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Kenzie Gamlin 

ENGL 101 

Professor Frederick 

22 September 2022 

“Kenzie” the Writer 

"We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect." - Anaïs Nin. 


Writing shaped my life and changed the trajectory of my early adolescence. My younger self always enjoyed writing. The way it can share emotions, ideas, and stories, it all amazed me. Dreaming of a pencil flowing onto a paper or an old typewriter sitting in my room. The world of belles-lettres, (french for fine literature), fascinated me. Now, having matured, writing and literature has proved itself so important. I want to pursue writing and literature as a career. Pondering upon my experiences with writing, a few come to mind: a poem about Christmas time in the fourth grade, last year writing an ode to what I am grateful for, and at the beginning of my senior year, drafting an introductory essay about myself for my first task in the journalistic world. 

Eight years ago, in the fourth grade, my teacher Mrs. Roller gave us a poetry assignment that taught me the important lesson of perspective and respect. Learning something new, “little me” was extremely excited to study poetry and receive the chance to create my own. Something about poetry and writing seemed very magical to me. If I could write and take part in it, I would be an adult. A professional. An artist. Nearing mid-December, Mrs.Roller assigned a poem to us. With a poem assigned in December, what else would one write about besides Christmas? I constructed a lengthy free-verse poem that did not make much sense. However, I believed that it moved Mrs. Roller’s heart and stirred her emotions. Perhaps she did see light in my poetry, however, when she pulled me over to go through my poem, the emotional experience “little me” believed to take place did not occur. One of the lines in my poem consisted of something similar to “when someone dresses up as Santa for the holidays.”  Mrs. Roller pulled me over during a free-reading part of class and pulled out my poem. First, she told me she thoroughly enjoyed it, and she could see great promise in my writing. But then, she told me she does not want me to repeat my poem to anyone. Quite concerned, I asked, “Why?” She simply responded by telling me that many people in the room still believed in Santa Claus and telling my peers that someone dressed up like him would ruin their perception of the big jolly man. But Mrs. Roller did not know that I, just like my peers, did not know the secret behind Santa Claus. I knew someone dressed up as him for tradition. Maybe a dad or grandpa comes down the stairs or attempts a small jump from inside a chimney for a fun game. However, I still believed a real Santa Claus existed. That Christmas, “little me” finally learned the lie I had been told for many years. I would no longer believe in Santa! Learning about this secret taught me an important lesson of how some people fall behind on the learning curves compared to others and how it is important to respect what others believe and to also continue the path of growing for myself. It was time for me to grow and for my perspective on Christmas and part of the world around me to change.  

Next, my junior year of high school, I wrote a journal about what I was grateful for.  This experience would start to teach me what I wanted to pursue in my life. In Mrs. Rust’s Honors 11 English class, she made us all write journals. She bought over a hundred little brown covered journals that had about 100 pages in them. She really wanted us to fill them up and use them all the time. However, none of us did any of that. Personally I rarely used mine. So, when it came to our grades, we all did terrible and had many points counted off. To receive some of the points back we had lost from the negligence of our journals, we had the opportunity to complete different assignments. I chose an assignment writing an overall journal essay about what I was grateful for. Multiple journals into one long writing. Writing for a couple of hours one night, I finished it up all at once, like normal. With every word, writing became more and more interesting. I came to my conclusion, somewhat proud. The journal opened up my heart and told a story to my teacher. She read said journal and gave me praise. She said I had a knack for writing and to keep with it. A confidence booster to say the least! I really enjoyed my writing that night and felt  I could keep writing repeatedly and fall in love with it. This was the first time I saw writing as a viable future for me. I am thankful for Mrs. Rust and the positive reinforcement she has had on me. A reinforcement that has made me excited about becoming a writer. 

Finally, on August ninth of 2022, only a week before writing the first draft of this essay, I drafted an introductory narrative-style paper at my new job as an HCCSC communications intern. This writing, the first to open the doors to a career in journalism and, competitively, the most impactful writing so far. Eric, my mentor, told me to write an introductory page about myself for him to read and see where my writing style landed. Very vague in his instructions, Eric didn’t want to give me any guidelines. He did not tell me any specifics. He just let me write. This newfound freedom was an exceptionally wonderful feeling. It was just me, my computer, and whatever words were written on the page. I wrote about my family and our dynamics. My childhood obsessions and memories. My restaurant job as a server, and many other aspects of my life. I sat in my brand-new office at my brand-new job for multiple hours typing up this page. Analyzing parts of myself I did not realize needed analyzing. My writing felt exciting, but at the same time calm. Finding something that not only created a passage of exhilaration but also something that felt fitting and calm to myself. It was a great first paper to write. One that will lead me to one day becoming a full-time professional writer.  


From the time I attended elementary school writing poetry in Mrs. Roller’s fourth grade class, to high school, my junior year, writing in journals for Mrs. Rust’s English 11 Honors class, and even at my first internship writing my first paper, I have found joy in writing and learned an abundance about my environment and myself while doing so. Over the years, many people, many papers, and many assignments have shaped my writing experience. Thankfully, with so many excellent experiences, it is safe to say I enjoy writing and I do not want to give it up anytime soon!  I hope my experiences with writing keep occurring in such a positive way. And I expect that Expository Writing continues to teach me about myself and how to improve my writing skills in a professional manner.  

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