Today’s tutor in the spotlight is Taryn.
Taryn is a third year PhD student in the English Department, specializing in American Literature. In 2015, she started working in the University Writing Center and moved to the Graduate Student Writing Center in 2016. She teaches 2000-level English courses such as English 2307: Introduction to Fiction and English 2306: Introduction to Drama. Taryn is currently a TEACH Fellow through the TLPDC and won a 2017 Helen Devitt Jones Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award. After graduation, she plans to pursue a teaching position in late nineteenth and twentieth century American Literature at a small liberal arts college. When she’s not teaching or tutoring, Taryn enjoys traveling, watching sports, and writing short stories.
A writing struggle that Taryn has overcome – or is at least working on – is finding focused time to write. As a PhD student, she is busy with teaching, tutoring, studying for exams, and trying to have a life! Although there are weeks where she feels completely unproductive, Taryn thinks it’s important to set aside designated, weekly writing time. She designates two hours for writing on Monday mornings and Wednesday afternoons. Regardless of productivity, Taryn likes to use this time to “force” herself to be focused solely on some part of the writing process; she doesn’t allow any type of media distraction (expect for instrumental music) during this time. If she is feeling very productive, Taryn will write longer than her designated time. Similarly, Taryn makes writing appointments at the UWC or GSWC throughout the semester, especially if she needs to set a deadline for herself. Taryn is also planning on joining a writing group during the fall semester through the GSWC.
Have tips for Taryn to overcome finding focused time to write? Plan on using her “designated writing time” strategy to improve your own writing? Leave her comments below!