Monday, April 18, 2005

Cinematic and Extra-Cinematic Determinations

It's been a week. About time I should post. No time right now. Like Zack, I'm stuck working on a big assignment, a term paper for my Crit Studies class that's due this Wednesday. I've chosen to write on Billy Wilder's The Apartment. Great movie, but that never made writing a paper more fun. No, strike that. I guess it would be worse writing about a crappy movie. But writing about a good one is still pretty bad. But I've spent a couple of days just compiling my notes. Now I'm writing the paper and the pages are filling up fast enough but I still have a lot of material to cover and I don't know if these ideas are organized very well.

Anyway, this is the first time I've written a paper since regular college (i.e. undergraduate). I really liked the idea that I'd left that behind. Oh well. It got to the point in my undergraduate paper writing where, the more proficient I got at writing papers, the more I would procrastinate when writing them. So, while freshman year I would deliriously freak out at one o'clock or three o'clock, by my last semester I would keep on crusing the internet until, say, five o'clock or seven o'clock before really freaking out. This way I could keep the pressure high. You need a bigger and bigger fix each time, I guess, to push you to get that paper done. The freakouts grew more severe, too. By the end almost every paper I turned in I was convinced was pure garbage, since I was barely conscious and utterly incoherent by the time I finished each one. The grades never got any worse, though. Maybe if they had I would have been healthier about it.

I think Zack should post his Syntax assignment so we see why he hates it so much.


Christa said...

I quite agree. With film papers, it HELPS to enjoy the film you write about. However, it doesn't make up for the fact that you actually have to sit down and write a paper at all.

For my part, I recently had to write one about Sergei Eisenstein and Dziga Vertov in order to compare and contrast their approaches to Soviet Montage. And after I stuck my pen into my brain in order to concentrate on all the wild-eyed machine-lovin' theories -- not to mention that damn COLLISION crap -- I think I got it done. I think. With this pen lodged in my brain, though, it has become somewhat hard to tell.

What have we learned today?
1) Don't stick a pen through your skull.
2) Any Billy Wilder film would certainly be cool enough to keep the greater amount of pens at bay.

lyan! said...

As far as writing on films, or anything really, I seem to write better papers on those subjects I actually dislike.
I think when I write on something I like, I coddle the subject a little too much and end up thinking its faultless. Whereas subjects I didn't like, at least I could see why people could still like it (even though it was crap) and get some dialogue.