What is it? Who are we? What is writing? Who is a writer? All these questions can create unrest in the hearts, hands, and minds of those that find, or do not find themselves to be creative in the first place. Those that are participating in the JustWrite program, whether it be from the confines of a correctional facility, the classroom of a University setting, the classroom of a charter high school, or in this “free” wide world – ALL participants were posed with the questions below:
- Do you consider yourself a writer, why or why not? If so, when did you realize you were a writer? If not, what about writing interests you?
- What kind of things do you write about?
- What interests you most about writing?
- What are your expectations of this workshop/project? What are you excited, nervous, confused, and or in the dark about?
- What would you most like to learn about poetry?
- What do you hope to learn about yourself?
- What do you think you will learn about others?
- How old are you? What is your ethnicity? What “Campus” are you participating in the JustWrite Program from?
Questionnaire Responses – UNM WIC Summer – CQ
- I would have to say that I am definitely not a writer. I used to write flows back in high school to kill time but I never did anything with them. I’m not exactly sure why I stopped, but there were many years after school was over where the party life was more important to me then anything else. I guess what interests me about writing is stuff like what we saw coming out of MDC. It amazes me how people could put all that emotion on paper and use it as an outlet.
- When I write now its always for a class. I dread having to write long papers because I know I have many deficiencies. I went to CAPS a few times and they were able to help me out but I still feel like I’m not a good writer. Back in the day when I wrote for fun it was all about street life.
- Definitely the thing that interests me most is listening or reading someones writing that knows what they are doing. Its a powerful thing that can grab you and take your imagination somewhere else. I love reading and hearing poetry much like the poetry we heard yesterday.
- I’m excited to help out the kids in some way. I’ve always believed that the youth are the future and we as a society should pay more attention to them. I’m a little nervous about speaking in front of the class because I haven’t taught an actual class in quite some time. Other than that I’m looking forward to facilitating the workshop.
- Honestly I would like to learn how to write better more than anything. I’ve been reading more lately and hoping that helps.
- Maybe I can learn some writing skills that will help me throughout my last year of college and also help me to keep writing out in the real world.
- Judging from our first class I think I’m gonna learn that some of the best writers are not here at UNM but locked up.
- I am 31 years old, Chicano, participating from UNM Main.
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community Summer – JC
- No I do not consider myself a writer. What interests me about writing is the openness to express how you feel in any way that you like. It can open your mind up.
- I would write about past events, stories that come to mind, and just how I am feeling at that moment in time.
I would say the opening of my mind to put what is going on up there onto paper.
- I am excited to experience something new and learn things from a new perspective.
- How to put words together in an eloquent way along with expressing feelings through poetry.
- I hope to learn that there is a creative side to myself.
- The way that they think and maybe get an insight of how they express the way they feel through poetry and other writing excercises
- I am 21 years old. I am Hispanic.
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community Summer – TR
- In some ways, I suppose I’ve considered myself a writer for most of my life. I started composing little poems in my head as a small child and by second grade, I was writing my first poems in a red spiral notebook. Sometimes I think it’s easy to find the thing you were meant to do; some people are born singers, or athletes, or caregivers. I was just always in love with words.
- As a poet, I’m very interested in images. I write from the perspective of noticing small things and trying to present them in a way that others are able to understand. I’ve more or less always written this way. My short stories are quite different in tone and style. I like to write extremely short stories about unlikeable characters.
- Writing is fascinating for many reasons, but I believe that it’s transformative properties are perhaps the most astounding. Writing can change a person by giving them a place where they are completely in control and is something that can’t be taken away.
- I’m expecting that this project with be a great learning experience. I’m nervous that my ideas may not be well received, but I’m excited to share the experience of writing with new people.
- I would very much like to learn about poetry that is less image based because it is never a bad thing to be outside of your comfort zone.
- I hope to discover whether my passion for writing will make any impact upon anyone else.
- I think that in sharing this experience and in sharing writing, there is so much that can be learned about others. Writing allows the worlds within a mind to become reality and is always keen to offer new perspectives.
- I am 20 years old, though I feel much older. I can’t really relate with any specific ethnicity because I am in the position of being a part of the mainstream white culture, though I’m often told I look like my Scottish grandmother. I am participating in the JustWrite Program from UNM
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community Summer – EAP
- I do consider myself as a writer because I like to write a lot poetry in Spanish.
- I realized in my Spanish class of the dictatorships in the arts
- What kind of things do you write about? I like to write about how we go through in life
- I am a little confused about the program but hopefully to learn more about it.
- I want to learn how to write better and improve it
- I want to learn that I can write
- That people know that I know how to write
- 21Mexican-American University of New Mexico
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community – CM
- I do not consider myself a writer, I have struggled in the last few years back in college working through classes that require writing papers. I think that I like to write about personal experiences and connect them through the subject or prompt.
- I don’t usually write, I have kept diaries before and usually unless they are required for a course I do not continue with the journal for more than maybe 2 weeks.
- I love to read, and I love when someone can write and it feels like they are speaking specifically to me. I think that when the writer can engage with me I am able to read more easily.
- I hope to become a better writer. I am most excited about working within the community and I am very nervous about sharing my writings and public speaking.
- I would like to learn to write about my feelings and experiences through writing.
- I would like to learn about my culture and family traditions.
- I hope to learn a lot from others, someone always knows something that I don’t know. I am excited to hear about others stories and experiences both through an educational perspective and life experiences.
- I am 31 years old, I am Mexican-American/Chicana and am currently at UNM main campus.
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community – MF
- I consider myself a writer with a serious case of writer’s block. I used to write about how I was feeling at a particular time, or about a certain situation in my life when I was in middle/ high school. Unfortunately, as I grew older and busier with collage, working, and other things, I just put it off and almost lost my muse.
- I use writing to express myself, and a current state of mind. It is hard to start something, get interrupted, and go back to finish it, because that moment has passed. So I guess expressive journals.
- The way that you can use language to paint a verbal picture for yourself (or others) and how getting things out on paper can be truly cathartic for the soul.
- I am nervous, because I have never done anything like this. Writing has always been something that was always very personal, and none of my friends (except for one) really got that. I am excited to share the power of the written word, so that it may help them in their journey in life.
- The different styles that are out there, and how I can use them in my future works.
- Honestly, how to reconnect back to myself, and learn to push my own creative envelope. I want that creative voice in my head back, so that I can figure out who I truly am, what I want, and where I am going in life.
- Their fears, desires, and history. Everyone has a past that never leaves them, and they shape that person in more ways than are obvious to the naked eye.
- am 26 years old. I have a hard time answering the ethnicity question, but I am Italian, Honduran, and white mix (European mix). I entered the class through the Spanish Topics courses via Main campus, although I am nowhere near fluent in Spanish, but I can try. I am in the college of Nursing and Arts and Sciences (Psych and Spanish).
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community Summer – CA
- I consider myself a writer in many ways. The daily activities had in my life require articulation of thought through writing, but the appreciation of literature has allowed me to hone diction to a degree. I guess, I would have considered myself a writer when I began journaling my thoughts to gain understanding of my issues.
- There are several ways in which I choose to write. Other than a journal, there is short stories. The stories are iterations that pertain to my past.
- Some of the most interesting things writing are its ability to make one emote and imagine. These emotions can be varied, and that is a wonderful thing about arranging words.
- I expect to better my ability to critically think and write in a progressive. This course is out of my convention.
- The different methods of approaching writing poetry, and using those systems to teach others.
- Learning if there is a capacity to achieve the requirements of the course are there. I’m certain I do, but the exciting part of different experience is the uncertainty.
- I expect to learn more of the different types of personalities and demographics in my neighboring communities.
- I am 24 years old first generation American, and hail from the land of Anderson School of Management. My ethnicity is Mexican.
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community Summer – ADL
- I would not consider myself a writer due to all my all my grammar and spelling errors due to my dyslexia but I have always enjoyed creating stories. I do not have a problem with writing it’s just everyone else has a problem with my writing because it’s not grammatically correct or they cannot read my writing but I understand it and enjoy writing ever since I was a little girl.
- When I was little I would make fiction stories and recreate children stories like Cinderella. When I got older I enjoyed writing about my life and my environment that I live in. I have wanted to start a diary or journal about my everyday life but I have not found the encouragement and time to accomplish this goal.
- Writing interest me because it is a way to get ones thoughts, beliefs, and emotions on paper and then once it is created it am alive for ever then people in the future can look back on the writing and can have an idea of what life was like during this time. I believe that without writing we would not have history because peoples writing are how we understand the past.
- I am very excited for this workshop/ project because I have ever took a class like this before and I love working with the community and getting people involved in a cause. I have been working in the community since I was 16 and I feel like this class was meant for me. I am happy to take this class and feel it is worth the $700 I had to pay because I feel like ill enjoy this class and learn about stuff I want to learn about.
- I would like to learn to write a well for mated poem because I can rhyme and put meaning to it but I know there I a format that I do know how to do.
- I would like to learn how much I am a good writer because people have discouraged me so much I gave up on writing but would like to find myself esteem and writing down all these emotions and thoughts that are just burning in my head.
- I think I will learn about their thoughts, personality, and their stories of their lives and environments.
- I am 22 years old, I am Hispanic but I like to say I am mestesa which is Mexican, white, and native American. I am at the Main UNM campus.
Questionnaire Responses – Writers In The Community Summer 2013 – GM
- I don’t know if I would call myself a writer but I do in fact write from time to time. I think writing didn’t come natural to me as a kid because of my Dyslexia so I never really liked writing until now. I write more now because I write for myself rather than for school.
- I am and always have been obsessed with cars so about a year and a half ago I started writing a book about my love for cars and how people develop relationships with their cars. If I’m not writing about cars I would say I am writing about what I want from life.
- What interest me most about writing would be using it as other creative tool. I draw, paint, build and take pictures as a way of nurturing my creative side. Writing hasn’t always been in my creative toolbox but this class has made me much more interested in writing regularly.
- Having worked with the workshop before I have a pretty good sense of what the class is going to be like. Im excited to learn new techniques in writing and working with a new group of people.
- I would like to learn how to get started. Sometimes the hardest thing for me is just getting my thoughts together and starting to write. Once I am well into writing it just comes out but getting started has always been my biggest barrier to writing.
- I hope to learn new ways to make writing easier for me. My whole life writing has been difficult but with poetry I just write for myself. Nobody needs to see my spelling and grammar so it makes it much easier for me to get thoughts out on paper. I hope to find new sources of inspiration.
- I hope to learn from other peoples prospectives. All of us come from different backgrounds which will inherently show in our writings. I think I will learn just form hearing other peoples thoughts based on the same prompts that I write from.
- I am about to turn 26 on the 26th of this month. I am Irish, German, Spanish and Italian so I draw from several different ethnic backgrounds. I am a student at The University of New Mexico.