Some Writing Tips from Our Tutors!

Hello, Marauders! As you know, the Writing Center is here to help you with all of your writing needs, so I decided to ask around for some helpful tips and tricks—and who better to ask than our very own tutors? Sometimes we also struggle with writing. We understand it can be hard to write introductions, come up with thesis statements, figure out how to organize the paper, and everything else in between. So what are some strategies to help with these common problems? Here’s what our tutors have to say about it: 

Eden, English Writing Studies major/Anthropology minor: Getting started is the hardest part. If you can’t get started, start in the middle. Start with your body paragraphs or your supporting evidence. You don’t always have to start with your introduction or thesis. 

Anna, Secondary English Education major/Theatre minor: When you’re working on something, the most important part is writing the first draft. Because once it’s concrete, not just something in your head, you can work on improving and revising, and anything else to make it better.   

Lauryn, Secondary English Education major: You don’t have to write your paper in any specific order; you can jump around from section to section. 

Emily, English major/Writing Studies minor: After you’ve finished writing a first draft of your paper, READ YOUR PAPER OUT LOUD! After working on it for an extended period of time, it’s so easy to miss things no matter how many times you review it on your screen. Reading the paper out loud is so helpful in catching grammatical mistakes, missing punctuation, and hearing how the paper flows.  

Carson, Secondary English Education major: Always write your introductions last.  

Allison, English major/Art minor: In terms of writing advice, I think it’s really important to get into the practice of letting your peers read your work, even if it’s just like your best friend. Just letting someone else see it to review it and letting another person get another pair of eyes on it is an important part of the writing process in my opinion. 

Jake, Writing Studies major: Write a bad first draft. 

As you can see, there are lots of different approaches to writing. The important thing is to figure out what works best for you and your writing style, habits, and productivity. Writing is a process that involves a lot of different moving parts, and the journey is usually never linear. Author Akemi Dawn Bowman says, “Focus on your own journey, and try not to worry about what’s going on in the lane next to you” (“21 Authors Share One Piece of Advice for Writers”). I hope these tips and tricks from our tutors are helpful to you! As always, stop by the Writing Center for more help! We’re open Monday through Thursday from 1:00 PM to 9:00 PM and Fridays from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. Feel free to drop in or better, make an appointment through Starfish (click here for instructions). Happy writing!