The end is near, my friends. The final essay is due in less than four days. When I hand in that stapled bundle of papers, a feeling of relief is going to wash over me. But not quite as strongly as the feeling of relief I experienced when I turned in the very large bundle of papers that comprised the complete annotations this past Monday! It honestly felt like I had just crossed the finish line of a marathon. That happiness lasted… For a day.
Because when I started writing the paper, I realized it wasn’t going to be as easy as I had imagined. I anticipated plowing through the paper easily. Perhaps it would take me a night or two to bust it out and then I could spend the rest of the four days editing it to perfection, right? Wrong. For some reason, I am experiencing difficulties with finishing this paper. I think, first and foremost, that I am over-thinking it. But I also know it is difficult to write because I have such a vast amount of information and I don’t know how to organize it in the most appropriate fashion. Also, this essay is the first time in Information Gathering that we have had to use our own creative thoughts and opinions regarding our topics. Obviously we’ve been writing these blog posts for the course of the semester. But we have not had to do any substantial assignment that required us to invent and use our own arguments. Using the information I recovered from my research for my argumentative essay is far more difficult than using it in the annotations. I have difficulty managing multiple tasks or thoughts at the same time and, therefore, am struggling to complete the essay.
However, complaints aside, I must admit a part of me is enjoying writing this paper. It’s sort of like the frosting on the cake of hard work I have been baking all semester. Now that I am a “plastic-bag policy expert” I love forming my own arguments about what should be done to reduce the environmental impact of plastic bags. It is exciting to uncover the truths concerning the plastic-bag movement in the United States. There are so many different perspectives on this issue and governments have addressed it in varying ways. I have had the opportunity to educate myself so well on this topic that I am confident in identifying when a government adopted a policy that truly isn’ the ideal policy to adopt. I also love when I can invalidate claims made by the plastics industry using information that contradicts its often carelessly crafted arguments.
So now that it’s truly the home stretch for this class, I am enjoying using the skills and knowledge I’ve ascertained in the past three months. However, I will enjoy such newfound abilities much more when I turn in the paper on Monday! There is much work to be done between here and now. But I think I will be done by Friday so that I have the weekend to edit. I’m keeping my fingers crossed!