The Writing Process

Rarely in today’s world is it more about the process than it is the finished product. Here, I am going to take you through an entire composing process, more of an evolution, really. This is something I’ve never done before and it’s neat to see the whole thing here in a linear fashion. For this particular assignment, we were required to “re-purpose” an old piece of writing for a new audience. I chose to do my freshman year literature review, Age Related Cognitive Decline: Why Exercise May be the Fountain of Youth, about the relationship between exercise and developing dementias, specifically Alzheimer’s Disease.

This piece is aimed specifically at an academic audience, one mostly familiar with the jargon and basic physiology. A major goal of mine was to bridge the gap between the research scientists and the lay audience, or the general public, so I decided to make that attempt with this assignment and write an article for older Americans. I wanted my article to be something that would appear in a monthly AARP bulletin that people would receive in the mail. This was my outline and first draft. However, I found that I had to leave out an excruciating amount of detail I felt was important for the reader in order to meet the format constraints of that medium. Therefore, I decided to model my piece after a TIME article instead, which can be found here (right-click and hit Rotate Clockwise twice…you’ll see what I mean) and here. This platform allowed me to try my hand at writing for a lay audience, but still communicate the basic scientific research I wanted to.

The second draft of my re-purposed article was not exactly what I was going for (take 2). I found it was actually pretty hard to keep with the formatting of magazines. There were definitely many conscious micro-decisions I had to make to keep with the format. For example, writing in lay terms, adding graphics, having catchy titles. My final draft did the job much better after some heavy editing and peer reviewing.

The last step in this transformation process was to “re-mediate” the piece, or to keep the same audience, but to communicate with them through a different medium. I chose to make a Prezi with a Jing voiceover. You can view it on screencast.com by clicking here.

I envisioned this to be something that would be shown at an exercise clinic to a group of elderly sedentary individuals that would introduce them to the intervention as an orientation before an actual exercise physiolgist or researcher talked to them.

So there it is: a total transformation, composition, re-purpose, re-mediated, re-worked project. Enjoy.

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