Writing: Reasons and Process

In this episode from Perfect English Podcast, you will learn about the four main reasons why we write and the main process any kind of writing should usually follow. This is the first in a series of lessons that will be part of Perfect English Podcast. We will talk about writing in details, we will talk about the techniques for writing specific types, such as narrative paragraphs and argumentative essays, and we will also talk about creative writing, so stay tuned for this weekly writing episode from Perfect English Podcast. Listen to the episode, and take the quiz to make sure you have understood the most important things from this episode.

Perfect English Podcast Episode 52 – Writing: Reasons and Process Audio

Perfect English Podcast Episode 52 – Writing: Reasons and Process Quiz

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In the thinking part of the process of writing, you have to make sure that you have all your punctuation and grammar correct.

Correct! Wrong!

Proofreading is the final polishing of the writing that focuses mostly on the mechanical aspects, such as grammar and punctuation.

Correct! Wrong!

What are the three most important questions you should ask yourself before any kind of writing activity?

Please select 3 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

Which are the four main reasons for writing?

Please select 4 correct answers

Correct! Wrong!

In the drafting and reading stage, you should present the writing in its final publishable version.

Correct! Wrong!

Perfect English Podcast Episode 52 - Writing: Reasons and Process Quiz
Perfect English Podcast Episode 52 - Writing: Reasons and Process Quiz

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Episode Transcript

0:05
Welcome to a new episode from perfect English podcast. Today we’re going to talk about writing. And this is the first time I talked about writing in this podcast, and I promise it won’t be the last. The purpose of these writing episodes that I’m going to create every week is to help you with ideas and techniques that will make your writing process a lot easier. We will focus on academic writing, and creative writing. But first, we will start with a very basic and that is the process of writing. And that is what we’re going to talk about today we will focus even more on the reasons for writing. Before we start, I just want to remind you that I have created a very short quiz you can use at the end of this episode to check your understanding of the things we talked about today. So all you need to do is click on the link in the description of the episode and you’re good to go. But now let’s get to it and let’s start talking about the process of writing. But first let me start by something Jean Fowler said and Jean Fowler was an American

1:10
journalist. He said writing is easy. All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until the drops of blood form on your forehead. Well, that sounds dramatic, doesn’t it? Now Jean Fowler presents a common although exaggerated view on how tough writing can be. It isn’t easy and there’s no point pretending it is but you don’t really have to sweat blood. what you’ve got to do is discover and put into action your own writing process. A good writing is the result of an effective writing process. Those certain activities are common to everyone’s writing process. Each person develops an individual procedure, or actually a sequence of procedures for getting the job done. Thus, I cannot describe a specific planned for you to follow. I can however, identify some general procedures that should give you a good idea of how to develop your own effective process. And let me start by talking about the reasons for writing a Why do we write no one writes without a reason, a motive or motives. For most students, riders, the reason is automatic, they have to write teachers make writing assignments, and students have to write those assignments if they expect to pass the course. In a larger perspective, the reasons of writers even students writers are often more complicated than that a student writing a letter to apply for a summer job has a reason a bit more complex than getting a good grade from a teacher. A student writing a statement of educational goals and personal career objectives for a scholarship application also has a larger reason. So does a student completing a similar section on an application To law or medical school outside of college, many people who would not ordinarily call themselves writers find that they too must try it for complex reasons. A business consultant finds she must try the results of her analysis and her recommendations for her client. A store manager finds he must not only write a projected budget for the next fiscal year, but also add a written justification or explanation for that budget. an insurance agent must write a letter to a policyholder informing her client as to how much of a claim is covered by the policy. There are in fact many occupations that require writing for several different reasons. Even though not one of those occupations carries the job title writer, there are even more reasons to write we write personal letters and notes to relatives and friends to let them know details of our lives and to keep channeling have communication open. Some of us keep diaries or journals not for others to read. But for our own reflection or reference, there’s something about writing things down. That often helps us clarify and sort our thoughts, even if what we write is only a to do list for one day or a grocery shopping list. Ironically, professional writers often write for the same reason students do because they have to. For such writers, the need to write comes from complex inner reasons tied to their own creativity and their own ways of looking at and making sense of the world. For these professionals. their sense of themselves is as writers they write as much for self fulfillment. As for a livelihood, every writer of every kind then has some kind of reason or reasons for writing. I think it is useful to identify four major reasons that people write people write to express People write to explain or inform people right to analyze and people write to persuade, in other words, people right to express their feelings, attitudes, intuitions, thoughts, and philosophies. Now this can be done not only in a personal essay, but also in poetry, fiction and drama people write to explain to readers or to inform readers about some person, place thing or event or procedure so as to convey that information for whatever use may be made of it. People right to analyze a person, place thing, event procedure, subject or document so as to present an understanding of the relationship of its parts to a whole impression, assessment or summary effect or to show a fundamental grasp of its internal structure and pass along insights, formulations or recommendations based on that analysis. And people write to persuade readers To understand and accept the writers conclusions, opinions, viewpoints, recommended actions or attitudes about a given subject. So in any one’s writing process reasons are critical, your writing must have a purpose. But while a writer must have reasons reasons alone will not produce effective writing, writing is a process or a set of processes, a complex activity. Having reasons is just a start. Now, I’m going to suggest three ways to size up the situation for your writing. Now keeping your reason for writing in mind at all times, think about the following ingredients in each writing situation you face. The first thing is Who are you as a writer on this assignment? That is, what kind of person do you want to seem to be to your readers, expert, sincere, stuffy, angry critical if your purpose is to inform you might want to sound confident and knowledgeable your tone one of trustworthiness. If your purpose is to persuade, you might want to sound not only confident and knowledgeable but urgently concerned as well personally convinced that you are urging the right course of action. Thinking about this question will help you begin to select the right tone of voice for your purpose and your audience. Now, the second thing you need to think about is Who are your readers on this assignment? What are their concerns and interests? What can you say that you know will be of special importance to them? How can you gain their attention and stand your best chance of achieving your purpose or reason for writing? And one more thing you have to think about is given your reason for writing, the kind of readers you have and the tone of voice you have chosen. What details word choices, sentences, examples, facts, information will most likely To help you achieve your purpose or reason for writing, which of these details are most appropriate for your writing task, you won’t be able to come up with a thorough list of answers to these questions while you’re sizing up your writing situation. But that’s alright. If you keep these considerations in mind throughout the time you are writing, you will find they will help you make specific decisions about word choice sentences and content. And those are important decisions for any writer. And now as we

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have covered in general, the four reasons for writing, let’s go through four kinds of writing process activities that almost applies to any kind of writing you may be interested in. If you were to study the activities of a successful professional writer, as that writer writes a feasibility study or a business letter, for example, you might well be able to sort out these four kinds of activities. We have these four activities that almost always apply to me kinds of writing any writer in any situation, whatever they may be writing, the first thing is thinking. The second thing is drafting and reading. The third thing revising and editing and finally, proofreading. Now, these activities do not necessarily occur separately or always in the same sequence I gave you they can even occur simultaneously synching can occur during all the activities revising can occur during proofreading, and so on. So that is not exactly a rule you have to follow religiously. It is just something to keep in the back of your mind. Your conscious awareness of these activities in your own writing process should help you improve that process. Now, I will talk about each of these four steps to help you understand better what I mean by these four steps. And the most important thing is how you relate to these steps. Now, while I’m talking about these things, you might be thinking to yourselves, that is this is the way I Do it or you might think to yourself, which is actually the purpose of this episode. Oh yeah, that’s a good idea. Why don’t I try this the next time I decided to write something. If you can get out of this episode with a couple of ideas that can help your writing, I guess I’ve done my job correctly.

10:15
So let’s start with the first step. And that is thinking thinking is vital to writing before, during and even after the writing activity. All successful writers are successful thinkers, the finished product of their thinking is the writing itself. When the writing is read by its intended audience, it leads to even more thinking, a thought is expressed in language words arranged in a certain way for a certain meaning, and language provokes even more thought, which in turn provokes more language, and so on. It goes on and on endlessly. Successful writers have developed many strategies to sharpen their thinking, particularly in the early stages of writing classical rhetoricians. called such strategies invention, meaning roughly to invent subject matter, the term is apt not only because it means to create something new, but also because it describes a process in which discovery is fundamental, important information or detail is discovered one way or another through some methodical procedures such as library research, experimental research, brainstorming, systematic questioning, or free writing. Some of these procedures involve putting words down on paper, but the thinking element still dominates. A student engaged in free writing, for example, doesn’t pause to read and contemplate what has been written down the idea is to generate material that can be read later. Now I will talk in more details about free writing and some other invention techniques in the coming writing episodes. So don’t worry about this. We will cover a lot of ground in the coming episodes. All I want you to underline And now is the general idea behind those techniques. Now as writers proceed in their thinking they begin to eliminate some possibilities and add others. This selecting and rejecting process can be described as early planning a kind of mental stop taking that often takes the form of physical writing activity, such as listing or doodling rough outlining or sketching. Though other people might not be able to read and make sense out of such writing, the writer can and is therefore about ready to move into the drafting reading stage. Now other writers near the end of the invention stage may be more sure of what they want to cover and in what order thus they may make detailed outlines now roughly at this stage of composing. Most writers move into drafting and reading or drafting and reading stage is a little bit different. drafting is the physical writing activity of trying to put words on On paper in some meaningful order now I include reading in this stage though it is important in all subsequent stages as well because most riders read what they draft and react to it as they write, often making changes or choosing alternative wordings as they proceed, or some writers who are drafting read less than others. But the proof that most drafts are read while being composed can be seen in a handwritten draft that has several Mark outs, cross overs, interpolations and corrections. drafting writers must make decisions which example to use, which words will best express the point whether or not a sentence is clear and so on. Though no such decision may be final at this stage, it still must be made. It is often during drafting that a writer discovers exactly how to organize the writing. The first paragraph written may eventually turn out to work better in the conclusion than in the introduction, but do drafting that doesn’t matter because the only time a piece of writing ought to have an orderly beginning, middle and end is when it’s finished ready for its target readers. What is important at this stage is to get it all written down, reading and tinkering as you go until it is complete, then read it again to see if it seems to fit together. And now it’s time for the writer to share the draft with other readers, classmates or friends should read the drafts carefully and respond with criticisms and suggestions for improvement. Once these criticisms and suggestions are heard, the successful writer takes them into account and begins to write again this time to revise so as to produce the best possible version. Now we come to the step of revising and editing. Now the word revision means receiving or seeing again, a writer who is revising is literally seeing again and putting the results of that new site to work in an improved paper revising can be massive, moderate or minimal depending on the results of the writers earlier drafting efforts and the reactions of not only the writer but also others who have read the drafts. Whether or not the revision is extensive is still involves thought and it still involves drafting and reading. Once the revisions are made. The writer again shares the writing with other readers as a way to see whether the revisions worked and as a final check that the substance or content of the writing is as it should be. This second round of responses is often called editing for professional writers. It is at this point that serious final corrections and adjustments in content are made before publication for student writers this second round of responses should serve a similar purpose. After these changes, only such mechanical errors as spelling, punctuation and usage should be remained for the proofreading part of the process. And now we come to the last step and that is proofreading. proofreading is polishing the final manuscript to make it as neat and presentable as possible. It is now that the writer should make sure that words are spelled correctly. And all subjects and predicates in all sentences agree in number that all pronouns have clear reference and so on. The standard printing conventions are brought to bear as criteria for the manuscript, which the writer wants to be as ready as possible for publication as it is professional writers have proofreading help and sometimes students may to depending on the teacher’s policy, or most teachers want their students to become good Proof Readers and therefore don’t authorize outside proofing. In any case, students writers should work to become good Proof Readers of their own work. After all, most teachers give their highest grades to papers that are excellent not only in content and organization But also in manuscript form, and all professional publishers seek to print work that is as flawless in matters of form as they can humanly make it. The result of good proofreading is the equivalent of appropriate dress just as you want to dress appropriately for a job interview, or perhaps a celebratory event, so you want your writing to be appropriately dressed for its best possible appearance. What’s important to remember and a little sad is that many student writers have long believed that proofreading correctness is the most important thing about their writing. And their worries about correctness have inhibited their growth as good writers. Too much concern about correctness in the early stages of the writing process can short circuit the whole effort and reinforce negative stereotypes about writing.

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So I will stop here today. And next time, I will talk in more details about the purposes for writing. And trust me, this is very important. We’ll get later to that. techniques and we will talk about how to write paragraphs specific kind of paragraphs and essays. We’ll talk about techniques and words you might want to use to connect your sentences to make your writing as cohesive as possible, we will get to that. But the fundamental thing about writing is to get back to the very beginning to the very basics. Why are you writing? Who are you writing to? And who are you as a writer? What exactly do you want to achieve as a writer? All these questions should be more important to understand before you even start to write because when you understand these things, the writing will be a matter of practice, and you will be perfect. So thank you very much for listening to me today. And I hope you find this writing episode useful. And I hope you came up with a couple of ideas you might want to consider the next time you want to write something before I go, let me remind you that there is a very short and sweet who is that you can take to make Sure you understood most of the things we talked about today, and trust me that will help you remember what we talked about a lot better. All you need to do is to click on the link you can find in the description of this episode, and you’re good to go. This is your host Danny saying thank you very much for listening to me today, and I’ll see you again tomorrow in a new episode from perfect English podcast.

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