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I'm panicking (1 Viewer)

mollytee

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May 9, 2015
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88
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2017
I can't remember what mark I got internally, the finish product was only submitted an hour before it had to be "Officially emailed to bostes" lol. But I had a teacher from another faculty, who has read every major work my school has produced, critique mine, he said it was very "solid" and the reflection statement was killer. Got full marks for that I know.

I still don't understand why your teacher expects so much of you so early... My crazy teacher stimulated our senses by doing writing exercises and just messing around with our interests for Term 4, and only over the summer holidays were we expected to do anything - consistently students here get E4 based on her teaching methods.

I still think you have the aptitude to do well in this subject, just having the initiative to consult ex-students online shows that you are taking this course seriously and geez you would have a mint reflection statement to go with whatever you submit because the tribulations you face in this subject are exciting to markers.

Summer holidays are long and by the second week boring as fuck - you'll have plenty of time to think of something, and if shit hits the fan and you still haven't progressed beyond this stage in February of 2017 then you may as well pull the string.
Omg I wish we were doing writing exercises right now lmao. I'm not sure how common this is but our first draft needs to be done in the summer holidays.

Anyway your answers helped me out heaps and gave me perspective. Thanks so much. I'll see what happens.
 

Orwell

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I'm really going to focus on my isolating an idea and working towards it after the EE2 seminar this Friday, which seems a little daunting but I feel it's for the best. Anyone think I'm leaving it too long?

Also, should I start working on my journal now even though I don't know what I'm doing?
 

lizerdqueen

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I'm breaking this up into reassurance and advice here:

Part uno


IMO your teacher needs to chill.

I'm gonna start out by saying I'm not some prodigy who manages to spit out 6000 words of pure gold overnight, so none of the following events were based on skill but rather most teacher's over-exaggeration of how difficult Ext 2 is gonna be. I did Ext 2 this year, spent 2.5 terms working on a movie script about the cycle of war before switching to a short story with a completely different concept 3 weeks before the draft and came first, then my 6 year old laptop decided to die a week before the BOSTES due date so I ended up rewriting the whole thing (with ANOTHER completely dif concept) in that week because my dumb ass did not back up my work in the cloud or on a USB– It was 100% different to what I had talked about in my Viva Voce and Report and contained no part of what I submitted for the Draft Assessment and I still ranked first in all assessments and in the whole course internally, with the major I submitted to BOSTES (my first draft, btw) estimated to get an E3-4 mark.

My point is; unless your final topic requires some extensive research that you definitely need in order to write your story (like a lot of scientific/medical terminology if your character is a scientist, or historical and cultural information if your story is set in another time period or country), your research in term one doesn't mean shit and don't worry about what your teacher says.

Part dos

I recommend you temporarily come up with some bullshit deep concept that you don't really care about but will make your teachers happy, research it a lot for the Viva Voce, making sure you address everything on the Viva Voce checklist extensively, use a couple of philosophers or theorists to back you up and have a couple of famous (or just good) examples of the style you want to write in and you'll be sweet (I got full marks for mine and have a list of everything you need to include if you want it). All the while, think about what you're actually passionate about, and use your 6 week summer holidays to focus on that. It'll only take you a week or so to actually write the draft and often the first copy doesn't need as much redrafting as the teachers pretend it does.

If you can't think of anything you like well enough to write about, think of something you absolutely hate and come up with something that is anti- that (so for example if you can't stand something like YA books about cancer, write something that completely throws shade at the YA-existentialist-cancer-story concept. My friend hated inaccurate representations of East Asians in mainstream literature so much that she wrote how they should be correctly represented; whereas I was so done with the trope of the "chosen one" always being a hero that I wrote a story that was resistant against that.

Or if you're really stuck, I suggest expanding on a concept you learnt about in Extension 1 Prelim or are learning about in either Advanced or Extension 1 HSC because relating your major to your other English courses is part of the marking criteria. You could probably also use something from Prelim Advanced but you would have to make it a lot deeper as it's at a slightly lower level than Prelim EE1 or Year 12 Advanced.

In regards to your major work journal I recommend you put some notes + articles in before the VV as I think it contributes to the mark, not sure though. Even if you don't have a concept yet you can still fill it out with research on creative writing, your form, writing style, structure etc and do all your brainstorming for your concept in the book. If it's starting to look like you're just printing things out and sticking them in, write dot points on articles rather than using them verbatim and print out some short stories, highlight techniques in rainbow colours and annotate a fuckload of bullshit because research into creative writing is really the only research you end up using throughout the whole year. Don't neglect the MWJ, you'll find that if you actually focus on putting entries in there, your major work will end up writing itself.

Honestly the teachers make it out as if you're going to need to spend an hour a day researching, planning, and redrafting for the entire duration of your HSC and as a result need to get the first draft finished ASAP when in reality everyone I know who did the subject had the same experience of a 12 week period in the middle after your first couple of drafts where you're literally doing nothing at all, maybe changing like one or two sentences out of your whole 6000 words per week because there's only so much the teachers tell you to do after the initial story (then suddenly they come up with a million more things once it's submitted as a draft, which is kinda annoying – because it means no matter HOW prepared you are before then there's literally nothing you can do to prevent the hectic redrafting period after you get your draft marks back)

Good luck with your major and I hope you eventually find something you enjoy writing about :awesome:
 
Last edited:

mollytee

Member
Joined
May 9, 2015
Messages
88
Gender
Female
HSC
2017
I'm breaking this up into reassurance and advice here:

Part uno


IMO your teacher needs to chill.

I'm gonna start out by saying I'm not some prodigy who manages to spit out 6000 words of pure gold overnight, so none of the following events were based on skill but rather most teacher's over-exaggeration of how difficult Ext 2 is gonna be. I did Ext 2 this year, spent 2.5 terms working on a movie script about the cycle of war before switching to a short story with a completely different concept 3 weeks before the draft and came first, then my 6 year old laptop decided to die a week before the BOSTES due date so I ended up rewriting the whole thing (with ANOTHER completely dif concept) in that week because my dumb ass did not back up my work in the cloud or on a USB– It was 100% different to what I had talked about in my Viva Voce and Report and contained no part of what I submitted for the Draft Assessment and I still ranked first in all assessments and in the whole course internally, with the major I submitted to BOSTES (my first draft, btw) estimated to get an E3-4 mark.

My point is; unless your final topic requires some extensive research that you definitely need in order to write your story (like a lot of scientific/medical terminology if your character is a scientist, or historical and cultural information if your story is set in another time period or country), your research in term one doesn't mean shit and don't worry about what your teacher says.

Part dos

I recommend you temporarily come up with some bullshit deep concept that you don't really care about but will make your teachers happy, research it a lot for the Viva Voce, making sure you address everything on the Viva Voce checklist extensively, use a couple of philosophers or theorists to back you up and have a couple of famous (or just good) examples of the style you want to write in and you'll be sweet (I got full marks for mine and have a list of everything you need to include if you want it). All the while, think about what you're actually passionate about, and use your 6 week summer holidays to focus on that. It'll only take you a week or so to actually write the draft and often the first copy doesn't need as much redrafting as the teachers pretend it does.

If you can't think of anything you like well enough to write about, think of something you absolutely hate and come up with something that is anti- that (so for example if you can't stand something like YA books about cancer, write something that completely throws shade at the YA-existentialist-cancer-story concept. My friend hated inaccurate representations of East Asians in mainstream literature so much that she wrote how they should be correctly represented; whereas I was so done with the trope of the "chosen one" always being a hero that I wrote a story that was resistant against that.

Or if you're really stuck, I suggest expanding on a concept you learnt about in Extension 1 Prelim or are learning about in either Advanced or Extension 1 HSC because relating your major to your other English courses is part of the marking criteria. You could probably also use something from Prelim Advanced but you would have to make it a lot deeper as it's at a slightly lower level than Prelim EE1 or Year 12 Advanced.

In regards to your major work journal I recommend you put some notes + articles in before the VV as I think it contributes to the mark, not sure though. Even if you don't have a concept yet you can still fill it out with research on creative writing, your form, writing style, structure etc and do all your brainstorming for your concept in the book. If it's starting to look like you're just printing things out and sticking them in, write dot points on articles rather than using them verbatim and print out some short stories, highlight techniques in rainbow colours and annotate a fuckload of bullshit because research into creative writing is really the only research you end up using throughout the whole year. Don't neglect the MWJ, you'll find that if you actually focus on putting entries in there, your major work will end up writing itself.

Honestly the teachers make it out as if you're going to need to spend an hour a day researching, planning, and redrafting for the entire duration of your HSC and as a result need to get the first draft finished ASAP when in reality everyone I know who did the subject had the same experience of a 12 week period in the middle after your first couple of drafts where you're literally doing nothing at all, maybe changing like one or two sentences out of your whole 6000 words per week because there's only so much the teachers tell you to do after the initial story (then suddenly they come up with a million more things once it's submitted as a draft, which is kinda annoying – because it means no matter HOW prepared you are before then there's literally nothing you can do to prevent the hectic redrafting period after you get your draft marks back)

Good luck with your major and I hope you eventually find something you enjoy writing about :awesome:
Wow. Thank you so so much!
 

chiefpasco

Member
Joined
Mar 9, 2015
Messages
135
Location
dprk
Gender
Male
HSC
2016
I'm really going to focus on my isolating an idea and working towards it after the EE2 seminar this Friday, which seems a little daunting but I feel it's for the best. Anyone think I'm leaving it too long?

Also, should I start working on my journal now even though I don't know what I'm doing?
yeah, even though the journal is not marked its good to let your brain spill onto the paper - in case bostes chases you up. leaving it "too long" in terms of having an "idea" would be by the end of first term in 2017 - that's pushing it for some people's standards though. I was fortunate and knew exactly what I was going to do because I knew I was going to pick up EE2 and I had all prelim to think about it.
 

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