Writing is one of those tasks that when youâ€™re faced with it, you either love it or hate it. And yet no matter where you are in life, writing will likely somehow be demanded of you whether it be for a homework assignment, work project, or even a letter to your landlord. Writing is an important tool and if you see it as a dreadful task, then this article is for you. Here are some tips for overcoming your objections to writing:
Excuse #1: Writing is boring
Is it? Or is the topic about which youâ€™re writing boring? If itâ€™s the dull part youâ€™re worried about, then all you need to do is make the topic fun. Writing comes easier to you when youâ€™re passionate and knowledgeable about the topic. Try writing about something you like to get warmed up. Chances are your assignment isnâ€™t always going to be something youâ€™re gung-ho about, but it is probably something you know a little about. Whatever you are asked to write, do some research on it first. Once you feed your brain all of this information, your mind will start to form its own opinion and interpretation of the information. As you start making these connections, take notes: about how you feel about the topic, why you feel that way, what you discovered as part of your research, and why all of these lead you to a conclusion.
Once your mind is filled with these thoughts, opinions, ideas, thatâ€™s when youâ€™re prime to jot it all down. Donâ€™t worry about spelling, pay no attention to grammar, and just write.
Excuse #2: I donâ€™t have that much to say
Ever hear that old joke: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. Well, writing is a little bit like that. Sure, upon learning thatÂ your assignment is a 1,000 word double-spaced document, it might send shivers down your spine, but like the parable says, just do it in bite-sized pieces. Start with your pre-write. Write everything you know and feel about the topic right off the bat. If you feel nothing or care nothing about the topic, then you havenâ€™t researched it enough. In the pre-writing stage, you essentially outline what it is you are going to say in your paper. If your paper is on finding a solution for the over-population of dogs, a feasible outline might look like this:
Intro: State that many dogs are without a home, provide statistics.
Discuss possible solutions and why they might work.
- Promote dog adoption more aggressively, include celebrity endorsements, commercials, and radio ads.
- Free neutering/spaying for stray dogs. Discuss who might fund this and why it would benefit the community at large.
- Suggest stronger laws be applied to puppy mills who sell puppies
Each of these can be their own paragraphs. Just elaborate on the idea. Tell the reader more about promoting dog adoption: the various ways it can be done, whose campaigns have worked in the past, which approach you wish to take, or why this could benefit the cause. There are so many ideas wrapped up in each bullet point you make that you could easily continue the discussion.
Excuse #3: Itâ€™s too complicated
Writing does not have to be complicated; itâ€™s merely a conversation on paper. What would you say if you were talking? Jot down your main points. Anticipate a rebuttal to your points, write down another statement you might make. Writing only becomes complicated when you start judging your mechanics or delivery. Donâ€™t worry about those, focus on your ideas and keep them flowing. As you start re-reading your notes, and adding more ideas, your paper will begin to take shape, youâ€™ll see what youâ€™re trying to say and start to put it in a logical order. Read it again. Fill in the gaps where more information could make your point stronger. Take away sentences that donâ€™t add anything new to the conversation or that are redundant.
After youâ€™ve got a pretty solid argument in a lengthy amount of words, then (and only then) can you go back to fix the errors. Spell-check it, make sure proper nouns are capitalized and that you didnâ€™t end a sentence without a punctuation mark. If you think you could use a better word than the one you used, grab a thesaurus and find more effective language. At this point, you should be done adding ideas, so donâ€™t reorganize your information; just go in for a clean-up.
Writers, especially the really good professional writers, always re-write, fix errors and make their papers, books, and articles better. No one naturally spits out a shiny, award-winning anything without having to re-think and fix their own errors. And though you may not want to be a professional writer for your career, itâ€™s important that you know that writing is a process for everyone, even those who do it for a living. So donâ€™t feel discouraged if you find writing challenging.