Writing is, first and foremost, a human endeavor. It is an interactive and organic exercise. The best writing ideas come through discussion and the interplay of ideas. It is a conversation with other thinkers and writers who are perhaps trying to solve the same problem as you. Accomplished writers do not write in a vacuum, and they tend to seek advice and even criticism from their peers.
Think of a writer’s room in Hollywood where different writers are gathered together around a large conference table in front of a whiteboard. Ideas for an upcoming production are written down and concepts are submitted, negotiated, blended together, argued over, and eventually accepted or ruled out.
This type of interactivity is a process that young writers crave, and it’s a process that can be assisted with technology to a degree, but because the act of writing is such an organic endeavor, it cannot be digitally replicated or even digitally assisted in its entirety. Artificial intelligence, for example, is fantastic, and it has shown promise in terms of helping kids address issues of spelling, grammar, syntax and the overall organization of academic papers. What AI has fallen short on, however, is identifying conceptual depth, humor, figurative comparisons, subtleties, satire, nuance and shades of gray, all things that accomplished writers utilize as a matter of course, and which emerging writers should be learning and developing in school.
Essaypop is a technology. It is a digital platform. However, what makes the essaypop system different is that it leverages technology to facilitate the social, human and organic nature of writing and the writing process. The Hive feature organizes students into interactive clusters where conversations and connections can occur. It is a teacher-controlled environment that can be configured for any group, size or purpose. It allows students to receive multiple perspectives about their writing and provides an opportunity for students to crowdsource feedback, suggestions and advice.