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What makes a good writer? [Jan. 25th, 2010|06:35 pm]
English Major Central

I'm teaching a basic composition course at a local university, and I thought I would have a lot of "repair work" to do on their writing.  I was pleasantly surprised at how good they already are...they just need a little polishing.

One of the things I wanted to do with them was presentations on grammar points, but that seems unnecessary now.  So, instead, I want to focus on qualities of good writing or of a good writer.

Keeping in mind that it's not a creative writing course, what do you think makes a good writer (or makes good writing)?

(cross-posted a few places, so I'm sorry if you see this a couple times)
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Ning Community for Teachers of Reading English and Language Arts [Jun. 6th, 2009|10:18 am]
English Major Central
I am beta testing a ning site (an online community of talented people who share a common interest) for teachers of Reading English and Language Arts. I'll be doing curriculum development in Ethiopia this summer and would like to reach a greater community of Reading Teachers. Will you join the community, suggest ideas, and share your own resources and RSS feeds? I'm especially interested in collecting RSS feeds for Reading and English teacher blogs so that we can collaborate.

x-posted to various teaching communities
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Don Quixote [Mar. 14th, 2009|09:47 pm]
English Major Central

I'm looking for a copy of Don Quixote for my own personal enjoyment, and while I've run across a fair number of different translations, I'm not sure which to get. I want something that's readable but still poignant, and I'm considering Edith Grossman's translation. I thought I would post the question to you all first, though.

Which translation do you recommend and why?
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The Time Machine: Illustrated Classic Edition [Jul. 23rd, 2008|10:40 pm]
English Major Central

[Current Mood |amusedamused]

When I was a child I got great enjoyment out of the 1983 Illustrated Classics Edition of The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. It was heavily abridged and the language was somewhat modernized, but it wasn't until several years later that I realized I hadn't been reading the real thing. Only last week, I finally got around to reading Wells' original, and enjoyed it immensely, but something seemed to be missing. I scrounged around for a while looking for my old Illustrated Classics copy (it turned out to be on my niece's bookshelf) and discovered that Shirley Bogart, who had performed the adaptation, had added a whole new chapter called "The Golden Age of Science" right before the Time Traveler's return to the 19th century.

The new chapter takes place in the 22nd century, in which technology has advanced considerably and the world has been reorganized by the World Science Governing Board, an idea that seems reasonably consistent with Wells' notions of social progress (although there's no mention of socialism). But one passage made me laugh aloud and confirmed that the chapter must have been an original creation by Bogart:

The first thing I noticed was four enormous portraits on the wall. They were all of people in white lab coats. In one, an Oriental woman was peering at a kind of chemical tube. In another, a black man sat by an elaborate microscope. In the third, a red-skinned woman was working was working with a tri-square and compass. And in the last, a white man stood in front of a blackboard covered with complicated symbols.

As a child, I didn't even pick up on the heavy-handed multiculturalism of this passage, but now it seems absurdly out of place in a story first published in 1895. Has anyone else had a similar experience with literary adaptations for children?

Cross-posted to english_major and english_majors. Sorry if this appears on your Friends page more than once.
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successful mfa novels? [Jun. 22nd, 2008|07:28 pm]
English Major Central
Hey kids,

I'm looking for names of successful novels that were written for thesis for mfa programs. Any in mind?

Thanks :)

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(no subject) [Jun. 16th, 2008|09:04 am]
English Major Central

Hello, if I remember correctly this is my first post here.
I am currently a freshman in college and I would like to work as a tutor during summer break in order to make some money.

However, and I don't have any experience that's why I am making this post. The guy I am going to tutor is a former classmate of mine and currently studying for the final examination in high school. (I'm from Austria.) He is having especially having problems when it comes to intonation and in his written English. Are there any websites that offer information about how to tutor a non-native speaker? And what do you do when you are tutoring someone?

Thanks a lot in advance.

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Teach English in Korea! [Apr. 8th, 2008|08:44 am]
English Major Central
A lot of English majors end up here so I thought I'd post this here:

Come spend your summer (and the next year) living by the beach and the mountains! Sokcho is a small sea side city with big things to offer. Living in Sokcho is a one of a kind experience!

Read on for more info!Collapse )
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Transferring classics courses to school without classics programs? [Mar. 25th, 2008|07:44 pm]
English Major Central

Hey all -

This is an odd question that only a few of you will be able to answer, but it's a diverse group, right?

I'm considering taking a distance class from UW in classical mythology, and using it to fulfill an English department requirement at OSU. Thing is, it's offered by UW's Classics department, so on the transfer transcript it would read something like CLAS 453. OSU doesn't have a Classics department, so university administrators may or may not be astute enough to understand it was a literature class. (The English department does, however, offer courses in classical mythology from time to time.)

Have any of you transferred Classics courses of this type (but that were offered by Classics departments) to OSU, any Oregon universities, or just a school that did not have a Classics program?

I have a couple of backup plans, so don't bother suggesting other options. Just answer the question. Thanks.
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(no subject) [Dec. 17th, 2007|11:22 pm]
English Major Central

So, just to throw this out there:

I'm currently finishing up my undergraduate work in English, and I want to be an English/Poetry Professor. So I guess I'm a prospective professor? ...

I'm planning on spending a year doing an MA in either Humanities or English, then on to a PhD!

I'd like the PhD program to focus on Creative Writing as well as Literature. I know there are plenty of Lit programs and some Creative Writing programs, but I think there are only a few that combine them. Any recommendations on programs and their reputations? Right now, USC (Trojans, not Gamecock..) looks pretty appealing.

Anyway, is this the right path to take to achieve that aforementioned goal of becoming a prof?

What else should I be doing to prepare? I graduate in about a year and a half. I'm going to take the GRE later this year, I've been published (barely, just one poem...) and I'm planning on submitting more to various lit mags...

What else is there to do? I have a sneaking suspicion that unlike college, the graduate admissions folks won't care that I play saxophone and do photography and social justice work.

Oh, and as far as grades go, my frosh/soph years were a bit low (I came in at a 3.5), but I'm doing much better now (3.9), so hopefully that's not detrimental. Is that detrimental?

Oh man. So many questions! Thanks a bouquet for your help!
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help needed [Nov. 17th, 2007|07:47 pm]
English Major Central

Hey :)
I am an English major here in Austria and I'm currently in my freshman year.
We recently started to interpret Shakespeare's sonnets in our Literature class.
There is only one problem: we have to use the OED in order to get the proper meaning for the words, the problem is that I can't access the online version of it here from my home computer.
I don't have the original copy so I can't use this one either.
my question is: do you know any other websites where I can get the (original)meanings for the words used in his sonnet? (sonnet 97 that is)

thanks in advance
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