I wrote a Paper Writing Method: Grad. School Edition post a while back, and while much of that is still true, I’ve discovered a new method for the actual writing part. In writing classes, you learn all of these “proper” and “organized” methods of writing papers. But honestly, those methods don’t really do it for me. I mean, they’re great for freshmen, but I’ve never written like that… not even as a freshman. The methods they teach in the text books are all about pre-writing, writing, editing, revising, and repeating the whole process. Kind of boring.
I prefer to write like an ADD squirrel on coffee.
I’m currently writing a paper about the influence of inkhorn terms on the vocabulary of sixteenth century English. Sounds about as interesting as mud, right? It’s actually about as interesting as clay. The distinction is subtle, I know, but clay is more malleable and a bit more interesting. Anyway, that’s beside the point. What was the point? I forgot. Something about methods. Writing methods. Ah! ADD squirrel on coffee. Right. So, sometimes, when you’re writing a paper, it’s a good idea to write the body paragraphs first and then your introduction and conclusion. And that’s how I usually do it. Well, this has been my process so far:
1) Attempt to write body paragraph #1. Realize you have no outline and therefore don’t know what you’re writing about in body paragraph #1.
2. Write an outline. Realize you have no thesis and have no idea what your points are supposed to be.
c – figure out some crude thesis.
Four. From your thesis, establish the direction of your paper in the form of a crude outline. Mostly just random ideas in some kind of an order (eg., “Something about balance,” yes, that was actually my third point at some point in this process).
5 – Return to step #1.
11) Get bored of body paragraph #1 and decide to work on the introduction.
3. Two sentences in to the introduction, decide that that’s not interesting enough, and since you’ll need to get some form of reasonable sentences for topic sentences at some point, why not do that now?
42 – Might as well do something for the conclusion too.
522) It’s possible that you now have all of your paragraphs now. Two sentences each. Just keep going through and develop each as it interests you until you’ve used up all of your material and/or finish the paper.
11526: Go blog about it.
And now back to paper writing…
Hmm.. maybe I need a nap.
Some day I’ll tell you about that time when I was writing a paper about Chaucer’s The Knight’s Tale and the paragraph I had written for body paragraph #1 turned out being better suited as an introduction to a completely different paper.