May 2, 2007

CH1 Necessary Learning

Filed under: Creating, MiniNovel, publishing, TVC, Writing — techish @ 813 UTC

If I’m following the General/TOC information (see pages) then by this time the history of how I came to TVC has already been explained. This chapter addresses what I’ve taught myself and how, and more importantly it describes how I came to realize that I’d gone as far as I could on my own and that enrolling in college was the only logical next step.

The first meaty chapter may begin something like this:

Time by myself was just what I needed after leaving the Air Force, but almost two years alone in my little dry cabin with my two big dogs was enough. Therapy had progressed enough that I felt I could handle some exposure to people. I’d taught myself all I could using the Internet’s many avenues of information, using Netscape to create HTML pages and Photoshop to create images for the volunteer job I had with Grief Net. Grief Net is a Grief support site which I’d gotten involved with creating memorial images for individuals in memory of their recently lost loved ones. This had been very helpful to me personally as well, since I was still mourning the loss of my own children. But my images took up vast amounts of valuable hard storage space and they were extremely raw as art from a passionate novice often is. It was time to get professional instruction. I needed to know more about this machine I was working on so I didn’t have to call tech support every time I hit a snag in operations. I wanted to know more about the applications I was using and I wanted to learn how to build websites for real, not just images that resemble websites. I’d tapped out my knowledge base. I didn’t even know the questions to ask, let alone how or where to ask them.

But the idea of going back to school, at my age (32 at the time), terrified me. High School was hell. I was an awful student, and the idea of being back in classrooms with those who were smart enough to go to college right after high school, was enough to make me consider spending the rest of my life alone in that cabin. Alas, I knew that was not the answer.

The rest of the chapter talks of how I decided on TVC after speaking to an advisor on main campus. Before I even had to face classes on The Hill I knew that was the place for me to begin my education. It goes on to speak of my first meetings with the director of the program, my need to be upfront with those first instructors, and how someone who is bipolar and suffering from sever panic attacks with agoraphobia comes to the decision to dive into the deep end, head first, by registering for full time classes right out of the gates. At the time, I knew that baptism by fire was the only way to go for me.

This first chapter is much more about the how, why, and who that in is about any of the classes I took. That semester was truly the single most important in the nine years I’ve been attending.


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