Monday, June 6, 2011

My Writer's Report Card

Post by Jenny

Schools everywhere are sending kids off to summer break with a pat on the back and a report card in hand. I was a very grade-oriented student and wanted to get A’s whenever possible. Usually, I did. But it has been years since anyone gave me a report card, and I can’t help but wonder what kinds of grades I’d be pulling in these days. In keeping with the evaluative end-of-the-school-year spirit, I did a report card for myself.

I’ve broken up my writer’s life into the following courses:

English 101: A – My grammar, spelling, and composition are pretty good…at least by today’s standards.

Creative Writing: B- – I didn’t accomplish all of what I hoped to, but does anyone? (That’s a rhetorical question, so if you did, congratulations! But feel free to keep it smugly to yourself.)

Blogging: B – This is an average of two grades—an A for keeping up with my own blogging projects, and a C for visiting and commenting on other blogs.

NCW: B—I didn’t attend many classes or coffees, but I helped with a few studio events and the conference.

Querying: C- – This is also an average grade. I give myself an A- for first semester and a D- for second semester. (It should be an F, but I earned extra credit by cleaning chalkboard erasers...or whatever the equivalent is for smart boards.)

Social Media: C – I feel rather the same way about it as I did about algebra: it doesn’t come naturally to me, it takes up too much time, and am I ever going to use it in the “real world?” So I do just enough to get by.

Because a writer’s life is not only about writing, I’ve graded myself on these additional subjects:

Laundry: A – No one had to leave the house in paper-towel underwear, and that’s good enough for me.

Errands: C – My lack of efficiency cost me here. (Darn you, Target!)

Exercise: B – I’m pretty consistent about it. Except when I’m not.

General mothering: A- – I never sent my boys to school with Pop-Tarts for lunch (though they wouldn’t have complained), I helped with homework, I volunteered, I went on field trips, and I did, to the best of my ability, the hundred other little things moms do on a daily basis.

Wifery (How come midwifery is a word but wifery isn’t?): I guess my husband should grade me on this, but let me get him a bowl of ice cream first.

All in all, I passed, but there’s room for improvement. How did your writer’s report card turn out?


Kay Theodoratus said...

I think you accomplished more than I did. I've been coasting so far in 2011 so I've great big goose eggs to average in to last year's accomplishments.

Halli Gomez said...

Oh this is a scary thing to look at, but here goes:
English 101 - B+ because I can always improve

Creative Writing - A. I've had some awesome ideas lately!!

Blogging - B. I can't seem to keep up and post only once a week on my own blog. Maybe this should be a C.

Social Media - A. This is the one area I have no problem keeping up with. Darn you smart phone!

Non writing duties:
General mothering - A. I will let everything else go before I let this one get away. I have also attended field days, lunches, special classes, etc this month so the kids are pretty happy.

Laundry - D. Most of the laundry is done and put away, but I have to re-wash the towels AGAIN because I can't seem to get them from the washer to the dryer in a decent amount of time.

Errands - B. I'm a little late (pushing the deadline) on things like teacher gifts, but the end of the school year is not for another four days!

Looking at this I see where I can improve. But will I?

Jerry Eckert said...

How's about if I give you an A+ for candor. And an A for prioritizing. Kids first, let me repeat, "KIDS FIRST" and to Hell with the writing agenda. You nailed that one. As for me, I get an A+ for submissions (63 so far in 2011), a C- for new stuff put down on paper (only one new draft since January), and a D for growth in my understanding of process and technique since the first of the year.

Cookin'Cathy said...

Jenny, thanks for your forthrightness. Maybe now I can come out of the broom closet because I thought I was the only one in the whole world who wasn't living up to personal writing goals.

By the way, I loved your note about exercise consistency!!

Patricia Stoltey said...

The thought of facing a report card again after all these years was too depressing. I'm sure I got an A in napping, however.

Jenny said...

Kay, I read your blog and I beg to differ!

Halli, I can totally relate to your comments about towels and teacher gifts :-)

Thank you, Jerry. Great job with your submissions.

Cathy, I think every writer needs to spend a little time in the broom closet.

Pat, you definitely earned an A in social media and pre-veterinary feline care.

Lisa Vella said...

What a clever post! You definitely get an A for creativity! Have a wonderful week!

Jenny said...

Thank you, Lisa!

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