Writing can be a very time-consuming activity for college students, especially if you lack the requisite direction and organizational skills. Learning good habits can help you to get more accomplished in less time if you practice them regularly. Take a look at the following list of habits and tips and see what you can do to make your time writing more productive and take your writing to the next level.
1. Dedicated work space. Having a place to go to when you are ready to write is one of the key ingredients to success and productivity for writers. Try finding a regular place where you can do your work that is free from distractions. Some people can work better in busier environments; others cannot be distracted whatsoever. Find a place that is going to work for you and make it part of your writing routine.
2. Have plenty of material to work with. Whether you need notes, research, or other documents to assist you in your writing, go to your writing session prepared. Working without the appropriate materials can seriously affect your productivity and your chances for a successful writing session.
3. Set aside time for your writing. Giving yourself a window of time each day to work on your writing projects establishes boundaries and gives structure to writing activities. Writing at the same time each day can help solidify the habit and really help with your output as a writer.
4. Know when to take a step back. Sometimes it is abundantly clear when you are not going to get anything done, and the frustration of being unable to say anything on the page becomes overwhelming. When this happens, take a break and come back to it when you’re ready.
5. Continue moving forward. After your break, continue moving forward with your writing. Don’t spend valuable time looking back at what you’ve done with a project. Write what’s relevant to the piece right now and leave the revision process for later when the project has been completed.
6. Put distance between writing and proofreading. When working on longer writing projects, this is especially important. Once you feel you have finished the piece you have been working on, don’t start proofreading it right away. The more distance you put between the writing process and going back to revise, the more clearly you will be able to look at your words without missing important gaps and/or errors.
7. Make adjustments as needed. Revision is very important as well for pieces of all lengths. Longer pieces of writing will need more adjusting than shorter ones, but revision is the key to effectively communicating your point.
8. Trim the fat. If your piece is excessively wordy for no reason, eliminate the fluff and get down to business, especially when writing copy or brief pieces. Redundancy can be the death-blow to a seemingly successful piece of writing.
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