Ellen Fraser

Major(s), Concentration(s): English (Professional Writing and Rhetoric) Art History
Minor(s): Spanish
Year at Elon: Junior

1. Other than class assignments, what kinds of things do you write or have you written?
During Summer 2012, I did an internship with a non-profit organization in my hometown of Columbus, Ohio.  During my internship, I wrote for their blog, wrote articles for their weekly newsletter, and developed their social media marketing strategy.  The main pieces that I produced were a written social media marketing strategy for my boss and a platform management directions document for future interns.  I also was a guest blogger last summer for CUPID (Center for Undergraduate Publishing and Information Design) at Elon.

2. What piece of writing are you most proud of?
My social media strategy is the piece of writing that I am most proud of because I knew nothing about social media marketing prior to my internship, so all of the information that I used to create it was completely self-taught.  It was also the first significant piece of writing that I produced outside of an academic setting for an actual purpose other than for a professor to read.

3. Where is your favorite place to write?
Either Belk Library in a study cubby on the second floor, or my bed.

4. Do you have any interesting quirks and/or routines you follow when writing or when you are preparing to write? What are they?
I have to be wearing my Bose noise-cancelling headphones.  I also am dramatically against procrastination, so I outline early. I make an outline that consists of my thesis statement written completely, then Roman numerals for each of the body topics. I usually write the conclusion after I am completely finished with everything else. I am also a big fan of creative titles, which I usually choose somewhere in the middle of my writing process.

5. Who is your favorite writer? Why?
I read a lot of fiction, so I think the mark of a good writer is his understanding of the human condition and therefore, his ability to develop characters that readers can relate to.  Honestly, I don't know that many people would agree with me, but I have never read a Shakespeare play that I didn't enjoy. I love the challenge, and I think his understanding of the human condition is remarkable.  Especially because he was the first one to introduce such universal themes that have persisted in pop culture to this day.

6. What was the best writing experience of your life?
I was on a writing team in middle school called Power of the Pen, and our coach would always tell us at practice to free write.  Even if you didn't know what to write about, she would always tell us to write, "I don't know what to write" until we thought of something because she said the physical act of writing would get our creative juices flowing.  I don't do much creative writing now, but even to this day this is a strategy I use to get started on any piece of writing.

7. What would you most like to improve about your writing?
I hope to be less grammatically and verbally strict and develop more of my own voice as a writer.

8. What advice do you have for other Elon writers?
My advice for other Elon writers is to WRITE! Even if you are not an English or Communications major, write!  Good writing is so essential for every profession.  Also, writing can help you release pent-up feelings you may never knew you had.  Even if it is just journaling or keeping a blog, writing provides a creative outlet.

9. What else (if anything) would you like to say?
I just want to say that there is a reason that Elon picked Excellence in Writing as one of their QEP program choices.  As mentioned before, writing well is essential for every profession, and being a good writer can really make you stand out as a possible candidate for a job, which I know as college students is something we are all concerned with.