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 Critical Thinking
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Critical Thinking, Thoughtful Writing, Second Edition
John Chaffee et al.
Writing Projects
Chapter 3: Imagining Your Life Lived More Creatively

Imagine how your life could be more satisfying or exciting. You will need to focus on one or more specific areas of your life, such as an important relationship, your college work, or a job that would be ideal for you. Visualize how your future will be when you creatively transform this part of your life, and think about what you must do in the present to achieve this imagined goal. Alternatively, you could describe a creative breakthrough you had in the past that enabled you to envision your life more creatively. Then write an essay in which you present your vision.


Purpose: Be imaginative. Create a new, but realistic, vision of how your own life could be different. Try to show, not just tell, what the creative changes in your life could be.

Audience: For this kind of reflective writing, you are important part of your audience. In this sense, you are stepping back and becoming an observer—even a critical evaluator—of your own life. Of course, you still have to communicate ideas clearly to others.

Subject: You are your own subject. Be fair and be realistic. But don't afraid to be imaginative and to challenge yourself at the same time.

Writer: You are the expert here. No one else knows more about your aspirations than you do. So don't shrink from describing them.

Generating Ideas: Think about what is important to you now and in the future. Make a list of your goals—list as many as possible, both big and small—and consider which of these might be appropriate for this topic. You may find that your small goals can be organized under the more general "big goals" you are able to list.

List large and small goals here and consider emailing your list to a classmate or the instructor for response. Which goals might lend themselves best to this assignment?

Defining a Focus: Start with a basic statement like: I want to change my life by becoming.... Fill in the blank, and there's your focus.

Write your statement here.

Organizing Ideas: Think in terms of a current or past situation versus your imagined, future situation. How are you going to connect these two clearly for your readers? In just a few sentences, write out how your past situation bears upon your current one.

Write your statement here.

Drafting: Make notes on drafts as you print them out (or write them out by hand).

Revising: When you revise, decide whether or not to incorporate the notes you've made on various drafts and outlines. If you participate in peer review, consider reading your work aloud to your peer review group. Are they getting the key points you want them to get?

Proofreading: Always proofread as the final step in the writing process. When you proofread, you are not exactly revising. Proofreading means looking for word, sentence and paragraph level errors in grammar and punctuation. Poor proofreading can have an very badly affect on your final wokr. Here's a link to some commonly used proofreading symbols.

Submit your answers
Either print your answers out for submission or email them to your instructor.