new writing project

I’ll keep writing about heart stuff, but I’ve got a writing assignment now, and it’s due in about three months. I’m writing a response essay to an article in an academic journal. The article discusses the ending of a novel I have already written about (J. M. Coetzee’s Disgrace) and philosophical concerns about the value of human and non-human animal life.

I’ve read the essay I’m responding to once so far — just enough to decide whether or not I wanted to take on this writing. I’ve never written a response essay, but I’ve read them. I’ll be getting more direction soon from an editor at the journal.

I think a lot about the issues I write about — and often I think in a perfectionist way. That is, I feel I need to read everything, research everything, follow every lead. This detective work can be immensely rewarding, especially when I make connections or find information I never anticipated. But with this essay, I’d like to rely much more on my own thinking. I have studied and taught this novel a lot. And the ending still bothers me. I am not as familiar with the philosophical issues, and that’s where I need to rein myself in and not canter off to research OCD.

Any volunteers for reading the article and talking about it with me?

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