What I learned in Persuasive Writing

This past semester I have taken a course essential to my major called Persuasive Writing with Matt Elliott. Throughout the semester I have reviewed the 20 most common AP style errors, how to properly write a strategic message planner and feature story, what goes into a media kit and much more.

In Persuasive Writing I learned how to write a strategic message planner and found that this planner is essential to about every part of what I learned in the course. I continued to use the planner with almost all of our assignments and it became significantly easier as time passed. I have become faster at writing a strategic message planner and can get a planner out in roughly 15 minutes if I have all the information at hand.

In the same course, I learned how to write a feature story in several different styles. It was difficult, but I learned how to write like a journalist.

Another thing I learned in Persuasive Writing is what goes into a media kit. I learned that you need to have a news release, video news release script and video, photo gallery, fact sheet and a pitch letter.

In Persuasive Writing, I learned all of these skills and had a wonderful experience throughout.



Prior posts of this blog include in-class exercises for my Electronic Communications course at Oklahoma State University. Every week we practiced conversational-style, online writing focused on assigned articles. We picked one of the articles as our topic and wrote about our perspective on the issue(s) of the article.

Our course also had three major projects that entailed creating a short movie, picture slideshow and a podcast. These taught me how to use iMovie, Photoshop and GarageBand, as well as illustrated my creative flair. The projects emphasized to me the need for planning procedures and efficient, creative ways to put the project together.

At the beginning of this course I was not familiar with the technical program used for projects or blogging.  Applying the tools to projects was very helpful and interesting.  Because the projects were so straightforward, I found doing them to be fun. The difficult part I had was coming up with a topic for the “freelance” projects. The final project was simply pulling together the article responses and creative projects on my website based in WordPress.

“Cheers, R.”

Photo Courtesy of rexb/Flickr

Roger Ebert was a magnificent man. He wrote tremendous movie reviews for years and became a well respected man in his profession. Basically, if Roger Ebert said a certain movie was excellent, it was and you should definitely take time out of your day to see it. He died at the young age of 70 years old on April 4th. He had cancer of the thyroid and salivary glands since 2002. Despite this condition, he continued to write magnificent reviews and began writing on various topics on his blog, from alcoholism to atheism.

Roger Ebert will be greatly missed by everyone, but especially by his wife Chaz and one of his co-workers Christy Lemire. Christy wrote a wonderful article honoring the dearly departed Roger. Many young people do not know who this man is, which is sad. I hope in spite of his death, that his memory will still be able to touch the hearts of the young and old. May the inspiring Roger Ebert rest in peace.

Blocking Frenzy?

Photo courtesy of Brickhead Videos/Flickr

As of recently, Russia has gone on a blocking frenzy this year. So far they have gone after social media sites Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Facebook and Twitter have been quite complying to the Russian government, but YouTube is putting up a fight. Andrew Kramer’s article describes a few particular links or sites that the Russian government has it out for.

There is a specific YouTube video that the Russians want taken down, but YouTube is adamant about the video being intended for entertainment and should not be restricted. YouTube filed a lawsuit against the Russians over it. The video is harmlessly depicting how to make a face wound out of makeup materials and a razor blade. The Russians somehow think this is a control over child pornography and promotes drug use and suicide. I have not seen this video considering there are various different versions of how to make a fake wound, but if it is anything like the videos that I’ve seen, that is ridiculous. How can a video about making a fake wound be about pornography, promote drug use and/or suicide? I do not understand how the Russians can perceive a video like this into an act of pornography.

Blade Runner Cut Down

Photo courtesy of flickr/Nikolaos Chatzis

Oscar Pistorius the Blade Runner is a double amputee athlete. Before the age of one he had to have both of his legs surgically removed. Oscar did not let this condition put him down and neither did his family. His condition was never an issue in the family considering they went water skiing and other unheard of sports from a person in such a condition. When Oscar grew up he went on to win numerous medals from the Olympics and the Paralympic Games, while setting world records at the same time. This man was an enormous role model for children and adults around the globe. Everyone saw Oscar lead the South Africans in the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games this past year. He was an inspiration that has sadly been demoted to a criminal.

At dawn on Valentine’s Day he was arrested for shooting his girlfriend dead in their home. This man who overcame such obstacles in life has a very sinister and dark side. According to the police, these violent tendencies have escalated for years. It is heartbreaking to realize that he has gone down in such a horrible manner. There is still an investigation going on surround his girlfriend’s untimely demise. In the mean time the media are pointing the finger at Oscar and whether or not he is found innocent or guilty his name and reputation will forever be tainted with this horrible act. Children, paraplegics and others alike are ashamed of Oscar at these turn of events. I do not believe even if he is found innocent his career or reputation could ever recover. It is always terrible to see a star cut down in the prime of their career.

Is it worth it?

There was an article posted where a father bribed his 14-year-old daughter $200 to  stay off facebook for five months. I have a hard time believing that it would come to that to get his child off facebook. It does not say if she had much of a problem on facebook in the article written by Salvador Rodriquez. Even if your child had that much of a problem on facebook I do not believe that using a bribe would be a good idea. The father’s name is Paul Baier and he posted the following contract on his blog.

Facebook contract(Courtesy of Paul Baier)

Now bribing your child to do things that they should do in the first place is one of the worst things to do as a parent. You are teaching your child that bribery is OK and how you expect her to act, being paid to obey her parents. How is this a good message? Yes, you can still pay your children to do small housework chores, like mowing the lawn, mopping the floor, etc. There is no comparison to the small housework chores and bribing your own spawn. Bribery is terrible, so why are you attempting to teach your child that bribery is OK? Yes, the situation is different from bribing a political candidate, but it is still the same concept you are teaching her. I think this father needs to sit down and reevaluate what he is doing as a father, consider the ramifications of his actions. Yes, it will probably get his daughter off facebook for five months, but she will go right back onto the billion user site immediately afterwards. My question to Paul Baier is this: in the long run, is it worth it?


(Photo courtesy Football Schedule/Flickr)

Colin Kaepernick, age 25, is the starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, who played and lost in the Super Bowl this past Sunday, Feb. 3. Colin replaced Alex Smith in November of last year. He was a huge shock to the team, he is a 6’4″, 230 pound man, the fastest in probably any sport making him “perhaps the most dangerous and unpredictable offensive force in the game.” Originally he wasn’t even supposed to be in football, considering he was drafted to the Cubs and offered numerous Division 1 scholarships in baseball. Since Colin became the starting quarterback for the 49ers, he has become a bit of an icon.

He comes from adopted parents and expresses absolutely no interest in meeting his biological mother and father. Low and behold, the biological mother comes out of hiding and publicly states that she would love to meet her son. I wonder why she decides she would like to see him now? Could it be because of his new-found fame? I see no other reason it isn’t. Even though she desperately wants to meet him, it appears Colin is adamant in his disinterest of his biological mother.

Since starting, Colin has become famous for kissing his bicep with a tattoo saying ‘FAITH’ during football games. The fans started calling this “Kaepernicking” and sharing it on Twitter constantly. Since then, he has decided to trademark this phrase. Since his parents had previously lost two children to heart failure, Colin wanted to help this cause. He called up his parents and wanted their help on which particular charity he should donate money to. They eventually decided that Camp Taylor was the charity they were going to use. Once Colin trademarked his #Kaepernicking phrase, he started selling merchandise with the word. He tied the T-Shirts he was selling right into Camp Taylor, with the charity being the home of Kaepernicking. All the proceeds from the sales of the T-Shirts are going directly towards helping Camp Taylor. Colin still has a long career ahead of him in the NFL, but he sure is making a good start. I can’t wait to see more from him.