Writing well, by hand, is one of the keys to a satisfying life and a healthy mind. Writing by hand and
then publishing digitally on platforms like Medium is the perfect combination. You get the tactical feedback and ability to write things down manually, and then decide what parts of it you should publish into the digital ocean.
7 little known secrets from world class writers.
- The best writers fight to master themselves
If you’re going to write, rule over yourself. Nobody is perfect at it, but the writers who are even modestly successful at ruling over themselves are the ones that dominate the industry.
2. The best writers are the ones that read the best books
Read a lot. Reading really helps. Read anything you can get your hands on. –JK Rowling
If you don’t like to read, you haven’t found the right book. –JK Rowling
3. The best writers are those that get direct experience in the REAL world
Seek out new adventures and experiences. Get direct experience without the digital filter of your smartphone, friends, or anyone else. Get lost in nature, and you’ll be forced to come face to face with new ideas.
4. The best writers write, every single day
You can’t writer hundreds of novels unless you write, every single day.
5. The best writers aren’t afraid of showing their emotions
No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. –Robert Frost
6. The best writers write what society and culture hates
You have to write the book that wants to be written. And if the book will be too difficult for grown-ups, then you write it for children. –Madeleine L’engle
7. The best writers don’t have formal education in writing
The writers who get more “education” before they write end up creating books that resonate with those who have had the most education. Education, if left to it’s own devices, becomes the practice of first limiting, and then policing the imagination.
The best writers do not police their imaginations. They do practice prudence, and they do censor themselves sometimes when they publish work publicly. But this doesn’t mean that they don’t hide esoteric ideas inside exoteric stories.
In conclusion, the best writers…
- Master themselves
- Read the best books
- Write every day
- Aren’t afraid of showing emotions
- Write what society hates
- Don’t have formal education
Tips for Writing your PhD Thesis
- It is a long road but you are near the end. Keep the motivation up! Before you start wringing. Read 50 papers on your research. It will help with your hypothesis and the 100+ you have to read.
- Materials is the methods. Starting with materials & methods will set out a road map for your PhD & help you get over the initial writing humps.
- Collate your figures and write your legends. Make sure you have no holes in your data, and your figure legends are correct.
- Take a planned break. Unless you are a robot, you will not be 100%efficient all the time. Working toward the break will help you to maintain focus.
- Social Media. Set the specific time for checking emails and social media. It is one of the biggest time wasters, so controlling the element will help with your concentration and writing focus.
- Write somewhere with no distractions. Find a comfortable place to write. Whether it is a library or a backyard. Avoid distraction, this includes your cell phone.
- Submit corrections to your professors early&often. Get as many correction of drafts as possible. It will let them know you are serious about graduating this century.
- Use reliable referencing. Collate, sync citations between devices and share references. The best way to create a bibliography for your PhD.
- Enjoy submitting as much as possible! Relax and enjoy yourself and call yourself Dr.. You deserve it !
How to write Review of Literatures
If you are writing a thesis or dissertation, you will most likely have to write a literature review. Simply put, since your dissertation will draw on previous research, you need the literature review to show how your work fits in with and contributes to existing knowledge in the subject area. It is therefore an integral part of any dissertation.
A good literature review shows that you understand the subject matter. You can do this by critically assessing past research. This is vital so that your reader is clear about the purpose of your research and the theoretical basis upon which you are building your work.
The literature review also helps you to justify your research, since relating it back to past studies will provide important context. To do this effectively, you need to convince the reader of the contribution your work will make to the field.
How do I create a literature review?
The length and depth of your literature review depends on the length of your project.
If you are writing a 10-page argument paper, you may have room to include 5-6 sources to review, because you will also be establishing your argument as well, but there’s no hard equation for how many or how much.
Use your judgment and most importantly, consult your instructor about expectations.
The structure of a literature review
A literature review should be structured like any other essay: it should have an introduction, a middle or main body, and a conclusion.
The introduction should:
- define your topic and provide an appropriate context for reviewing the literature;
- establish your reasons – i.e. point of view – for
- reviewing the literature;
- explain the organisation – i.e. sequence – of the review;
- state the scope of the review – i.e. what is included and what isn’t included. For example, if you were reviewing the literature on obesity in children you might say something like: There are a large number of studies of obesity trends in the general population. However, since the focus of this research is on obesity in children, these will not be reviewed in detail and will only be referred to as appropriate.
The middle or main body should:
- organise the literature according to common themes;
- provide insight into the relation between your chosen topic and the wider subject area e.g. between obesity in children and obesity in general;
- move from a general, wider view of the literature being reviewed to the specific focus of your research.
The conclusion should:
- summarise the important aspects of the existing body of literature;
- evaluate the current state of the literature reviewed;
- identify significant flaws or gaps in existing knowledge;
- outline areas for future study;
- link your research to existing knowledge.
Final Thoughts on How to Write a Literature Review
You’ve just learned how to write a literature review. It doesn’t get any easier than that. Look at each step and see how you can make the best out of it. Is this the only way to write a literature review? No. Others may talk of only 4 steps while others may say there are as many as 15 or 20 steps.
It is best to understand what sort of content goes into a well-written literature. Do not obsess about the steps discussed. That said, the steps described above guide you as you build your paper, making sure you never miss an essential element.
Here’s the main takeaway. Unlike a research paper, a literature review is not interested in adding new ideas to existing research. Instead, it summarises, synthesises, and organises existing knowledge, leading to a broader understanding of a particular subject.
You may decide to follow this guideline or get from professionals who will guide you throughout the whole process of your writing!
How To Make Your introductory Paragraph Stand Out – The Happy Arkansan
- Take The Course With A Professor On Campus
Even online professors can prove to be very helpful to you as you finish more of your career as a college student. You should be taking the time to email with them, visit during office hours, ask for feedback on your papers, and more.
Getting to know a professor online is a lot harder than an in-class professor, but it’s not impossible! If you take your online class seriously you will probably have just as many questions for an online class as you do for an in-person class.
2. Follow Your Syllabus Closely
The syllabus is the most important document of any online (or any in-person) class. Your syllabus is so important in an online course because you usually don’t see your professor on a weekly basis. Your professor will not always be there to warn you about due dates and upcoming projects. You Need To Be On Top Of Your Stuff. Don’t depend on anyone to tell you when things are due, all your answers are waiting for you in your syllabus! Put All Your Due Dates In A Planner Or In A Singular Document
3. Familiarise Yourself With Your Course Shell
Different professors utilize the course shell differently. Chances are in an online course, the course shell will be way more filled out than it normally would be for an in-person course. In online courses, professors are trying to create a great user experience where you can find as much information as you need online.
4. Check Your Email And Course Shell Daily
Updates happen in online courses ALL. THE. TIME. You need to make sure that you are connecting with your email and course shell daily. You never want to miss an update, a test, or anything in between because you decided to take an internet break. Checking your email and course shell only takes a few minutes of your time each day!
5. Work On Your Course Throughout The Week
Block out time multiple days a week to work on your online courses.You wouldn’t stick the work for a normal course into one day, so don’t do that for online courses.
6. Do As Much Of The Reading As You Can
Skimming is such an art form that I wish I had earlier in my college career. You may not be able to read every single page of your reading for online or in-person classes, but if you can skim well you will get the most important pieces of information from each thing you have to read!
7. Find A Few Classmates To Work On The Class With
Chances are you know at least one or two people in the online course, especially if the course is within your major. Find a few people in the courses forum or roster that you have had a class with previously, and see if they want to work on the course with you.
This will help you have an accountability buddy. You may set up a weekly meeting a few days before the weekly course material is due. That way you can work together for a few hours, not feel so alone while taking the course, and even get your course work done early!
8. Create A Distraction-Free Workspace
Get a great desk lamp, Comfy chairs & keyboards,Don’t work on your bed, Stop working around Chatty Cathy’s: Don’t be a multi-tasker! Instead, focus on the work at hand, your online class. If you have a friend who just won’t shut up, kindly stop working with them and work solo!
9. Always Account For Technical Issues
you can’t always control when you are able to get to the course work you need to do, but if you can help it, start working on things early so you can get technical issues worked out if they appear.
10. Don’t Ignore The Course Just Because It’s Online
The world is changing and so is education. Online courses are just as valuable as in-person courses, and you can still learn a lot with an online course!
Taking an online course is a huge responsibility. You need to be focused, determined, and ready to crush the course! I hope that today’s blog has given you some food for thought as you conquer your next online course!
How to Write a Research Paper Professors Will Love
How to Write a Research Paper
Step #1 Brainstorm Research Paper Topics
Brainstorming–is an activity where you list many ideas quickly. Imagine a thunderstorm of paper topics falling. It’s a process where you set aside a certain amount of time (usually 10-20 minutes) and write down every idea you think of even if it doesn’t seem like a good topic.
Step #2 Create a Research Plan
Once you have your paper topic, you need to figure out how you are going to research it. There are 2 parts to developing your research plan: 1) writing a research question, and 2) crafting a research strategy.
Design a Research Strategy
A research strategy describes how you will conduct your research. It looks at what types of sources you seek, and where you will look for them. Then the final part of a research strategy is to come up with a timeline.
In a timeline, you start with the due date of your research paper and estimate how long it will take you to write, revise, and edit your paper. You fill in those days as “writing days.” Then decide how much time it will take you to complete all your research. Here are some questions to help you set up your timeline:
- How long will it take you to find sources?
- How long will it take you to complete your notes?
- How long will it take you to organise your notes and evidence?
Step # 3 Research and Take Detailed Notes
Next, you’ll find sources. By now, you should already know the types of sources you need that will help you to answer your research question. Once you’ve gathered sources, it’s time to take detailed notes.
Detailed notes contain:
- Author or abbreviated title of a source.
- Page numbers or location in the source
- Slug—this is a few words that describe the note’s content.
- The quote, paraphrase, or summary of the fact, evidence, etc.
- (Note: For APA and Chicago Style Research Papers include the year the text was published)
Step #4 Outline Your Research Paper
A good outline makes writing the first draft of your research paper a lot easier. You can skip this step, but outlining will save you time when you write because you won’t have to go searching for lost pieces of research or evidence.
So, what should you include in your outline?
- Introduction—write your thesis statement and any other general ideas you want to include.
- Body—divide it into sections and subtopics, and that includes supporting facts and evidence. Add in-text citations too.
- Conclusion—rephrase the thesis statement & how you proved it, and the significance of your research paper.
I’ve included an editable template for outlining a research paper in the free guide. The great thing about this template is that you can take pieces of your outline and put them into your first draft!
Step #5 Write Your First Draft
Once you have an outline, begin writing your first draft. An advantage of having an outline is that you can start writing the first draft from any part of it. If you want to write the body of your research paper, skip the introduction. Then launch into writing a section from wherever you are most comfortable.
Here are a few tips for writing your first draft:
- Create small writing goals—Look at your project goal. Divide it up into smaller goals that lead up to your complete paper assignment. Then focus on one small goal at a time. Some ways you can divide your project goal up are:
- A word or page count
- Hours of writing time
- Sections of your paper
- Use a timer—Set a specific amount of time (25, 30, 50 minutes, etc.) during which you will only write your paper.
- Don’t focus on grammar, sentences, spelling, or anything else that will get you out of the “writing zone”—a first draft is a “rough” draft.
- If you get stuck, move on—You can always leave a note to “add more” or “fix this” in the comment feature.
- Include in-text citations in your first draft—you should already have these in your outline. Transfer them from your outline into your first draft, so you don’t forget to do it later.
Step #6 Revise Your Research Paper
What’s the difference between revising and editing? Revising focuses on changing the “big aspects” of your writing content and organisation. Editing focuses on “smaller” finer aspects of writing: grammar, mechanics, and writing style.
When you revise your research paper, start with the content. Ask yourself:
- What am I trying to prove, explain, or analyse?
- What is my thesis statement? Does it include the topic of the paper and my point of view on it?
- What are my main ideas?
- What are my supporting details?
- What proof and evidence do I include to support my ideas?
- Do I explain my proof or evidence? (If not then add this to your paper).
Next, focus on the organisation of your paper.
- Does your introduction include a hook, general background information, and your thesis statement?
- Does each section of the body of your paper flow logically from one part to the next?
- Do all your paragraphs relate to your thesis statement?
- Does your conclusion summarise your thesis statement and describe the significance of your research paper?
Step #7 Edit Your Research Paper
Editing your research paper is where you put the final touches on your work. Your clear up any confusing sentences, fix your grammar, and make your writing sparkle.
You also look to see if your references and citations are correct. Did you cite everything you need to? Does your paper follow the right style and format for MLA, APA, Chicago Style, or whatever reference style you need to use?
My free guide, How to Write A Research Paper That Will Blow Your Professor’s Mind, includes revision and editing question sheets. Use these when you revise and edit on your own or in a peer-revision group.
Write Your Research Paper
Maybe you don’t want to write an inspiring research paper. Perhaps you want to get it done and hope it gets a “good enough” grade. If that’s you, skip some of these steps, and rush to write your research paper.
But if you do that, you miss out on the opportunity to change your readers’ minds, show them something unique, reveal a new insight or innovation, and astound them.
Seize that opportunity and make the most of your words, ideas, analysis, and evidence when you write a research paper! You’ll blow the mind of everyone who reads your work.
Want to know more about how to write an outstanding research paper?
Download your free copy of How to Write a Research Paper That Will Blow Your Professor’s Mind!