Writing Strategies

Skill writers know the process of writing involves rethinking and rewriting. One can produce a good work after he or she revises several times. If you want to become a better writer, you need to take this advice: revise, revise and revise. Don’t’ tend to seek a fast resolution by skipping this stage. Moreover, you cannot revise the paper well if you finish it at the eleventh hour. Allow your ideas to develop and go through it several times. Test your ideas and take advice from trusted friends and advisors. Plan your time for revising the work once you are satisfied with what you have written.

Keep your eyes focused on the big picture when you revise your work. Don’t ever to fix the errors. If you start searching the errors early in the process, it is hard for you to get back to the larger concerns- whether your argument is successful or not.

Develop effective strategies for revising.

These strategies like below:

1. Keep your goals in mind but also stay flexible about them

People can give effective arguments when they know what they want to achieve, understand their readers’ needs, and keep their goals in mind as they write and revise. Before giving your final version, rethink your goals. You may make a better argument if you leave yourself open to adjustments in what you are arguing and to whom you are arguing it.

2. Read as you write

Read widely about the subject before going further if you have not explored your topic thoroughly. You may identify the opposite views along the way you read. Arguing is always more a contribution to a continuing conversation instead of a final resolution of all doubts. Furthermore, you can do far more good by persuading others to cooperate with you than fervently opposing them.

3. Take the readers’ perspectives

Mostly your first draft makes sense to you without thinking about readers. However, the first draft is only the beginning. You need to take time to think about how your arguments will impress you readers. You can pretend to be someone who don’t know the subject or who hold an opposing viewpoint, then read your argument aloud.

Getting the overall sense of how well of the arguments instead of catching the errors. * The area you need to examine:

a. Your claim

Can you summarise in one sentence what you are arguing when you finish reading? What is at stake in your claim? Who benefits by what you are arguing? Who doesn’t? Even all would agree with your claim, you need to identify an aspect on which people would disagree and restate your claim.

b. Your good reasons

What evidence is given to support these good reasons and how are they relevant to the claim? (Keep the word ‘so what’ in your mind!)

c. Your representation of yourself

Forgot you are the writer for a moment, then examine is the writer believable or trustworthy? Has the writers done his homework on the particular issue? Does the writer take an appropriate tone? Note any places you can strengthen your credibility as a writer

d. Your consideration of your readers

Do you give sufficient background of the issue? Do you acknowledge opposing views they might have? Do you appeal to common values that you share with them? Note any places where you might do more to address the concerns of your readers.

4. Focus on your argument

a. Find you main claim

b. How will you support your claim?

What good reasons will you use? Will you use definitions, an evaluation, a causal argument, a list of consequences, a comparison or contrast, or a combination of these? All these good reasons will establish a complete and satisfactory argument.

c. Analyse your organization

Certain guides will help you to determine what kind of overall organization you need. For example, if you use a definition arguments. You should be able to identify the criteria for your definition. How many criteria do you offer? Are they clearly connected to your claim? What order should they be used?

You can also use other effective ordering principles, namely, strongest good reason early and repeat them at the end; least important to most important; group into similar ideas; from most familiar to least familiar; and least controversial to most controversial)

d. Examine your evidence

Determine what kinds of additional evidence you need. It can be examples, personal experiences, comparisons, statistics, calculations, quotations, and other relevant data. Decide what you need and put it in.

e. Consider your title and introduction

A good title makes the reader want to read your work. Be as specific as you can in your title and suggest your stance (if possible). You may need to tell the problem and some background. Keep your readers for reading your work.

f. Consider your conclusion

Summarise the point, draw an implication or conclude your position.

If you are writing a proposal, you should end with a call for action. It would make an effective clincher if you quote some validate source.

g. Analyse the visual aspects of your text

Do you use the same font throughout? Would heading and subheadings help to identify key sections of your argument? Is it effective for you to use statistical data, charts or other illustrations?

5. Attend to your style and proofread carefully

a. Check the connections between sentences

Use a transitional marker if you want to signal the relationship from one sentence to the next. For example, moreover (additive), however (concessive) and so on.

b. check your sentences for emphasis

In a conversation, people usually emphasise their points by speaking louder, using gestures and repeating themselves. It is the same to the case of writing.

  • Things in main clauses tend to stand out more than things in subordinates clauses

Signal what you want to emphasise by putting it into main clauses, and put less important information in subordinate clause or modifying phrases. For example:

Before he organised a counterfeiting ring, Kroger studied printing in Germany.

If two things are equally important, you can signal it by using coordination. For example,

Kroger studied printing in Germany; he later organised a counterfeiting ring.

  •  Things at the beginning and the end of sentences tend to stand out more than things in the middle
  •  Use punctuation for emphasis

Dashes add emphasis but parentheses de-emphasise ( { }, [ ], () )

For example:

Kroger- who studied printing in Germany- organised a counterfeiting ring.

c. Eliminate wordiness

You can find long expression that can easily be shortened when you revise. For example:

At this point in time – ‘now ’

Avoid unnecessary repetition of words or sentence. Try to take out the words without losing the meaning.

d. Use active verbs

Can use a verb besides be form (is, are, was, and were). Simplify the sentence with ‘There is’ and “It is”.

It is true that exercising a high degree of quality control in the manufacture of our products will be an incentive for increasing our market share.

>If we pay attention to quality when we make our products, more people will buy them.

e. Know what your spelling checker can and can’t do

Spelling checkers do not catch wrong words (e.g., “to much” should be “too much”), incorrect word endings (equipments should be „ equipment’). You still need to eliminate misspellings and word choice errors.

f. Use your handbook to check items of mechanics and usage

The conventions of punctuation, mechanics, and usage aren’t’ that difficult to master once you know the rules. If you notice that a sentence is hard to read aloud, think about how you may rephrase it. If a sentence is too long, you can break it into two or more sentences. If you notice a string of short sentences that sound choppy, you may combine them. If you notice and run-on sentences or sentence fragments, fix them.

Finally, get help on your draft. Don’t solely trust your own ears or eyes. Most good writers let trusted advisors or friends to read what the write before the y share it with their audience. A good reviewer is one who is willing to give you her time and honest opinion, and who knows enough about the subject of your paper to make useful suggestions. Normally, a close friend will be reluctant to give negative evaluations. Perhaps you can develop a relationship with people whom you can share drafts- you read theirs; they read yours. You need not take every piece of advice you get, but you do need to consider suggestions with an open mind.


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