Archive for December, 2013

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Writers’ Writing Advice

Posted: December 22, 2013 in Writing Advice

Writers' Writing Advice

Keeps me motivated!

Thought Catalog

Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words. Mark Twain
I only achieve simplicity with enormous effort. Clarice Lispector
A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction. Virginia Woolf
I’ve put in so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep the professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant, and that’s the only way of insuring one’s immortality. James Joyce
The first draft of anything is shit. Ernest Hemingway
Always be a poet, even in prose. Charles Baudelaire
Literature — creative literature — unconcerned with sex, is inconceivable. Gertrude Stein
If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has no use for it. Anaïs Nin
One can be absolutely truthful and sincere even though admittedly the…

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ODK

Membership in Omicron Delta Kappa is as much an obligation and responsibility in leadership as it is a mark of highest distinction and honor. Membership is awarded to undergraduate junior and senior students; to graduate students; to faculty, staff, administration, and alumni; and to persons qualifying for membership “honoris causa.” Student membership candidates must rank in the upper 35 percent of their school or college and must show leadership in at least one of the five phases of campus life.

  • Scholarship
  • Athletics
  • Campus or Community Service, Social or Religious Activities and Campus Government
  • Journalism, Speech and the Mass Media
  • Creative and Performing Arts

signing

cake

cake2

shake

Original Cover Letter Draft

The accompanying vita is to introduce myself as a candidate for the [SCHOOL NAME] school psychology internship.

I am currently a graduate student at [SCHOOL NAME] in the School Psychology program. [SCHOOL NAME] interests me as a place of internship because I seek to gain experience functioning as a change agent for students, teachers, families and systems. At [SCHOOL NAME], the purpose of an internship in school psychology is to provide students with the opportunity to participate in a full range of psychological services in an educational setting. Upon completion of the internship (minimum of 1200 hours), it is expected that students will possess entry-level skills to begin employment as school psychologists. Field supervisors are expected to provide two hours per week of direct supervision as well as on-going feedback regarding the intern’s written reports, specific skills and interpersonal competencies.

As you will see from my curriculum vita, I have gotten a breadth of relevant experiences over the past three years including working at the elementary, middle, and high school levels with ethnically and economically diverse children and families. In addition to numerous other activities, main areas of focus during my practicum year have been implementing a behavioral intervention within a classroom using the consultation model (e.g. entry and contracting, problem identification and analysis, intervention design, implementation, etc.) while also utilizing motivational interviewing strategies; and counseling a student using evidence-based approaches (e.g. solution-focused brief therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy). In addition, I have been responsible for collecting assessment data, implementing behavioral interventions, and monitoring student outcomes throughout the year.

I am interested in an internship within [SCHOOL NAME] because I believe my graduate training, field and related experiences, and skills have directly influenced my ability to work in the best interest of students. Through creative problem solving, critical thinking skills and innovation, I seek to personalize learning that meets students’ at their needs. Since graduating from my undergraduate institution, I have worked alongside children and adolescents by assisting in their growth to success and accumulated valuable knowledge along the way. Particular areas of interest for me are multicultural issues including social advocacy for underserved or marginalized students and families. As a student intern for a District Court Judge, whom presided primarily in juvenile court, hearing trials and motions involving custodial cases of the Department of Social Services – Youth and Family Services Division and delinquency cases, I witnessed numerous cases involving an adolescent who made one bad decision which affected/altered the trajectory of the rest of his life. From this point forward, I knew I wanted to dedicate my life to intervening within children and adolescents’ lives in order to provide them with better services/options to further their success. I also would like to gain additional experience with crisis intervention teams.

I firmly believe in [SCHOOL NAME’S] vision to inspire and empower every student to learn and excel. I not only wish to be a part of this vision but I also desire to contribute my strengths and skills to your learning community.

Upon review of my vita, you will find that I have extensive experience counseling/working with diverse populations, a demonstrated ability to collaborate amongst/alongside a team (of individuals), outstanding interpersonal and customer service skills, and a willingness to learn more about new concepts and strategies that can aide my growth as a school psychologist.

The enclosed resume will furnish additional information on my background. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Revised Cover Letter

I am currently a graduate student at [SCHOOL NAME] in the School Psychology program interested in the [SCHOOL NAME] for a school psychology internship. I seek to gain experience serving on crisis intervention teams, and I wish to be a change agent for students, teachers, and families. I firmly believe in the [SCHOOL NAME] vision to inspire and empower every student to learn and excel. I not only wish to be a part of this vision, but I also desire to contribute my strengths and skills to your learning community.

As you will see from my accompanying curriculum vita, I am a qualified candidate with extensive experiences counseling diverse populations, a demonstrated ability to collaborate alongside a team, outstanding interpersonal and customer service skills, and a willingness to gain new concepts and strategies that can aide my growth as a school psychologist.

My breadth of relevant experiences over the past three years comes from working at the elementary, middle, and high school levels with ethic and economic diversities. Having been a student intern for a district court judge, a particular area of interest for me is social advocacy for underserved or marginalized students and families. I witnessed numerous cases involving adolescents who made one bad decision that affected his or her life trajectory. From that point forward, I dedicated my life to intervening in children’s lives to provide them with better options and services, and a school psychology internship in the [SCHOOL NAME] will help me accomplish my personal and professional goals.

To achieve this end, my practicum at [SCHOOL NAME] has allowed me to implement a classroom behavioral intervention using the consultation model (e.g. entry and contracting, problem identification and analysis, intervention design, implementation, etc.), motivational interviewing strategies, and counseling using evidence-based approaches (e.g. solution-focused brief therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy). Additionally throughout the year, I have been responsible for collecting assessment data, implementing behavioral interventions, and monitoring student outcomes.

If you are willing to serve as a field instructor, you would provide two hours per week of direct supervision as well as on-going feedback regarding my written reports, specific skills, and interpersonal competencies.  A minimum of 1200 hours is necessary to complete the internship, and this time will provide me with entry-level skills when seeking employment.

Original Text at Persian-Cats.com

Revised Text

Ethical Breeding Steps for Fun and Success

Cat breeding is an expensive, time-consuming hobby.
Here is an easy five-step formula for becoming an ethical and respected breeder in the Fancy without facing heartaches and making mistakes.

Step 1—Gaining Knowledge

A good breeder needs a firm goal that is specific towards the betterment of the bread in some way. To create a measurable goal, you need a strong education in breed standards, health, look and temperament, and genetics. Get ready to do some research in these areas.

Gain knowledge about the breed standard

  • Find a breed standard on a major cat registry website or correspond with a current cat breeder
  • Attend a show hall to see winning cats in action and find a breed that suits your taste
  • Do not attempt to change the breed standard as it is a long and difficult process for an experienced breeder.

Gain knowledge about the breed’s health

  • Be ethical. Know how to keep your cats healthy throughout their lifespan.
  • Other breeders can be a great resource to ask how to avoid health issues and eliminate them from your breeding lines.
  • Consult books or the internet about the breed’s health.

Gain knowledge about the breed’s look

  • Decide on a color division. Not all breed’s color mixes are allow for showing.
  • Learn about the breed’s aesthetic faults and disqualifications.
  • Determine a winning look for the breed you wish to show. Have an objective for the qualities you wish to emphasize on the show floor.

Gain knowledge in genetics and feline husbandry

  • Genetics can help you predict if the cats you breed together will produce the dream kittens you wish to produce.
  • Genetics can help you avoid inbreeding and free your line from health problems.
  • Feline husbandry can help keep your cats healthy and happy.

Step 2—Build a breeding program

  • Think of the number of cats you want and can have in your program
  • Consider how the cats you choose will be bread in the most effective way to reach your goal.
  • Write down the colors of your cats, their type, aspired lines, and pedigree for future reference.

Step 3—Prepare your home/cattery

  • Purchase pet supplies.
  • Create a comfortable space for your cats to sleep, play, and eat before purchasing.

Step 4—Purchase your cats

  • Do not compromise. Get the best cats to reach your goal. If needed, wait to buy the right pair of cats.

Step 5—Spay/Neuter

  • Showing a neutered cat
    • Looking at cats without buying one during the research process can be frustrating, and one must be extremely disciplined.
    • A neutered show cat might be a temporary and less costly alternative. Having a neutered show cat will enable you to visit many shows, develop a reputation, and get a head start on show grooming.
    • For such a cheap option, you will get to know many cats and people who will be sources for knowledge.
  • Spay/neuter cats that deteriorate the breed
    • Ethical policy that ensures the health and welfare of cats
    • Selling a neutered cat may motivate others to show a breed
    • Inspires respect from other breeders

Revision Rationale

Publishing for the web means taking an essay or article and making it appeal to the visual senses. This document was long, confusing, and disjointed. Instead of being informative, the writing style gave off an opinionated tone. My revisions focused on the visual elements of the writing by using bullet points and bolding the steps. I reduced the number of steps because I wanted the article to focus around a central bottom-line message: ethical breeding steps for fun and success. The author seemed overly focused on creating a 10-step plan, which over-complicates the process; thus, the reader becomes overwhelmed and is unwilling to take on a breeding program.

The revisions emphasize the research that goes into a breeding program by dividing categories of the process into sub-sections. The bullet points for Step 1 clearly identify the objectives a future cat breeder should keep in mind when exploring his or her options. The remainder of the article did not receive subsections because the points made were mainly more generalized reminders versus detailed how-to steps.

Original Letter of Appeal

It is because of community supporters like yourself that the Dedi Sykes Education Endowment continues to provide educational opportunities to York VNA Home Care nurses and clinical staff. The endowment is in memory of my mother, Dedi Sykes, a lifelong champion of the VNA. My family and I see my mother’s memory live on through the amazing work of the entire VNA staff.

Last year the endowment was able to fund a grant to Leslie Nelson. Leslie will be finishing up her Wound Care Certification this coming October.

“This has provided me with the confidence in providing wound assessment and care to patients with acute and chronic wounds. This knowledge will able me to provide the easiest, most effective, and medically appropriate care for a win-win of the patient and the VNA,” explains Leslie.

Leslie mentioned the win-win for patients and the VNA. The Dedi Sykes Education Endowment hopes to continue to foster win-win situations by providing opportunities of growth and knowledge to the VNA staff. I am excited to announce that this year we will be able to award two grants from the endowment. The first grant will be used by a nurse who is attending a Wound and Skin Management Course and the other will be used by a nurse who is taking two online courses towards her Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

Thank you for your past support of the Dedi Sykes Education Endowment. I hope you will consider making another gift to the endowment to help VNA clinical staff and nurses continue to give outstanding care to their patients. To make your gift, please send your check in the enclosed envelope.  Checks can be made payable to the Dedi Sykes Education Endowment. You can also make a donation via credit card by completing the enclosed credit card form.

My mother would be proud of the support you and other community members have given this endowment. She was always a supporter of the work of the VNA staff, and it means a lot to my family that this support continues in her honor.

Revised Letter of Appeal

The Dedi Sykes Education Endowment is in memory of my mother, Dedi Sykes, a lifelong champion of the VNA. My mother would be proud of the support you and other community members have given this endowment, which allows the excellent VNA staff a chance to expand their knowledge base.

My family and I see my mother’s memory live on through the amazing work of the entire VNA staff, and it means a lot to us you’re your support continues in her honor. The York VNA Home Care nurses and clinical staff members also appreciate your support of their educational and professional development opportunities.

Last year we were able to provide three scholarships. Kimberly Yinger received a scholarship for a Chronic Care Professional (CCP) Certification, and Betty Anne Abrahamsen received funding for a course in Lymphedema Therapy. Steph Emenheiser received funding for books used in courses required for a BSN.

Steph says, “Having my BSN will open new opportunities for furthering education and I hope to specifically have the skills to help the under-educated and financially impaired population of York County.”

Steph’s story is only one of those helped by the Dedi Sykes Education Endowment. Your donation can continue to provide this valuable education opportunity. Doing so will help VNA clinical staff and nurses continue to give outstanding care to their patients.

To make your gift, please send your check in the enclosed envelope.  Checks can be made payable to the Dedi Sykes Education Endowment. You can also make a donation via credit card by completing the enclosed credit card form.

Thank you for your consideration.

Original Text from Stansberry Research

Revised Text

Writingsample

Deal with Disaster. Cope with Crisis. Come out a Success.

Crisis is inevitable. We clean up hurricanes, floods, fires, and earthquakes because we cannot stop them. Terrorist attacks, government shutdowns, public shootings, and health epidemics are all beyond our control.

These disasters are bound to happen, do happen, and will continue to happen. But don’t just throw your hands up in the air in apathy and dejection. Instead, consider Benjamin Franklin’s advice.

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”

As Americans, we’ve faced extreme disasters over the last 15 years.

Hurricane Katrina               Boston Marathon bombings         Hurricane Sandy
Aurora shooting                  Newton shooting                 Columbine shooting
The 9/11 attacks       2008 Great Recession                    2013 Government Shutdown      

We’ve endured great stress and strain on our emotions, finances, and well-being. This pressure causes “negative panic.” We lose the ability to make rational decisions. We are unable to leave a detrimental situation because we don’t know how to cope. We are stuck in panic mode and cannot escape.

To overcome our fears, we must, as Dr. David Eifrig, Jr. advises in The Doctor’s Protocol Field Manual, “Plan the Trade; then Trade the Plan.”

Dr. David Eifrig, Jr., retired doctor and former Wall Street banker, offers a reassuring outlook that sees past America’s problems. The Doctor’s Protocol Field Manual examines natural disasters, national events, financial decisions, and medical emergencies to create a sure-fire, clear-cut way to resolve any crisis. Convoluted misinformation will not be found in this book…only memorable categories.

Design, Provision, Shield, and Prosper.

These provisions in The Doctor’s Protocol Field Manual–not anyone or anything else–will come to your aid when disaster strikes.

Ready yourself for when the worse happens.

Plummeting stocks             Unexpected decline in savings                  Unforeseen bills
Expensive healthcare costs                                    The common cold & the flu          
Identity Theft                                   Property damage                             Robbery & burglary

The Doctor’s Protocol Field Manual guides you through these major and minor life events by:

  • Preparing you to be proactive to ensure their safety and security.
  • Preparing you for major and minor disruptions.
  • Preparing you to aid yourself in a disaster.
  • Returns your life to a state of normalcy.
  • Restores order with a simple, scientific method

The Doctor’s Protocol Field Manual contains more than 100 pages of crucial life-saving information. For $25 off the regular price with free shipping included, this book only costs $4.95. Buy it now to find out important ideas, techniques, strategies, and secrets that can make you safer, happier, healthier, and more secure.

WCCP: Demographics 

Age

Experience

Gender

Training

Major/Minor

Graduation

21

5

Female

No

Biology/Spanish

Spring 2014

21

5

Female

Yes

Mathematics

Spring 2014

22

7

Female

Yes

Secondary English Education/Special Education

Spring 2015

21

3

Female

Yes

Communication Arts with Journalism & Public Relations Focus/ English and Marketing Management

Spring 2014

24

2

Female

Yes

Secondary English Education

Spring 2015

20

2

Female

Yes

Professional Writing

Spring 2015

21

2

Female

Yes

Secondary English Education

Fall 2014

21

2

Female

No

International Studies and Economics

Fall 2014

19

1

Female

Yes

Professional Writing/ Creative Writing and Music

Spring 2016

21

3

Female

No

Secondary English Education

Spring 2014

20

3

Female

No

Nursing

Spring 2015

22

2

Male

Yes

Professional Writing

Fall 2013

21

3

Female

No

Secondary English Education

Spring 2015

20

3

Female

No

Mass Communication with Public Relations and Advertising Focus

Spring 2014

21

3

Female

Yes

English and Film Studies

Spring 2014

Average:

21 years old

Mode:

3 semesters

Mode:
Female

5 no

10 yes

1st: Secondary Education English
2nd: Professional Writing/English

3rd Communication

Mode:

Spring 2014

 

Writing Consultants’ Future Career Plans Writing Consultants’ Future Graduate School Plans
7 teaching public school/college English or writing 3 professional writing or rhetoric & composition
4 international/public relations; non-profit event planning 2 college or public education
2 film criticism or publishing/editing
2 nursing or optometry

WCCP: Survey

REMINDER! Do not include your name on this survey. Do not answer any questions that make you feel uncomfortable. This survey will not affect your tutoring status in any way.

Today’s Date:

What is your age?

What is your gender?

When do you expect to graduate?

What are (were) your majors?

What career do you plan to pursue after graduation? If you plan to pursue graduate school, what will be your program of study and institution?

How many semesters or terms did you tutor at the Writing Center?

Did you take a credit-bearing tutor training course?  Yes      No

What other forms of tutor development did you participate in? (Please check all that apply.)

___ none

___ regular staff meetings

___ regional or national conferences

___ summer workshops

___ social events

___ other (please specify)

Reflections on Your Tutoring Experience (Open-ended)

  1. What are the most significant abilities, values, or skills that you developed in your work as a peer writing tutor? Please list them.
  2. Of the abilities, values, or skills that you listed above, would you illustrate those that strike you as most meaningful by sharing an episode or even that took place during your time as a tutor or a trainee?
  3. Do these abilities, values, or skills that you are developing as a peer tutor see to be a factor in your choice of job or graduate work? Would you elaborate?

Reflections on your Tutoring Qualities and Skills (Respond and Rate)

  1. Do the qualities gained from tutoring play a role in your interviewing process, in the hiring process, or in acceptance to graduate school? How did you come to that conclusion?
  2. Would you rate the importance of your training and/or experience as a tutor in the interviewing or hiring process for your first job?
5 4 3 2 1
Very important Not important
  1.  In your future occupation(s), will you use the qualities you developed as a writing tutor, if at all? Will you elaborate? Give an example?
  2. Would you rank the importance for your future occupation of the skills, qualities, or values you developed as a tutor?
5 4 3 2 1
Very important Not important
  1. What have learned from working with the writing of others? Please elaborate or provide an example.
  2. Would you rank the importance for your future occupation of the skills, qualities, or values you gained from working with others’ writing?
5 4 3 2 1
Very important Not important

Reflections on Your Tutoring Experience (Rate)

  1. Would you please rate the importance of your writing center/writing fellow training and experience as you developed as a university student?
5 4 3 2 1
Very important Not important
  1. Would you please rate the importance of your writing center/writing fellow training and experience as you developed as a future professional?
5 4 3 2 1
Very important Not important