Arty-farty blog post on masters and students - intellectual masturbation
Remember my earlier post about the lack of useful, handy criticism? I understand that my friends love everything I do, and even if they don’t: they wouldn’t want to cut off my wings by saying something that may hurt my feelings. So okay; friends do not criticize. Fine.
Peer-counseling may be useful, but… ehh, dunno, I’m not so much into it. It’s like listening to demos and reading unpublished material AND NOTHING ELSE: good for the sake of variety, but sooner or later you must listen to oldschool artists and read classics in order to get a full grasp of art. Thus, peers may point out a couple of important things and great ideas, but… wouldn’t it be great to have a master or a coach that supervises “everything”? If you are a chef – your cooking, if you are a teacher – your teaching, if you are a writer – your writing etc. And peers (later called “contemporaries” :D), on the other hand, would always be there for intellectual chit-chat. Dream on, lol, in the era of quick mass production, haha.
Anyway, here is the source of my doubts: why do I get back two pieces of homework today, saying nothing but “A+, very talented writing and professional editing”, and not even a comma is being corrected in it? Of course it’s very flattering they liked those two articles, but… I can’t believe they are so perfect that there is nothing to add or change in them. It’s kinda funny because AGAIN, I sound like nothing ever is good for me, not even A+’s (which is relatively rare to get in school), but that’s not true… I’m very happy if others appreciate what I do, but for heaven’s sake, more feedback is needed on what are/were the strenghts and weaknesses of those papers. (At least Harle is quite active when it comes to in-depth analysis of homework-related stuff which comes very handy.)
In university, when I asked my fave modern literature teacher WHYYYY she would never add any detailed comments to my works, she simply said: “because you already know how to carry out a research project and write an essay, so what shall I say? I can only add that it was great or it could have been better” – thanks, lol. Plus, it’s bullshit I know how to write an essay; I re-read my old shit and found that 80% of that stuff is huge, fat bullshit. And if there is nothing to improve, why is it compulsory to have an instructor for the thesis-writing procedure? They don’t even read your writing, let alone giving any feedback.
I’m very much used to the no-feedback-ever situation on the work-front, but that’s fine: I get paid for it, so I must be THE EXPERT, no matter what – thus no time for analysis. If I was given the chance to do something, I would only get started if I knew I can do it AND am able to do it well. I want to be the best in whatever I’m doing – but it seems like most people are completely content with the mediocre, in all cases. Anyway. Whatever.
PS: Considering that I have barely had the time to write any decent homework stuff for Ildi (see earlier) but really love her outspoken, opinionated, free-spirited and creative approach, I decided to use her as a test-reader to some small portions of the virgin chapters of “Our Book”. Don’t be offended it was not you to “test” the thingie – I really needed someone who 1. does not know me too well; 2. does not know my other works and is not influenced by them; 3. dares to tell me if it’s stupid as she is a straightforward, down-to-earth, honest székely “girl”. Anyway, she told me she was very touched (!) by the parts she read (only gave her like six pages in Word, knowing she is in a leading position and would not have the time to read five million characters) and she thanked me very much for “the privilage of reading it first”. She said other nice things as well, which I would not mention here for obvious reasons, but in this light I can only hope that the remaining hundred-something pages are not significantly worse either… This life is still worth living, anyway.
Posted in my blog on 5th Dec 2007.