2014 Letter from the Editors

Delta Winds cover 2014Delta Winds: A Magazine of Student Essays
A Publication of San Joaquin Delta College


Letter from the Editors

While we generally read what has been written, we do have occasion to experience script through other means. At San Joaquin Delta College, students published in Artifact, Final Draft, and Delta Winds share their works in an oral reading called "Writing All Over the Place." This event, for some, is the first time hearing an author speak and feeling the author's emotional connection to the words. The experience has the potential to carry a powerful message. Students in an English 87 class attended last year's "Writing All Over the Place" and offered these insights:

Derekia Davis: "I was really moved by the young lady and her story about her mother. I remember reading this particular story in class, and it was a touching story then. But sitting there at that moment, listening to her story and the pain she had behind it was more moving than the whole class reading it aloud. We could never put the heart behind it like she did because she's walking in the shoes whereas we were just reading about her life."

Danh Nguyen: "Delta Winds readers shared touching stories. Adrianne Silver told us that she picked up the idea for her essay after seeing the name of a suicide teenager who was a victim of bullying. The event made me change the way I look at writing. I believe that all the works are rooted in emotion. There were so many students we did not have enough seats for them."

Jerry Vang: "I could imagine the pictures of the poems and the essays that were read. I could understand the stories like I was in the stories. This emotion makes me think that I should study harder and practice to write and read in the way these writers did. This experience will become part of my knowledge and will help me to become a better writer and reader in the future."

Salwa Sanany: "I liked how one girl read the poem, acted it out, and made funny sounds. It was the first time I listened to very interesting poems that actually made me laugh."

Nga Pham: "In 'Small Asian Woman,' Kelly Pheng hurt her mom's feelings and blamed her mom a lot. But today, she read a new essay to apologize to her mom for what she had done. She was crying and speaking to us. She made me cry too. She made me think about my life, my family through her story. I also should say, 'Thanks a lot' to my mom for still supporting me to go to school and to have something brighter than her."

Juanito Sanchez: "I realized that writing is not just a form of communication, but a unique way for us humans to express our feelings and thoughts. This has encouraged me to continue developing new ways of improving my reading skills. This experience made me realize all the things that I have taken for granted. So from now on, I will take advantage of all the opportunities presented to me."

Antonio Gomez: "As soon as they started to read their poetry or stories, they caught my attention. When the first reader began, I was frozen by how amazing she expressed herself. It was beautiful how she paused and how she raised her voice. After some good experiences with poems, we took our journey to the stories, stories in which some readers let out their feelings and began to cry. While they were reading their touching stories, I was getting more involved because in some way I had passed through those same experiences. This event was a good example of what we can do with our writing."

By late spring of 2013, the students in English 87 had read numerous essays in Delta Winds over the course of the semester. They had written summaries of Delta Winds essays and had written responses to these essays as they prepared for their next level of composition classes. However, they had never experienced writing as they did that day in Goleman Library. Many students were profoundly impacted by hearing authors read their essays aloud.

We wish to thank our colleague Paula Sheil for coordinating this event. Her efforts allowed our students to experience the written word in a more personal way, to feel the power, depth, potential, and beauty of language, by witnessing the strong bond between the writing and the writer.