Why do we Write?

November 6, 2008 | By | 4 Replies More

Everyone has a different reason to write. Some like stories, and can find a publisher to pay them to create. Others write briefs to persuade a court, or articles to sway a constituency, or columns to move or amuse casual readers. For some, it is an unburdening; a barely cloaked confessional revealed in public. For many, to write is a rite. Others are trained word wrights. And some just enjoy the right to write right. But once we start, it becomes an addiction.

Then there is this guy: The Term Paper Artist. His engaging exposition reveals how desperately unqualified students can be. More interestingly, he shows how normally literate professionals are also handicapped when attempting to write in the deadly form of The Term Paper.

Who buys his term papers? He notes 3 main categories: Those promoted beyond their capacity (“brokers would even mark assignments with the code words DUMB CLIENT”); those required to take courses outside their capabilities (“A chemistry major trapped in a poetry class thanks to the vagaries of schedule and distribution requirements, or worse, the poet trapped in a chemistry class.”); and personal essays for college admission (parents aiding their darlings to get promoted beyond their capacity).

Me? I obviously like homonyms. And sharing gleanings from “teh interwebs”. And exposing answers to questions that most people are too well adjusted to ask. Don’t ask.

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Category: American Culture, Communication, Education, Humor, ignorance, Whimsy, Writing

About the Author ()

A convoluted mind behind a curly face. A regular traveler, a science buff, and first generation American. Graying of hair, yet still verdant of mind. Lives in South St. Louis City. See his personal website for (too much) more.

Comments (4)

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  1. I write because, impossible though it may be to believe, I'm even less competent at everything else.

  2. Erich Vieth says:

    Frederich Nietzsche on the "need" to write:

    But why do you write?—

    A: I am not one of those who think with an inky pen in their hand, much less one of those who in front of an open inkwell abandon themselves to their passions while they sit in a chair and stare at the paper. I am annoyed by and ashamed of my writing; writing is for me a pressing and embarrassing need, and to speak of it even in a parable disgusts me.

    B: But why, then, do you write?

    A: We, my friend, to be quite frank: so far, I have not discovered any other way of getting rid of my thoughts.

    B: And why do you want to get rid of them?–

    B: Enough! Enough!

    The Gay Science, Aphorism 93

  3. Erika Price says:

    That article from the term-paper prostitute was a very fun read. My favorite line:

    "The students aren't only cheating themselves. They are being cheated by the schools that take tuition and give nothing in exchange."

    He's referring, of course, to the fact that the same schools that flunk students for lacking the knowledge to write get a huge chunk of the responsibility for putting those students in such a state. At the college level, this is not exactly the case- it's more a mix of laziness on the student's part, and the damage already being done by a horrible public education, but it still resonates.

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