Meet Alpha

Alpha Smith
UGA Undergraduate Student

What is your writing process?

I always begin my writing process by making a detailed outline. After forming a thesis, I structure how I want my arguments to flow and list sources that might complement one of my arguments well.

What do you enjoy about writing?

Honestly, I do not like creative writing because I get stuck at a certain point or things lose coherence. However, research or analysis papers suit me well. I love learning about something new as I am writing (or before I begin), and it motivates me to fluently convey what I learned and what steps I took along the way.

Based on your experience, what is the value of writing? Generally and in your classes?

I believe the experience of discovering something new—even if it’s only new to you—is valuable. Additionally, I feel the same in regards to those who end up reading it because they can share what they learned to someone else. The same is true in a classroom; we are all learning together and grow interested in specific topics that we can share with each other.

What does getting published in The Classic Journal mean to you?

Getting published in this issue of The Classic Journal is really important to me because it is my first time getting published. I feel like this is one big step towards realizing what I want to do with linguistics after I graduate. I am motivated to continue what I started.

What have you learned? How have you grown as a writer?

I have learned a lot about the writing process. Over the last three years, I have really been challenged by my professors when it comes to writing. Writing papers in a writing intensive course was amazing because of the detailed feedback you get with each paper. There is plenty of opportunity to learn from little grammatical errors, punctuation, word flow, and argument development. All the nitty gritty.

What would you like for other undergraduate students to know about publishing their work in The Classic?

Not to be afraid. I was pretty scared when I submitted my first draft because I wasn’t really confident in my writing. But the editing board offer a lot of constructive feedback that doesn’t put you down. I feel like giving it a try would be a good chance to grow as a writer and establish yourself in your major.

What’s up next for you writing-wise, school-wise, down the road?

My love for the Japanese language is as strong as ever and I’m doing some really interesting corpus linguistics research on Japanese word sentiment.