Meet the Newest Writing Center Editors: Basil and Dayna -->

Where instructors and editors talk writing.

Meet the Newest Writing Center Editors: Basil and Dayna

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The Writing Center welcomed four new staff members in 2014. Some are very new (welcome, Ellen!) and some have been around for a while. They kindly agreed to answer a few of my questions to share a little about them and their approach to writing. Today, we're featuring the newest dissertation editors, and later this week, we'll feature the newest writing instructors. If you're a Walden doctoral student, you may work with Basil and Dayna at a residency or in the Form & Style review. 

Dissertation Editor Basil Considine
Basil Considine, dissertation editor

How long have you been working at Walden?
I started [at Walden] in December 2013, right before the now infamous polar vortex descended upon the land.
What were you doing professionally before you started at Walden?
I worked at Boston University’s College of Arts & Sciences Writing Center before starting at Walden. I started tutoring people in writing as an undergraduate, and although I’ve had several main careers over the years it was always something that I continued as I got my master’s (in sacred music) and doctorate (in music and drama). 
What’s the best writing advice you were ever given?
Don’t state anything that you can’t support, but don’t be afraid to explore questions that you don’t know the answer for.
What’s your most memorable writing victory and why?
My most memorable writing victory was finishing my doctoral dissertation. I learned to speak new languages (Mauritian Kreol, Hindi), learned to read Dutch, and did library and archival research in four countries on five hundred years of history – and then distilled that down into a comprehensible and interesting-to-read dissertation in half a year of dedicated writing. It is my proudest writing accomplishment to date, but one that I look forward to eclipsing.
What’s something that has struck you about Walden or Walden students?
Walden students are incredibly varied, but it is a rare day when specific, targeted feedback isn’t well-received and taken to heart.
Describe your approach to writing in 3 words:
Clear communication matters.

Dissertation Editor Dayna Herrington
Dayna Herrington, dissertation editor

How long have you been working at Walden?
I started at Walden in March, 2014.
What were you doing professionally before you started at Walden?
I worked at Bowling Green State University as the Assistant Director of the ESOL (English to Speakers of Other Languages) Program and a lecturer in the English Department.
Could you talk about a particular writing challenge you faced and how you overcame that challenge?
I tend to be more of a recursive rather than a linear writer. When I sit down to write, I do not necessarily know what I’m going to say next or how I’m going to organize it. If I was assigned to write an outline for a given writing project and to turn it in before I completed a draft, I became completely stuck. I keep this lesson in mind. For some people, constructing an outline before beginning is a way to get them started, and it keeps the writing organized and clear. For others, it becomes a roadblock. It’s important to find a few strategies that work for you individually and be ok that not all of them will.
What do you find enjoyable about teaching or editing writing? 
Each time I read a piece of writing, I learn from it. I like having the opportunity to read about different fields of study and learn new ideas. I also like the feeling of helping students communicate clearly and efficiently and achieve their writing goals.
What’s one writing accessory you can’t live without?
A thesaurus.

Help us welcome Basil and Dayna to the Writing Center!

Beth Oyler

Beth Oyler,
 a writing instructor and the coordinator of webinar writing instruction at the Walden Writing Center, conducted this interview.

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1 comment :

  1. Alicia Mae HodnettAugust 5, 2014 at 1:06 PM

    As a doctoral student, I am so thankful for you all. I value advise while I am swimming in this ocean of literature. Basil, so you say "clear communication matters," thank you. I so often strive for clear concise communication. Dayna, I can honestly say I have not used my thesaurus. Thank you for shedding the light on another tool that I should be using. I am looking forward to working with you both.