Part One and done (kind of.) 30,000 words later

I’d like to start this post by addressing some great questions I got in my last entry about decisions I made regarding the trip and the construction of the piece.

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Creative Writing Narrative- the beginning

 

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Plans delayed, adjustments made (and bad rhymes too, apparently.)

A little over a week ago I got a call from the doctor’s office confirming that I have mono, and that I should a take a month off “all physical activity.” My brother and I had planned to go start our backpacking trip this weekend, so this called for some adjustments in our scheduled plans. We shifted the trip to July and unfortunately lost some good training time- even though we have an extra month, an extra month that I am not allowed to move is not particularly conducive to training. Before I got sick, we had taken a short training trip up to Dragon’s Tooth (http://www.hikingupward.com/JNF/DragonsTooth/), an trail that branches off the Appalachian Trail. There we got a good idea of how to make dinner (bean mush is surprisingly good after hours of hiking), set everything up in the rain, and generally become comfortable doing things for ourselves.

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Examining important elements of the non-fiction narrative on the Appalachian Trail

For my research project I will be spending eight days hiking the 72 miles of Appalachian Trail (AT) that runs through Smokey Mountain National Park with my brother and writing a creative non-fiction narrative as I go. I will spend between one and three weeks after the trip typing out and combining the pieces I write on the trail into a single cohesive narrative that is between 20,000 and 30,000 words in length.  By completing the process of sorting through many samples of my writing and deciding what to include in my final narrative, I hope to discover what elements of a nonfiction personal narrative make it relevant and interesting to a reader. Since the story centers around the author, it is especially important to discern what distinguishes a successful piece that engages the reader from a piece that is only of interest to its author. My goal for the piece is that people won’t just be reading about the adventure I took, but also sharing in it.