Anna is a senior from Boston majoring in English literature and minoring in fine arts. When she’s not working in The Writing Center, she is probably still in Olin Library, where she also works in the shelving department. Besides being in Olin, Anna enjoys running, painting, visiting art museums, and being outdoors.
What brought you to The Writing Center?
I took a fiction class my senior year of high school, and the workshops in this class helped me become comfortable sharing and talking about my work. I found it liberating to use conversation to work through my ideas, and I was really excited when I discovered that is exactly what The Writing Center does. Writing has a reputation for being a very solitary activity, and getting involved with The Writing Center seemed like a great way to combat the solitude and participate actively in Wash U’s writing community!
What do you like most about working with writers at The Writing Center?
The “a-ha” moments are my favorite parts of a session! Watching ideas or solutions come together for a writer as we talk is so rewarding, and I love being part of that process!
What do you find most challenging about writing?
I always have trouble starting my drafts. Sometimes I even find myself looking for more evidence to procrastinate as I wait for a mythical “perfect first sentence” to come to me, from which I assume (mistakenly) the rest of my paper will flow. At this point, I have to let go of trying to write anything polished and focus on putting my information into functional sentences that I can change and move around.
What advice do you have for writers?
Talk! Explaining your ideas to someone can help you realize your main point. Reading your papers aloud before turning them in can help you notice the small mistakes your eyes ignore. Asking questions—to yourself, your professors, your friends—keeps you challenging and working through your topic. Writing is all about communicating an idea to your audience, and audible words can really help clarify your written ones!