Ursula Le Guin’s Writing Style

Adding extra details to our language can help us make a story more an experience and the readers the experiencers.

Ursula Le Guin’s writing style is descriptive but not always concise. She will sometimes waste time explaining unnecessary details. Although, the details do make you feel more connected to the story. This does add some importance to the details and is shown by the sentence, “He sat still while his aunt bound back her uncombed hair, and knotted the belt of her dress, and again sat cross-legged throwing handfuls of leaves into the fire pit, so that a smoke spread and filled the darkness of the hut,”(5). For only one sentence, that has many details, and does a fantastic job at placing you into the scene. Without the unnecessary details, the sentence would be more like, He sat still while his aunt threw leaves into the fire, so that smoke filled the hut. This sentence is a lot shorter, and still explains the same story, but lacks the ‘expanded moment’ tool that Ursula Le Guin masters. I’m reading the shorter sentence, but experiencing the original. These descripted expanded moments are shown all through the first and second chapter of Ursula Le Guin’s A Wizard of Earthsea.

Leadership Principals

Principal 1: Lighten your leader’s load.

I chose this principal because this also means to go beyond the call of duty. I believe doing more than what you’re asked to do is one of the most important parts of leadership. If you only do what you’re asked, you’re a follower. If you do more than what you’re asked, you’re a leader capable of making your own choices. This is important for TALONS because in committee work, you don’t want to be constantly giving others small tasks. We are all our own leaders in TALONS and should be autonomous enough to seek out jobs before others give them to us.


Principal 2: Be better tomorrow than you are today.

This principal is fundamental for leadership because it means to always be improving. As a leader we must learn from our mistakes, listen to others criticism and focus on improving our weaknesses to move up in this world. In TALONS, our main goal is to learn, and improving yourself is a form of learning. This is why we do so much planning within TALONS, to improve ourselves.


Principal 3: Be a friend.


Being a friend and having friends are essential parts of life, in my opinion. The way that I make people respect and listen to me, since I’m don’t have an aggressive personality, is to be a friend for them. If a friend asks me to do a task, my main motivation is just the thought of helping my friend out when they are in need. This principal is very important for TALONS because our class is more than just a gifted/leadership class, it’s another family to me. One of the motivations I had to join TALONS is the new friends I would meet. In committee work, I find it a lot more enjoyable and easier to work with my friends.


Principal 4: Let the best idea win.


I chose this principal because this is the reason why group work can be very successful. If you work with other people, there is a chance that someone will have a better idea or solution to a problem than you. If you let this idea flourish, then your product will be better than what it would have been if only you worked on it. Letting other people’s ideas win will also let you learn from these ideas, and if your idea is the winning idea, then you have the chance to teach others. This is important for TALONS because we do a lot of group work. If we don’t let the best idea win, then the group work will lose a lot of what makes it effective.

Principal 5: Place people in their strength zones.

This is an important principal to keep in mind as a leader because it’s how a leader can get the most out of their followers. Also, your followers will be more motivated to work if they like what their doing. Usually, your strength zone is also a zone in which you like to work. This is important for TALONS because we all know each other’s strength zone (at least with all the grade 10s), so why not utilize this information?

Principal 6: Model the behavior you desire.

This Principal is important because role-modeling is what makes people look up to you. If you make everyone that follows you very professional, but then you start acting silly, people will lose respect for you. This makes them harder to lead since they stop taking what you tell them seriously. This relates to TALONS because the 10s are always trying to be good role models for the 9s. The 9s are meant to look up to us, and we are supposed to mentor them. The best way to teach them is to show them what being a good TALON looks like.

When people pretend to be something they’re not, they lose their identity

I strongly agree with this statement. Identity, in my view, is how others perceive you. If you take on another personality purposefully, then your personal identity changes. Changing away from yourself on purpose is losing your identity. We are born with our identities, and they can grow, but this happens naturally. Natural growth of your identity does mean change, but in the end you’re not pretending to be something, rather your personal identity changes but is still who you are. When you decide to change yourself into something your not, that’s not natural, and means that you are pretending to be something you’re not. We may not like who we are, but we can only let ourselves grow, we can’t change ourselves in short periods of time.

Wise Nugs

  1. It is almost never too late to change your path in life.
  2. Grades matter, but how you prove your grades matters more. (doing projects and such)
  3.  Growing with technological change can often open up new opportunities / paths in life.