Wishes for the New Year

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As the new year approaches (just two more days!), I am thinking of teachers of writing, of all our students, and of the world we inhabit. In my long life, I can remember some very fraught ends-of-years, but perhaps none as perilous as this one. The ongoing deadly pandemic. Social chaos. Factionalism and extremism on the rise. Threats to democracy from within. An inability, or refusal, to distinguish facts and truth from misinformation, crippling conspiracy theories, and lies. A planet teetering on the brink.

And yet. We are still here. We are still teaching. We are still helping students learn to think and act for themselves—and for others. We are still creating small acts of kindness, small pockets of hope, small gestures of grace every single day.

Resilience. Persistence. Perseverance. What my granny called Stick-to-it-ivity. We have all that, and more.

So here’s to you and yours, with wishes for good fun, good food, and good friendship in the new year, along with safety and good health. And most of all, happy teaching.


Image Credit: "Fireworks, New Years Eve, V&A Waterfront" by Derek Keats, used under a CC BY 2.0 license

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About the Author
Andrea A. Lunsford is the former director of the Program in Writing and Rhetoric at Stanford University and teaches at the Bread Loaf School of English. A past chair of CCCC, she has won the major publication awards in both the CCCC and MLA. For Bedford/St. Martin's, she is the author of The St. Martin's Handbook, The Everyday Writer and EasyWriter; The Presence of Others and Everything's an Argument with John Ruszkiewicz; and Everything's an Argument with Readings with John Ruszkiewicz and Keith Walters. She has never met a student she didn’t like—and she is excited about the possibilities for writers in the “literacy revolution” brought about by today’s technology. In addition to Andrea’s regular blog posts inspired by her teaching, reading, and traveling, her “Multimodal Mondays” posts offer ideas for introducing low-stakes multimodal assignments to the composition classroom.