Greetings from Cleopatra! This is a student archive site designated for Instructor Morgen’s “Play Make Write Think” ENG101 class in Emory University for Spring 2019. You are more than welcome to come and explore the clash of self identity and “games” through my writings presented. And please enjoy yourself!
More info about the class? Please visit: https://eng101s19.davidmorgen.org/
The writing process has always been depicted as standardized, audience-orientated, and quantifiable during my English learning. Writing fell apart from me, becoming a designated process to meet certain requirement passively. However, being led through the ENG101 “Play Make Write Think” class by Instructor Morgen, I started to feel the intrinsic eagerness of producing writing as art pieces. Writing then become a tool of self-expression, which no longer conflicts with the audience-oriented goal of getting my audience to understand my messages thanks to all the techniques I learnt.
The exhibition of my work for this class therefore presents writing as a pathway of communication. Dividing the exhibition into four parts, I hope to build a conversation about how the topic of the class, gameful strategy of living, can be employed on both writing and exploration to one’s identity. The first part of the exhibition is an introduction of my role as a writer in this conversation. The second part is composed with my two discussions about games, pointing to the core message of this conversation about merging game and writing. While the third part emphasizes the gameful writings brought by collaboration and interaction between individuals, the fourth part branches out gameful strategy to trivial events that makes my life splendid.
Nonetheless, the construction of the communication and self-exploration writing process require essential techniques that organize my thoughts into text. Instructor’s Morgen’s emphasis on writing as a process, scholarly synthesis of others’ ideas, and presentation of ideas on different genres helps me through this process accompanying with his enforcement in the visual design and various media.
The composition of game-analysis-based podcast episodes that is included in the third part of my exhibition pinpoints the definition of game and being gameful and appropriately delivers it to the audience by demonstrating the writing as a process and scholarly analysis of other ideas. In terms of writing process, a great focus on the purpose until furnishing the podcast with accurate sound effect make the process of writing out the podcast more efficient and transform the product to be more completed. After deciding the topic of the podcast as “Plague Inc.”, the crucial task for the me and my group mate as the authors was to relate the topic of the episode to the general idea of the series about introducing game’s influence on areas other than entertainment. With some research and a discussion with Instructor Morgen, we quickly decided on “to emphasize the health education purpose of Plague Inc. under its anti-humanism setting”, as I mentioned in my reflection letter. And the rest of the work came “quite efficiently”. I believe that the initial setting of purpose and audience acts as a fence for the future work. And especially in a collaboration mode of writing, the defining of health education as a game analysis podcast episode can easily clear out the direction of topic that will go into the record room. Furthermore, finalizing the podcast as a piece of writing in details also helps reinforce the message that is about to convey. I addressed in the reflection that “we put the sound effects of coughing and ambulance in the podcast”, which serves as a final compensation of the conversation content in the podcast. Without the writing process, it is easy to ignore the process of reflecting back on the writing and improve it with characterizing tone. The threatened and anxious atmosphere that we conveyed with disease-related sound effect brings the audience attention to the crucial health crisis problem that we were arguing “Plague Inc.” is focusing on. Beyond this project, I am looking to incorporate this “step-by-step” process into preparation for presentations and other interactive pieces by understanding the audience and purpose before cutting into the big chunk of the writing.
Scholarly analysis of others’ idea also contributes to the formation of central message in the podcast. In the episode about “Pokemon GO!”, I approach the initiative of “Pokemon GO!” which is to encourage people to go explore and exercise with my personal experience, while my partner uses quotes from the news to interpret the goal of the game. The combination of these process requires me to synthesize both the facts my partner mentions and my partner’s interpretation to it. For example, when she brings up the originality of augmented reality that was later employed as a main feature in “Pokemon GO!” and argues that to be a major way to get the players immersed in the game, I added on that it is what symbolizes how the game blurs the boundary between reality and “video games”. With that I link back to the way of the game accomplishes its purpose of getting people outdoors with its gameful strategy. It is important for me to fully understand why my partner comes up with the idea as the augmented reality involves the visual, movement, and auditory sense of the players. To perform a scholarly take on that, I extend on others’ lens in viewing pieces of evidence and analyze it putting it into the context of the podcast. This approach helped rounded my argument about the exercising initiative of the game with the support of others’ view points and evidence. This strategy is crucial for my writing in other areas like natural science, as critical synthesis of others’ finding or advise is the main source of inspiration for new researches.
Writing in different genres requires the understanding of the context and convention of each genre, which will in turns pays off by giving the audience unique takes of the writing based on the genre’s convention in expressing the content. During this course, I jump out of the normal essay style writing and turned to blog posts. This encourages me to explore the online posts’ convention of simple languages, light-hearted tone, and visual designs. I also find this process a good demonstration to the learning outcome about visual analysis as well as online posting. Because the visual message stands out the most in an online space, I chose to create my own image each of the time to make it reflective of my writing. In my article about weekly emotion tracking, I choose a color spectrum to reflect the level of negativity in my emotions. The simple contrast of the color is obvious for the readers and allow them to visualize my data easily. In terms of word choices, I give up using gorgeous, complicated vocabularies to describe my feelings. Instead, I realize using simple words like “strong”, “hope”, and even “good or bad”. Both the simple word choices and straight-forward visual designs corresponds with the convention of a blog post genre, which promotes a quick and scanning reading style. The audience pay more attention to the attractiveness of the content over the deliberate wording style, and thus a focus on the core message, in this case the variation of emotions, becomes the main dragging force for communication between the audience and the author. Conclusively, I realize how my language style and writing strategy can vary among different genres. And each of the genre provides me with a new way of communicating with the audience if I use it in the right way.
To sum up, ENG101 with Instructor Morgen exposes me to the wide range of tools that I can employed in writing: the writing as a process, critical thinking on other ideas, wide range of writing genres, and the facilitation of visual and online medias all shape my writing to be more diverse and expressive.