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  1. 1. The Writing Process for Consultants<br />
  2. 2. 2<br />Clients may have different writing styles.<br />Writing Styles Vary<br />Top-down style<br />prefer to plan before they write<br />often begin with larger concepts or generalizations first, then work in details <br />prefer outlines (hierarchies) to lists<br />
  3. 3. Bottom-up Styles<br />begin with a draft, often in the middle<br />organize, cut, and shape after they have poured out all their ideas on paper<br />prefer lists when they do plan<br />
  4. 4. Prewriting Activities<br />Use journalists’ questions (who, <br /> what, when, where, why)<br />Brainstorm <br />List ideas<br />Freewrite<br />Cluster<br />Venn Diagram<br />Prewriting Activities<br />
  5. 5. ?<br />Questions to Help Develop Ideas<br />What is my subject? Is my purpose to inform or to persuade? <br />Which aspects of my subject should I emphasize? <br />Is my subject similar to another subject that may be familiar to my readers? <br />If my subject is an event or object, what caused or created it? Would understanding the cause or a precedent make it easier for my audience to understand my subject? <br />What effects has my subject had or is it likely to have? Are the effects important or unexpected?<br />
  6. 6. Advice for Topic Selection<br />Advice for Topic Selection<br />The topic should be interesting to you.<br />The topic should be researchable.<br />The topic should not be too broad.<br />Avoid topics that are overworked.<br />Reminder: Do you need to have your topic approved?<br />
  7. 7. Thesis Statement Help<br />Thesis Statement Help<br />Developing a working thesis should be among first priorities. <br />The working thesis may change through the writing process. <br />
  8. 8. Thesis Statement Template<br /> Use the following template to help you get started.<br />In this essay, I will (argue, defend, explain, demonstrate, analyze) that ____________________ because (1)_______________, (2)_________, and (3)_______________. <br />In this essay, I will demonstrate that the Aggie<br />network is valuable because (1), (2), and (3).<br />
  9. 9. Audience Analysis<br />Audience Analysis<br />What do your readers know about the subject? <br />What is their general level of education?<br />What are their values and attitudes?<br />What is your relationship to your readers?<br />What is your attitude toward your readers?<br />Why would they be reading your paper?<br />What questions would they have about this subject?<br />What kinds of responses do you wish to evoke?<br />What are their opinions about the subject?<br />What kinds of evidence are normally used to convince this type of reader? <br />
  10. 10. Advice for Organizing<br />Look at the questions you answered when you were developing your working thesis.<br />Look at your prewriting.<br />Find the main ideas or categories of your thinking.<br />Put less important items under more important items.<br />Make an outline (or not—some people just start drafting but do more drafts to make up for less planning).<br />Decide how you will set up your paper.<br />How can you organize the paper to achieve your objective? <br />
  11. 11. Basic Organization<br />Introduction—provides context so readers know what you will be discussing; introduces thesis<br />Body—the argument, discussion, etc.<br />Conclusion—restates the argument, wraps up the discussion, recommends a solution.<br />
  12. 12. Organizing Comparison/Contrast<br />Use the Venn diagram to find the similarities and differences between the two topics.<br />Ways to set up your paper:<br />Subject by subject: This pattern discusses Subject A, then Subject B, then how the subjects compare and contrast.<br />Point by point: This pattern discusses each point and how Subject A compares or contrasts with Subject B on that point. <br />Organizing Comparison/Contrast<br />
  13. 13. Organizing Argument<br />Organizing Argument<br />Talk about any concessions or counter-arguments at the beginning of the paper to get them out of the way. <br />One way to set up your argument:<br />2nd strongest argument (We remember what we hear first, second best.)<br />Weakest argument (We forget the stuff in the middle.)<br />Strongest argument (We remember what we hear last, best.)<br />You want the last word.<br />
  14. 14. Problem/Solution Organization<br />Problem/Solution Organzation<br />Begin by describing the problem.<br />Then discuss the possible solutions that you do not propose. Be fair. <br />Introduce your proposed solution.<br />To get the disadvantages of your solution out of the way, talk about them first.<br />End with the advantages of your solution.<br />
  15. 15. Advice for drafting<br />Advice for Drafting<br />Follow your outline if you made one. <br />If you like to just get writing, don’t feel you have to start with an introduction. Write down your thesis and begin to develop support.<br />First drafts are usually very rough. You should revise it numerous times. <br />In early drafts think more about getting the ideas on paper; in later drafts think more about tailoring to your reader’s needs and expectations.<br />
  16. 16. Advice for Drafting<br />Advice for Drafting<br />When you make a general statement, be sure to support or elaborate your idea:<br />Facts<br />Opinions—especially the opinions of experts on the subject<br />Reasons<br />Examples<br />Cause/Effect<br />
  17. 17. More Drafting Advice<br />More Drafting Advice<br />Check the paper’s development.<br />Are there sufficient details?<br />Is the logic valid?<br />Are the major points connected?<br />Are the relationships between them expressed clearly?<br />Have you used transitions to help your reader see the relationships?<br />
  18. 18. for Proofreading<br />Advice for Proofreading<br />Put your paper aside for a few hours or longer before you proofread.<br />Use spell check and grammar check, but they can trip you up, so also print out a copy and read slowly.<br />Slow down your reading by reading aloud and tracing along with your finger.<br />Enlist a fresh pair of eyes to help you—a collaborator, classmate, anyone but you.<br />Better to make a neat correction on a finished paper than to turn it in with an error.<br />
  19. 19. Advice for Revision<br />Advice for Revision<br />Novices revise once, if at all. Experts revise many times, depending on the task.<br />Start with global revision:<br />Changes in paragraph structure or order<br />Changes in content<br />Changes at the whole document level<br />