Writing for Myself, by Russell Baker

Writing for Myself, by Russell Baker

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     The point the author, Russell Baker, is making in his essay, “Writing for Myself,” is quite evident. When Mr. Fleagle, Baker’s English teacher, assigned an informal essay to be completed as homework, Baker immediately became baffled by the daunting task. Though reluctant to start, Baker knew that it he had to swallow his animosity toward writing and select a topic to write on.
     The problem with this picture is quite evident. Baker is taking the assignment from Mr. Fleagle as a burden instead of an opportunity to express his creativity. Outcomes are always greater when reluctancy is not present. As humans, we subconsciously put more effort into activities that spark an interest in us. Therefore, we excel in those fields.
     When Baker realized that he actually enjoyed writing, he became totally engrossed in his essay. As Mr. Fleagle read his essay in front of the class, Baker suddenly realized that writing was only what he made it. If he looked forward to writing then positive results were going to follow simply because it is human nature to work harder to become better at activities that we enjoy. So, by dreading writing, we put ourselves at a disadvantage because we simply will not become better at it.
     The purpose of Baker’s essay and its placement in The Prentice Hall Guide for College Writers is to encourage young writers to realize that writing truly is a privilege. It is also placed in the book to show college English students that writing does not have to be a grim task and that thinking of it in that manner will only make the student average.

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