Forum 3: Writing Process
In this forum you will reflect on your own writing process, explain where you tend to get stuck, and share strategies for moving forward.
? How do you get started organizing your thoughts and drafting? Where do you tend to get stuck in your writing process? Reflecting on any writing that you’ve done recently, did you try a strategy you haven’t tried before? What did you think of the experience?
? Post a brief (250 words or fewer) response in this forum.
? Respond substantively to the postings of at least two of your peers (which I post below), giving advice for getting unstuck, noting any approaches you have in common, or providing other tips or suggestions that help move the dialogue forward. A one-paragraph peer response is sufficient.
1. When writing my first draft of a paper, I usually start with a thesis statement and base everything else around that. My thesis includes the topics for the body paragraphs, so I have my structure of my paper right away. This gives me a clear outline for my paper. I usually get stuck when I try to organize the paper. I feel like my ideas tend to blend together, making it hard to have a lengthy paper that isn’t me repeating myself over and over. I also feel like it can be difficult to make my ideas come out clearly on paper.
A strategy I have tried recently is just writing a bunch of notes on my paper that have to do with the question or topic of the paper. I try not to think about it too much and just write whatever comes to mind. Usually when I am typing, I find myself starting to write out paragraphs instead of just sentences and get on a roll as ideas pop into my head. This helps me find a thesis statement and other topics that I can talk about within my document. I find this easier than having to start a paper from scratch right away. It helps me start the process of thinking about the topic but not having the pressure of having clear and thought out ideas.
2. I usually get started making an outline. I copy paste the rubric into my document and start breaking the writing piece down into different sections I want to include with overviews of what I am initially thinking for that section. If I am unsure of my focus, I have made mind maps in more recent years. This has helped get my ideas initially flowing. Before I used to utilize this method, I would simply make lists of all of the thoughts I have, want to explore, and/or am thinking of including. I then just start writing. I utilize this as a thinking exercise as well. Even if I am kind of confused about my direction, once I start getting stuff on paper, I develop my ideas. I just keep going back, iterating and editing. I think sometimes the most difficult part can be getting started motivation-wise. Once I get into the thick of it though, I typically bang out writing assignments pretty quickly. I’ve found it also helps to come back to a draft with fresh eyes later that night or the next day after a good night’s sleep. This can help ensure your cohesion, organization, and focus are all on point. Reading drafts out loud also help me when proofreading.