Hello! Welcome back to another Scholastic Monday! We’re almost at the middle of the month where I’m sure you have your weekly assignments, maybe post on the class blog, and papers. The one assignment that makes up most of your college career. It’s something I had to get used to when I first started. While writing doesn’t tire me out and English is my all time favorite subject, having to constantly write papers over and over did wear me out after a while. I became burnt out looking up information, burnt out staying up late at night trying to work on three pages, and there were times I didn’t feel like doing anything.
However, I can tell you that there are little tricks to writing essay even if you don’t like writing. Here are the ones that I use when I feel the dread of writing an essay.
- Organize your information
When you have a research essay and one of the requirements is to find a bunch of sources, it can be overwhelming trying to find the right pieces of information that will fit the essay. One of the tricks I’ve used is to take any important piece of information from one of your sources and write it down on a separate sheet of paper. Organize the important quotes from each source, make sure you mark down the page number that will come in handy, and a passage from the source. That way when you get to part where you have to quote that book or article that you need for the essay the passage you need will already be there. You won’t have to go look for it either which will save you some time.
- Write your work cited page first
When I write my essays one of the things I forget to do is the work cited page. After working so hard in trying to get the words down writing the work cited page always feel more of a hassle than it should. However, I found that if I work on my work cited page first then that’s one thing I don’t have to do when I’m finished. It can be printed out along with my essay and it becomes one last thing I don’t have to worry about. Everyone has their methods, but I found that this one works for me.
- Write out the topic or theme you want to focus on
Whenever I have to an essay I write out a bunch of themes from the piece I read. I write out all the themes that works then the themes where I don’t think will work, I still write them down. Once everything is down on paper it can make it easy to pick and choose which topics to use and which to toss aside. For me having a topic I know I’ll be able to focus on helps keep my anxiety down. There’s nothing worse than having an essay due and you don’t know where to start and that blank cursor is staring at you. A list is easier to narrow down the idea you want to focus on. It can also give you a backup when your professor wants to see your topic. If they don’t like the first one then you have others to choose from which helps.
Everyone has their own different ways that they write, so you can pick and choose which things you want to use or not. These three things helped me when my anxiety hit the roof and the thought of writing a paper nearly pushed me into having an attack. Knowing there’s something in front of me that I can change and control, helps me and keeps my anxiety down.
If these helps that’s great, if not I would love to know your tips on writing papers because it’s not a very exciting thing to do once you’re in college.
Have a nice week!
This week Paul the study ghost has some links that can help you!
Purdue OWL Writing Lab: This is a good reference site when you need to brush up on some skills. It shows you how to write in MLA and APA format, not to mention grammar things too.
Son of Citation Machine: This website is a life saver! All you have to do is put your information in the generator and it organize it into a MLA entry for you to put in your work cited page! It saves you tons of time and I love this site.
OWL Purdue Youtube channel: This has very helpful videos for papers, paper writing, and everything you’ll need to help you write your essay.
A helpful article on writing anxiety: It’s from The Writing Center and it gives you tips on how to overcome writing anxiety that can happen a lot during college. One little thing they didn’t tell you in high school.
He also says “Good luck in your essays!”