Posts for the Topic editing

One and done: some tips and tricks on drafting

Person editing their writing

Have you ever looked at a finished piece of writing and wondered how someone could ever write something that amazing? Have you ever looked at one of your own first drafts and wondered how it could ever be something worth reading? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then this is the blog post for you.

Put it in reverse!

hand drawing an arrow on paper

Sometimes you have to work backwards to move forward. If you ever find yourself stuck while writing (and unable to make it to the Writing and Communication Centre), creating a reverse outline may be your solution. This strategy entails looking at each of your paragraphs and summarizing the main idea you are trying to portray in 1-2 sentences. Even with an initial outline, your ideas change as you write, so this strategy allows you to take a step back and ensure that your writing flows like Niagara Falls.

The art of taking negative feedback

Image of Ned Stark from the TV show "Game of Thrones" which reads: "Brace Yourselves. Constructive Criticism is Coming"

Knowing you did something wrong is tough. Being called out on it can be even harsher. As students, however, feedback is something you often get. While we usually gloss over the positive feedback, when we face negative feedback we can become pretty defensive. And that’s natural. Your writing is something special that you created and thus when you receive criticism, it can seem like an attack on you. However, while some of this criticism can come across as demeaning or confidence shattering, there are usually helpful things to be taken from the notes your marker has left for you.

Building habits to be a better writer pt. 2: write daily

Spongebob struggling to think of something to write

The best way to get better at anything is through lots (and lots) of practice. If you want to improve your writing, write more! Many successful authors advocate daily writing, but how can you get into the habit of writing every day?

● Set goals

Black tie blunders, part 2: how to correct formality errors

woman in puffy prom dress standing beside woman in business suit

In last week’s post, we covered the many misconceptions that exist around the concept of formal writing, with a particular emphasis on the belief that formal writing should be full of polysyllabic words and complicated sentences. As we discussed, formality in writing is all about following a specific set of conventions and has almost nothing to do with shoehorning big words into your work.

From the CanLit Guides Workshop to the Writing Centre: Using the Think-Aloud Protocol as a Tool for Peer Review

It’s almost lunchtime on a Tuesday morning, and although undergraduate students are studying silently just outside the door, the Davis Centre library’s conference room is abuzz with chatter. Scattered throughout the room are doctoral students reading and chatting as part of Dissertation Boot Camp – an intensive four-day program designed to help graduate students make progress on their writing projects.

In Summary...

It’s hard to conclude your work when you get to the end, especially when so much has happened. This is usually where you question yourself: What have I learned? Why was this important? How could I improve? Did I enjoy what I did?

Stop looking at Instagram and just get started!

(Unless it's our Instagram you're looking at!)

When you look at someone else’s Instagram account you see the great vacation, the beautiful hair, the new girlfriend, and the winning game. You don’t see the peeling sunburn, all the days she hid under a hat, the heartbreak it took him eight months to get over, or the years and years of practice that led to a single successful game.

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