All Is Not Lost: An Example of Good Grammar in High School

girl writing

Earlier, I posted about the “fruits and vegetables” of good grammar in a balanced writing diet.  As has been my habit of late, I wanted to follow up with examples to illustrate my point.  Usually, I search WordPress blogs.  I can spend the better part of a day browsing and reading (someday I’ll have to get a real job).  Today, I decided to ask my cousin Leah to send me some of her daughter’s writings.

Leah’s daughter, Kelsi, is a senior in high school.  She plans to attend a college or university next year and study English and perhaps Japanese.  Her current vocational goal is to become an editor.  I knew she had done some creative writing of her own and, while I had not read any of it, suspected it would be good.

I was right.  All is not lost.  There is still at least one high school student (and I’m sure many more) with a command of the language and a concern to use it well.

Below is an exerpt from a piece she wrote called “Remember”, which I’m posting by her permission.  I think many of you who read this blog (young and old) can identify with the dilemma she describes so well.

… Occasionally, my brain and my mouth make a connection, usually unwarranted. What is it that I remember which needs to be blurted out right this minute? It’s typically some random observation, some obscure fact that no one else would remember, something that happened this morning that I’d forgotten about until now, something that happened on page 625 of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Oftentimes it’s a song. I find myself singing the same lyrics over and over, sometimes at the top of my voice. But now and then I’ll get halfway through a song and a lapse of memory will plague me again. It’s gone.

Just as often, something else occurs to interest my easily distracted mind. As soon as I turn my attention to something else, whatever thought I had is out the window, and when I look back to find it again, it’s already on a train to Timbuktu. So I move on to the next thought, the next distraction, back to the spinning vortex, the organized mess that is my mind. . .

Now what was I talking about?

(image “Student writing in her workbook” from, some rights reserved)

6 thoughts on “All Is Not Lost: An Example of Good Grammar in High School

    • Kelsi certainly has a gift. Her mom sent me 3 pieces of her writing and each is written from a different “voice”, appealing to a different readership. Whatever she decides to pursue in the field of writing, I believe she will do well.

  1. I can totally relate to that. I could never write that well when I was her age. Though I’d like to think that I can now. Otherwise it would just be depressing. Not because high school students typically don’t have talent. Not because she’s a girl. Not because she’s young.

    Just because if it’s good writing, I’ll be envious and hate it anyway. 🙂

    • Kelsi is certainly gifted beyond her age. I do think we each grow as writers at distinct paces. When I was younger, I used to refuse to read much from my peers (especially if it was good) because I was both jealous and afraid I might be overly influenced. Now that I’m middle-aged (and have a daughter Kelsi’s age whose work I will also be featuring soon), I am thrilled when someone younger has a passion for writing and such a unique voice.

      Keep up the good writing.

    • I hope to continue reflection on this book – “Writing Well” and providing examples from blog posts and other writings. I’m glad you found it impressive. Keep coming back.

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