How to Write a Paper

Every semester brings with it new requirements in the form of fat academic papers. Here is how I do most of my papers or reports. Here are a few tips on how to make writing that 10-500 something page essay a lot less tedious.

This is my most effective way of writing MY OWN papers. I’m also glad to say I’ve got nothing below a B when it comes to school paperwork. Article-wise, it takes a bit more creativity, but we’ll get to that in another post. The hardest part of writing anything is always the beginning, so let’s get that ball rolling.

How to write a report / essay / paper the easy way:

1. Brainstorm

  • The trick to this is writing down all the ideas you can about the topic before really thinking about structure. you can weed out the irrelevant things out later

2. Make a rough outline

  • Put down all your big ideas before worrying about the details.
    • exempli gratia
      • Introduction – What is Skateboarding
      • Body – History and Current Context
      • Conclusion

3. Go source hunting

  • Copy and paste relevant chunks of information into your outline, this helps you get all the subheadings you’re going to need to fill out that rough outline

4. Narrow down your data by ctrl+c and ctrl+v -ing your copypasta into their respective sections following your outline

5. Read everything once

  • re write these paragraphs and make them your own (don’t forget to cite your sources! link to how to cite sources)

6. Take a break

7. If a new idea comes to you, see where you can fit it in the outline

  • don’t get all anal yet, editing comes much later
  • re-read everything you have to check for some things you might have missed

8. You’ll have a cross between a sentence outline and a frankenstein of a body of data

9. Start making transitional paragraphs to tie in all your ideas

10. Check your sources again for their sources

  • most books/articles have references and indexes of sources they use. You can use these, too.

11. Read, edit, read and edit again. If you’re lazy, skip this part and get your roommate to do the editing.

  • check if you’ve cited your sources properly.

Now, if you’ve followed all these steps and you’re still a few pages short, try changing the font size of your periods. You do this by ctrl+f ing [ . ] and then replacing the original font size to two sizes bigger. You can also adjust the margins by a few millimeters.

This outline is most useful when you’re suffering from a major hangover and you need to submit a 3 page essay for a class in the next hour. Trust me, this has been tried and tested. Just do these things in order and don’t be anal until the last 20 minutes and you’ll be fine.


Posted on May 17, 2010, in How to, Writing and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. excellent work. some of your works are concise but comprehensive. very impressiveÜ

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