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Jun 11th 2018

What Are Your Rituals Before Writing Your Essay?

In the old days, authors take long walks before writing a chapter or several chapters (at the most). It's an effective method of letting those creative juices overflow after savoring a bright, cool day. It doesn't mean that a gray, cold morning isn't less effective. (You might be thinking of a Gothic story.) It's more complicated these days, as there are many distractions to keep writers from doing the job right away. In the case of college students, it may be a Herculean effort.

There are days when paper writing is easier than expected while there are other days when a student must indulge in a ritual or two. Those who are unfamiliar with the writing process might look at it as odd, if not a waste of time. But it's not. A good writer must be in a playful mood in able to be creative enough. It doesn't mean that writing isn't a serious matter. On the contrary. (Victor Hugo's strange habit of taking his clothes off during a cold morning may have done wonders for his career, but it won't be for everyone.) And college students don't have to go through such extremes in able to find their literary muse.

These so-called rituals are important during those pressure-packed days, when there would be little time left for other things. It should be normal to panic during these moments, but experience should help you handle the same situation better.

Why You Must Do the Following

Read a book (or a periodical). The so-called useless information should give you a brilliant idea for an essay opening. You may not be working for a museum, but you can imagine such a place that houses priceless artifacts from past civilizations. And you won't be suspected of stretching your imagination too far. (If you haven't been to the British Museum, then your coursemate might have seen "Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb" on video. No harm in asking.) Different books give you different ideas, which could be better than your initial arguments. If you're done with novels (for a while), then browse at online publications. It won't take long to spot a catchy title, if not an off-topic that interests you. You may not get valuable information right away, but don't press the matter. A light-bulb moment can come your way.

Browse the Internet. An absorbing article on leech farming might save you from a boring afternoon, but you don't see Virginia Woolf engaging in such an activity. It should give you a hint on how authors engage in conversations. There's a strong possibility that it can be academic in nature. There should be a comparison, if not critiquing, of other works. You're interested in other things, though. You should figure out how the Net can help you pen a reader-friendly paper. In other words, the kind of paper that won't give your professor a headache. You don't need Einstein's assistance, as you can start the process by making a habit of using simple words. This enables you to express your ideas and/or thoughts clearly.

Do child's play. If reading other books overwhelms you, then you must forget your assignment. Recall your childhood days, which should help you regain your enthusiasm. You might have brought along your Lego blocks, which you fiddle with. There may be a ball in the corner of your room. Drawing piques your curiosity, but it happens at an unexpected moment. Don't hesitate to do any of the following. It can be an invigorating experience. It can help you recall something, which should trigger that sudden urge to write with abandon.

Recall recent events. You have made new friends during a recent party, which is hosted by your coursemate. You have an interesting conversation on why the glorious days of Will Smith are long gone, and why starring in a superhero movie won't work (in his favor) anymore. It didn't take long to drift further back, as you still had vivid memories of your first (and only) camping with your high school buddies. And you wouldn't forget your first visit to Disneyland. A certain detail might give you a peculiar feeling, which can lead to a moment of resolve. If it's not the urgency to finish your paper as soon as possible, then it might question your first impression of an assigned text. Don't be disheartened by the possibility of spending more time on writing. You might get a higher grade.

Eat (if you must). The brain needs calories, and you may not have enough of it. If a fruit is not good enough, then it's time to indulge on your guilty pleasure. Binge may not be right, but you don't have time to prepare food. And you can share your food with your roommate (or dorm mate).

When Sleeping Is Not An Option

This is not the right time to give in and sleep it off. If you can muster your self-discipline, then you can afford to lie down for a while. You might close your eyes, but don't be in that state for too long. (In other words, don't drink further.) Do something, anything. It's the only way to help you do your homework.

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