any sky-high hope caz I know the massive disappointment when you realize that you are not anything speacial. Well, I get to the point where I don't really care whether I have some amazing talent or not as long as I'm happy. And I'm quite happy for what I have. But It took me quite a long time to get to this point. I felt like a lost kid walking in a long long dark tunnel alone. That was not pleasuable at all.
So here is what I really recommend. Expect nothing but let yourself go.
sorr it sounds corny as hell but what I can say...as I told you, I'm not an brilliant writer. I'm a happy scribbler and have no complaints about that!!


Mrs. Malone said...

Hello Guys!

Both of you always leave such long comments, so I've got to spare certain amount of time to make a proper reply. ha ha

I do think Mr.Sakai's story could be a huge relief for English teachers in Japan and sounds really promising, but when I told him about that, he was not aware of it. haha

It seems writing grammatically correct sentences is the ultimate goal at school, but once you read lots of English materials and listen to natural English a lot, then you'll come to understand how weird it could sound if you write sentences only by following grammatical rules.

As I have to exchange many mails with some members at a hobby group I belong to in English, I've given up writing good English, I simply don't have time to do. I kept writing in more relaxed mood, then I started to write longer sentences easily. My writing is not something, but it never caused any misunderstandings or troubles. This fact is what I really needed, neither correctness nor quality.

Hey, Chico, you call yourself a loner... ha! But I'm sure you're missing the pleasant time with Tadokist now. The tadoku board stopped giving me eye-opening ideas, so I do want to meet and talk with especially new members to Tadoku.

I didn't think free-writing is not for everybody, but I wonder if there is any other way to let people free themselves and enjoy the English writing...

See you maybe after the golden week!