Thursday, December 11, 2008

How to Write A Major Paper: The Paul Method

  1. Read the assignment instructions carefully
  2. Re-read the instructions
  3. Have you written anything else for this professor? If so, read the comments from that paper.
  4. Choose your topic
  5. Choose an appropriate number of sources. Make sure you use some current sources. Check JSTOR or some other academic database for online access to current journals.
  6. You need a break. Watch TV, or even better, download an episode of your favourite TV show onto your computer
  7. Make an outline
  8. You need a break. Go for a walk
  9. That outline doesn't look any good. Rewrite it
  10. Re-read the assignment instructions
  11. Write your first paragraph
  12. That looks great! You're on a roll!
  13. Update your facebook status to tell everybody about your great success so far at writing this paper
  14. That first paragraph sucks. Rewrite it
  15. You need a break. Surf the internet for awhile
  16. Write steadily for 20 minutes
  17. You're doing great! This is an easy paper to write!
  18. How many pages?
  19. Three! Awesome! That's practically done!
  20. Wait. How long does this paper have to be again?
  21. Re-read the assignment instructions
  22. THAT long!?!?
  23. Panic
  24. You need a break. Go buy some junk food, and eat it while staring at a blank page
  25. Write a paragraph
  26. That paragraph sucks. Delete it.
  27. Update your facebook status to show that your previous enthusiasm is waning
  28. Re-read one of your sources
  29. Stare at a blank screen
  30. You need a break. Watch another episode of True Blood
  31. Okay. Focus.
  32. Man, it's late. You'd better get to bed
  33. Next day: re-read what you have so far
  34. Update your facebook status
  35. Write for 20 solid minutes
  36. Wow! You're amazing!
  37. Update your facebook status
  38. You've earned a break. Surf the net for awhile
  39. Update your facebook status
  40. Re-read the assignment instructions
  41. Re-read what you have so far
  42. Check the time
  43. CRAP! The paper is due first thing tomorrow, and you're only halfway done!
  44. Panic
  45. Update your facebook status
  46. Write steadily for 20 minutes
  47. Re-read what you have so far
  48. ... I guess it makes sense if you move THAT part over HERE
  49. Now just add a conclusion
  50. Conclusion...
  51. Stare at your paper
  52. Update your facebook status
  53. Re-state your introduction
  54. Go to bed
  55. Wake up
  56. Shoot! You need a bibliography!
  57. Panic
  58. Assemble and write your bibliography
  59. Print your paper, and hand it in
  60. Update your facebook status

2 comments:

Jan or Paul said...

Yup. That is Exactly what I Witnessed.
J

Laura said...

I often think I miss school and look forward to going back and getting more of that education stuff. Then I remember what it is actually like....
Thanks for the reminder!!