The circumstances in which an author produces pieces of writing has a drastic influence on what they write, and how it is portrayed to their audience. The amount of familiarity the writer has with the medium they are using, and the location in which they are writing both majorly impact their pieces. One example showing the different effects of mediums are the documentaries of Clark and Bronowski on the relationship between ancient architecture and civilization. Both authors originally designed their work to be portrayed in the form of a film documentary, but they were later turned into texts. One main difference was the way the audience perceived their works from different mediums. In the film version, the author is able to talk and use outside influences (music, body language) which can evoke a certain tone and emotion from the audience. This may help to convince the viewer to agree with their point of view. They were also able to utilize location to show different components of the thesis. While Bronowski was reflecting on the creation of civilization, he was constantly in the presence of ancient buildings which was a constant reminder to the reader that he was connecting the two. In the text version, much of the content was about the history, so the connection to architecture may not have come across as clear as in the film. However, the text version also seems to be significantly less strenuous, as Bronowski died shortly after the making of the documentary because it was so intense This shows that creating a film such as that may have affected his ability to convey the information clearly because it was so tiring. In this case, the mediums mainly had an effect on how the audience connected with the material and the author.
On the other hand, Virginia Woolf reflects on the way in which circumstance affects the substance of writing, specifically for women producing fiction. Her central claim is that in order for a woman to write fiction effectively, she needs money and a room of her own. Throughout her essay Woolf creates many situations through imaginary characters to prove this argument. She shows that ideally, a person who is writing fiction should be able to have a clear mind and be free from bitterness and distraction. She coveys that if a person is constantly being distracted, in this case a woman distracted by societal expectations and duties, they are not able to coherently create and organize thoughts because they are constantly being interrupted. Woolf shows how the societal barrier of education prohibits women from being financially independent, which is why she feels they need a salary of five-hundred pounds a year– in order to free their mind from the worry of financial stress. In this essay, Woolf proves that the circumstances in which a person writes greatly affect their content of idea and organization.
Personally, I have found that the medium and circumstances in which I write both have a significant effect on what I write. Recently in our project on scalar, it was extremely difficult for me to figure out what I was trying to say because I was spending a lot of time trying to figure out how to work the program since I am not familiar with it. Also, I did not like that it forces you to exit from the text you are creating and go through several steps in order to import a picture. It caused me to lose my train of thought multiple times. Because I was not familiar with the medium, the mechanics of the program were almost like a distraction as Woolf would point out, which caused me to lose my idea and affected the overall content. It also took up a lot more of my time which caused me to be more tired and thoughts did not come as easily. On the other hand, when we wrote our project in word, it was a lot easier for me to get my thoughts down because I am very familiar with that medium. I know how the mechanics work and do not have to put much thought into it, so it does not distract me. This caused the content of my writing in word to be much better because I was able to focus on what I was writing and not on working the program.