I'm about to shock you with a strange but true fact.
I, a published author, send my college essays to the writing center for proofreading before submitting them.
Well, at least sometimes. In one particular class--a class that's made me read nine entire novels this semester--I get extra credit if I submit my essays to the writing center. Since I'm persnickety about my grades, and because an extra eye certainly wouldn't hurt things, I go ahead and ship off my essays.
I had two essays due this week. One of them was about gender in Henry James's novella Daisy Miller. Actually, it didn't have to be about gender. The professor let us pick the topic, and gender was one of the suggested ideas--because, you know, all books written before 1970 portray women as inferior and submissive, right? And it's important that college students understand the nuances of the patriarchy. (God forbid we're taught anything useful like how to write a resume or balance a checkbook.)
I actually think that the females run the roost in Daisy Miller. In one scene, the titular character goes on a walk--scandalously--with not one, but two men. A better-mannered female friend drives up in a carriage and asks that Daisy come away with her to save her reputation. Daisy refuses, but one of the men capitulates. So much for the patriarchy.
Anyway, that was the easy paper.
The hard one was the one I shipped off to the writing center. The one I got a surprising amount of feedback on, because I simply gave up while writing it. The assignment went something like this:
"Pick two or three of the five post-apocalyptic books we've read this semester, find a theme they all share, and write about it. And oh, by the way, you have to write about how COVID-19 has created an apocalyptic moment for you. (We don't care if the genetically engineered humans in Oryx and Crake give you anxiety. You're an adult. Deal with it.) Here's a page requirement and word count requirement that don't mesh with each other. Oh, and it's worth 30% of your grade for the class."
(And the genetically engineered humans in Oryx and Crake DID bother me, thank you. Along with the child pornography, murder live streams, and freak-of-nature ChickieNobs. I echo the main character's cry of "F***ing Crake!")
Sorry for ranting. I'm glad the semester's almost over. One teacher says we only have one more week of school; another teacher says we have two weeks. I don't know who to listen to. Confused is an understatement. I don't know what's going on in life at this point.
The good news is, I was able to make a really fun parody of a poem in one of my other classes. I'll release it for you next Monday.
What's the most ridiculous assignment you got in school? Let me know in the comments below! God bless you, dear readers, and don't forget to Like us on Facebook!
M. J. Piazza is a Jesus-loving, dog-walking country girl who just so happens to write books.