Many English teachers have attempted to improve my writing, but at the end of the day my writing was always just mediocre. I had absolutely no motivation to give more effort than I needed to. Moreover, I viewed writing as a waste of time and wanted to finish as fast as possible so that I could destroy my neighbors in video games or practice my jump shot. My negative attitude associated with writing halted any possibility of development. Furthermore, teachers and the education system made me cringe whenever a writing assignment was introduced to the class. The first teacher that successfully created any personal interest for me to develop my writing was my high school English teacher Ryan Miller. I would have never guessed that a difficult seven in the morning English class could affect me so drastically. Not only did I finish the class with an obvious improvement in my writing, but I also ...view middle of the document...
Mr. Miller responded to any student’s comment or question instantaneously as if it was a game to see how quickly he can think of an intelligent response. It dawned on me during the first large essay that I may never have a better English teacher.
To utilize all of my resources, I put more effort into this essay than I ever have on any essay in my life. The essay combined “Nature,” written by Emerson, and O Pioneers! written by Cather. The prompt addressed the connections individuals’ share with nature. In less than a few hours I completed a first draft. However, before junior year I would turn in my first draft as a completed assignment without re-reading, and would only correct grammar mistakes. I spent more than five hours re-reading and perfecting that first essay to ensure that I would not make a fool out of myself in front of him. Miller critiqued my draft heavily and guided me towards better essay writing. Later, I looked back and spent another few hours incorporating his corrections and double-checking that the paper flowed well. My heart stopped when the grades were released. B-. Questions raced through my head. I had no clue where I went wrong. I spent more than four times the time on this essay than a normal essay yet received a grade similar to when I put no effort in. A majority of people would bear this news as a sign that they are terrible at writing and would give up. At first I was furious, but instead used the B- as a wake up call, and worked harder on each consecutive paper.
My third year of high school is the beginning of my writing history, and my writing has only improved since then. My devotion to developing my writing was worth it once I received a grade of an A- on the final essay. Additionally Miller’s class also prepared me to write my personal statement and other college essays. I might not be where I am today if I had a different teacher that year or experienced a more negative mindset. I learned an enormous amount about my character and my personal view on certain subjects as I dived deeper into each essay topic. It is hard to believe that my enhanced life all started with that first essay.