Literacy Sponsorship at the juncture of Brandt and Lamott

Question: What evidence of literacy sponsorship, as Brandt defines it, is evident in Lamott’s chapter?

Lamott, in the last few pages of her Shitty First Drafts piece, discusses how it’s imperative to find the right person to bounce ideas off of, the right person to go to for criticism. This relates back to Brandt’s sponsorship because it’s essentially asking a friend or colleague to help in the process of making a piece of writing better (I’m not going to say amelioration in this post, even though it’s my go-to favorite vocab word).

Brandt says sponsors “lend their resources or credibility to the sponsored but also stand to gain benefits from their success, whether by direct repayment or, indirectly, by credit of association” (page 167).

She continues, “sponsors deliver the ideological freight that must be borne for access to what they have” (page 168).

Lamott feels as though finding a partner to discuss writing with is a key component of the drafting and overall writing process. It boils down to working with one another, lending a hand, etc:

“if you know for sure that some smart and civilized person loves your work, you can ask that person if she would be willing to look at a part of your novel or your latest short story. If this person writes, too, ask if she would like you to take a look at her draft” (page 12).

In that sense, sponsorship is reciprocal/mutual.


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