Writing a college essay can be a very difficult task. However, there are techniques to help make this task easier. The writing process is a three stage approach to planning and creating a college essay. These stages are known as prewriting, writing, and revising. If a student follows this process, she will write a good paper.

The first stage of the writing process is called prewriting. There are five prewriting techniques that help writers to understand the topic and purpose of the writing assignment and limit the topic to a manageable and appropriate idea. The techniques are brainstorming, freewriting, diagramming, making a list, and preparing an outline. In brainstorming, you generate ideas for you writing. A writer might view a film and discuss or write their impressions, write a list of ideas for an essay, or discuss a topic with a group of students. You might ask yourself some questions such as What? Why? When? Where? How? and Who? In freewriting, you write non-stop about a subject for a certain amount of time. Spelling or punctuation, mistakes, and finding exact words do not matter. It helps you to get a clearer picture of what you are trying you say. Diagramming is helpful for people who think in a visual way. You can put your idea in a circle or block and branch off examples or other ideas pertaining to it. The fourth technique is making a list. You list as many items you can that has a relation to your topic. Your goal is to make details and to gather as much material as possible so you have something to start with when you go to write your paper. The last technique is preparing an outline. The thesis statement is clearly stated on the outline and a specific outline format is followed.  Outlining gives you a sense of organization and allows you to see quickly if you have enough support for your ideas. After the writer is done prewriting, she moves on to the next step.

The second stage for the writing process is called writing. In the writing phase, you make decisions about developing and organizing your ideas into writing and discover what you know about the subject. Insights gained from the prewriting phase help shape ideas into meaning for yourself and others. The writer may prepare a rough draft, focusing on the purpose of the writing and choosing a suitable form for a specific audience. You need a thesis to work with first. The thesis will be your guide while you write your essay. An effective thesis statement should not be an obvious opinion that every reader already shares and focuses on an idea that can be supported evidence rather than emotion. Writers might develop ideas using imagery, logical argument, supporting detail, examples, etc. After the writer is done with the writing stage, she moves on the third step.

The third stage of the writing process is called revising. You clarify and refine your writing in thesis stage. After you have finished one or more drafts of the essay, you should begin revising your paper. Revising might involve reworking the written expression, so that it clearly and actively conveys the ideas, rearranging words or sentences to create and effect, and inserting punctuation and correcting spelling to assist the reader. At this stage of the writing process, you are interested in clarifying the message by changing words, sentences, or even whole paragraphs. Two examples of revising are editing and proofreading. When you edit your paper, you are looking for mistakes in grammar, mechanics, punctuation, and usage. Proofreading comes after you edit in the final copy for any mistakes in typing or handwriting. Revising might also involve redrafting.

As you can clearly see, the writing process is a three step approach that makes writing easier. If you follow these steps, you should be able to write a good college essay.

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