The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: May 1, 2015

The semester is rapidly coming to an end, with some ofWrite until it becomes as natural as breathing. you already finished. Have you given thought to your summer writing goals? Do you write more or less during the summer months? I love this quote, “Write until it becomes as natural as breathing. Write until not writing makes you anxious.” I’m not really sure if writing will ever feel as natural as breathing, no matter what amount of writing I do. However one thing is for sure: not writing does make me anxious. I have to get the thoughts out of my head and onto my computer screen (and sometimes paper). It’s like the throbbing pain in your knee, slightly annoying and always at the back of your mind. But, the only way to cure it is to keep moving, keep running, or it gets worse. Just like the only cure for that anxious feeling of not writing is to keep writing. I’m curious what you think: Is writing as natural as breathing for you? Does not writing make you anxious? And as always, happy writing! [Read more…]

The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: October 31, 2014

As promised, I’ve gathered a long list of You would rather pack book than clothes when you go on vacation.most useful posts for your must-read list this week. This week’s list is full of great writing tips and tools to help you move your writing project forward. Although only a month into this weekly series, I have to say these are some of my favorite and (hopefully) most useful posts yet. These are never in a particular order, just randomly placed, so make sure to read all the way to the bottom as they are no less important! Happy Halloween and, as always, happy writing! [Read more…]

How to efficiently blend multiple writing drafts

Q: “I find that I am forever writing different versions of the same thing, leaving me with the problem of collating them, or blending them together. It also wastes time, of course, to duplicate effort like that. Can you share some ideas for a more efficient process?”

A: Andrew P. Johnson, Ph.D., Professor of Holistic Education, Department of Special Education, Minnesota State University, Mankato:

“Words put order to chaos/thought. My process —

1. Start with draft in written form.

2. Put garbage on the page — Most people get stuck trying to get it perfect … At this stage you are a potter throwing a blob of clay on the wheel.

3. Then start shaping — take away — add.

Outlines are flexible ways to get you thinking ahead — However, trust your unconscious mind. Slow the mind. Focus on one sentence at a time. Then one paragraph at a time. Then one section at a time. Let other things leak out onto the page but focus just on the sentence, paragraph, section. The time to take a holistic sense of your article is when you are printing off a hard copy during the editing stage.”