Study Notes for Students | Your Key to Effective Studying

Forge Ahead!

Just a few words here about getting started with the writing part. Some of you will freeze. Some of you will get very nervous and start to doubt your capabilities. Come on! You've already finished the hardest part! The important thing is to realize that you are not looking for or expecting perfection on the first draft. You are not out to impress anyone on the first draft. First drafts by definition stink! Always! So don't keep going back over things and editing your work you just wrote. Forge on. Your goal is to get something on paper from each of your cards working all the way through the detailed outline. If you just can't get a handle on a particular section after a few minutes, make yourself a note about what your topic is for that paragraph and go on to the next section. Don't ever get stopped into a hand-wringing forty-five minute stall. Move on and tackle the next section. Get through your draft.

If you get stuck and just can't get your brain to kick in and give you anything to put on the paper and you start wondering whether or not you should stop for awhile and maybe have a beer or two to loosen up, think about this. Think about your subject for a minute or two and then just start writing whatever comes to mind about it. Don't worry about order or organization; just write whatever comes to mind. Finish one thought and then start a new paragraph and write something else you remember about it. You may not use any of this, or you may print it out and look it over and see if there is any of it you want to save and use in an appropriate place as a part of your draft. This is generally referred to as brainstorming by professional writers. They use this trick when they are trying to get started on a writing assignment and can't decide how they want to start it. Another trick you might use if you are completely brain dead is to just start writing about anything; how blue your girl friends eyes are, how great your boy friend's rock band is, what you really want in a car. This trick is used to simply thaw out the brain and get it warmed up. It is usually referred to as free writing and once you do it for awhile you can stop and throw away whatever you wrote and try approaching your subject again.

Last Updated: 12/08/2014


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