Research Writer Interview With Raymond
Recounting of My Academic History and Background
It has been suggested that a short essay about myself, my interests and academic background, and, in particular, why I'm an excellent research writer would be useful in determining my proposed candidacy as a freelance academic writer with your organization. Since I seem to find myself at a distinct disadvantage in this respect, I am not inclined to disagree! Naturally, in light of the other requirements requested (resume and samples of academic writing), it is safe to conclude that I can forgo yet another dry recounting of my academic history and that the style of this essay need not be composed of the heavy cardboard rhetoric of the academic world. So, in summary, I will attempt to tell the reader something about myself, interests, and academic background in such a way as the reader might be able to determine why I'm an excellent research writer.
I'm sure it's not uncommon for people to declare their college experiences as a revelation. My case is no different and yet I would have to conclude that the most important things I learned in college, I learned outside of any classroom. For me, the most significant thing I learned existed between me and a mirror. As comprehension of my own capacities grew, widened, and deepened, I became conscious of the fact that I was not the person I once was. This could not have been more starkly portrayed than in my writing ability. Naturally, a student spends a large portion of their time simply writing. If a thousand monkeys with a thousand typewriters could possibly produce something of value, then surely a single student can emerge from a United States college with some facility to write in the English language.
I would have to conclude that the primary vocation of any college is to put themselves out of a job. Having completed an undergraduate degree and two graduate degree programs, I found myself armed to the teeth with the tools of learning and a positively voracious appetite for knowledge. To my surprise, working at a regular job provided me with something I hadn't seen in years: free time. I spent the next eight years indulging in many and varied interests. I studied Latin and discovered a previously unknown vocabulary for talking about language, particularly my own language of English. Naturally, we take our mother tongue for granted and never really require the need to talk about what it is we're actually trying to do when we use it. We just use it. This new found vocabulary was a revelation for me just as much as the study of physics had been several years previously. I further studied semantics, history, economics, psychology, social criticism, and others. Knowledge is a force of nature and if one would seek to apply this force to change the world, one must first change themselves. Change is often a painful process, but a necessary one.
So, what can be gained from 600 words at some poor reader's expense? Perhaps not much. However, dear reader, it can be hoped that you now know something about me you couldn't know from a close reading of my resume or my more technical writings. To write and to say one can write are two different things and it can also be hoped that I have drawn a sufficiently clear distinction by means of my little essay. An excellent research writer is first and foremost a writer. However, underlying that is the simple capacity to think, and think clearly about any given subject. As the world of ideas spreads out, ideas overlap and, before long, one finds that to write about any one subject is to write about any other subject and, ultimately, to write about life.
Random writer: /writer-jake