Writing Assignment Sample – Elizabethe Kramer Analyzes Her Handwriting

by Randy Murray on January 12, 2011

Today I’m pleased to publish a completed Writing Assignment from a close friend, Elizabethe Kramer.

Elizabethe and I have been have been friends for years, but I originally took notice of her as a successful business writer, someone I modeled my current career after. As a day job she is now the VP of 3D Agile + Mobile for CareWorks Technologies, in Dublin, Ohio. I’ll be talking about a very exciting iPad app that they’re working on and will be available soon (think Agile methodology to manage professional and personal projects - and free!).

When I gave Elizabethe a copy of my new book, Writing Assignments, she immediately went home and began completing assignments. She told me, “It was fun. I’m surprised how much getting back to creative writing reduces stress and aggravation.” So I asked her to share one of her completed assignments with you. Here’s her submission from the assignment you’ll only find in the book: Analyze Your Own Handwriting.

In second grade, a bet and subsequent fall from a tree delayed my learning cursive, or, writing in script. Four years later, my moody, demanding sixth-grade teacher announced a yearlong penmanship contest where the winner would be formally recognized (Translation: not be ridiculed by her for a entire school day) and awarded the Palmer Method pen set used all year during the contest. Yes, comparisons abound. Why, it’s like running a race for an entire month and winning AND getting to keep the shoes! Or taking part in a Man Vs. Food contest and winning AND getting to keep the 7-pound, beer-battered bacon cheeseburger.

I wanted to win that stupid contest, though. I didn’t care about the fussy red pen. I didn’t care much about beating prissy Mary C— at something, anything. Deep down, I really just wanted Mrs. Moodydemanding to lay off the comments that relegated my handwriting heads and shoulders below everyone else’s. So, all year, I labored away Scottishly, until in late May, she was forced to admit I had won.

Forty years later, however, the victory has begun to wear thin. My handwriting is in decline. Letters slink in and out of print and cursive as though they don’t know each other. They begin with good cheer and unbridled hope for the future. Then they disappoint and shrug away the inconsistency. They make wild claims of visual superiority and clarity. Then they refuse to commit to a unified purpose. They strike out on bold and adventurous journeys. Then they twist and fold into fulltime employee status.

Like any reasonable person, I’ve spent a fair amount of time analyzing what happened to my once-beautiful penmanship. And no, I didn’t use the red Palmer pen to create my test cases. That would be silly. I sold that pen to Mary C— before the first day of junior high. So, though I don’t know how something so right went so wrong, I can’t hold a grudge. This is not a case of youthful reflection. It’s a case of bad symbolism. It’s clear: My handwriting is simply putting in time, waiting for a keyboard to show up.

If you enjoyed this piece or it inspired you to complete your own Writing Assignment, please leave a comment here or drop her an email at [email protected].

The Writing Assignment Sample – Elizabethe Kramer Analyzes Her Handwriting by Randy Murray, unless otherwise expressly stated, is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Iain Broome January 12, 2011 at 8:30 am

Great example of your assignments at work!


Randy Murray January 12, 2011 at 8:51 am

How about you, Iain? I’d be happy to publish one of yours, too! Or here’s a challenge: write a writing assignment.

And yes, I am an exceptionally lazy man. Tom Sawyer was a genius.


Ann Janzen January 12, 2011 at 8:37 pm

I adore her third paragraph “letters slink in and out… “. That entire paragraph is pure genius. What fun to read it!


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