September, 2009

This Month's Issue

Tips of the Month
Acing College Composition Courses
New at Nonfiction Writing Guide


Welcome to Getting it Write. If you are a new subscriber, you will find tips, articles and opportunities for improving your writing skills. Been with us a while? We're so glad you're here.

This month, we are focusing on capturing ideas and succeeding in college writing courses. We'll also take a look at what's new on Nonfiction Writing Guide, including information about writing for the web.

So, let's get started, shall we!

5 Tips for Getting Inspired

  1. Nurture your inherent curiousity.
  2. If you are naturally curious, indulge your desire to know more about whatever subject or subjects catch your fancy. In doing so, you are filling your wells of knowledge and creativity.

  3. Pay attention.
  4. Be aware of the world around you. Watch people. Read a lot. Notice details. If you struggle with this, don't worry, it gets easier with practice.

  5. Carry writing materials with you.
  6. This seems like a no-brainer, but it's amazing how many writers don't carry pen and paper with them. Even just an index card or two can do the trick for catching a stray idea on the go. It could be the idea.

  7. Eavesdrop.
  8. Of course, be discreet. And don't eavesdrop on people you know. You might hear things you don't want to hear. Instead, listen in on the conversations of strangers on trains and in restaurants. Learn what people are talking about. It will give you a wealth of ideas to draw from.

  9. Manage your stress.
  10. When you are stressed, you cannot tap into that part of you that sees ideas around every corner. Take time to meditate, breathe deep and relax. You will notice the payoff almost immediately.

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Acing College Composition

It's back to school time.

Are you in your first semester of college? If so, congratulations and welcome to a whole new world. College is nothing like high school, especially the composition courses.

Your first composition class can be intimidating. You wonder if you are a good enough writer to pass the class. And what the professor expects.

Here are a few things you can do to make passing college composition easier:

Read the syllabus. Then read it again.
This document is your chance to understand what your professor wants from you this semester. If the syllabus includes grading rubrics, play close attnetion to these. Each rubric is a description of what you need to include in each assignment you submit. Nail the rubrics, nail the class.

Read, read, read.
Like the syllabus, the reading assignments can give clues to what direction your written assigments should take. If you read a lot of essays about a particular subject or ideal, then your writing needs to reflect your understanding of these things.

Ask a lot of questions.
Yes, you might feel dumb at first, but your professor will see it as a desire to learn. Additionally, you will get a better understanding of the material, which makes writing easier.

Take your time.
Don't leave every assignment until the last minute. Some you will, it's inevitable. But try your best to work your writing into your schedule so that you can do adequate research and outlining before completing that final project.

College composition classes are demanding, sure. But they are no more or less so than most other courses you will take in your college career. Keep in mind that your professor is human, just like you, and that if you run into any problems, you can ask for help. So, do your best, but don't sweat it. You'll be fine.

At the end of the semester, you'll probably look back on the nervous way you approached the class and wonder what all the fuss was about. Until then, best of luck and happy writing.

Don't forget to check out the our FREE Press Release Writing E-course?

Sign up to learn the fundamentals of creating press releases that get printed and get results.

New at Nonfiction Writing Guide

Writing for the Web Ever wanted to learn more about putting your words online? Get the scoop on blogging, article writing and more for an internet audience.

Writing the How To Article Here is a step-by-step guide for writing how-to articles, whether it is for print or online publication. You can adapt the method for your topic.

Web Writing - Keep it Short Unlike print, what you write for the web has to get attention quick and be easy to read in minutes. To this end, learn to keep your work short and to the point.

Thank you for subscribing to Getting it Write, the free e-zine for Nonfiction Writing Guide. Next month, you will learn tips for researching and how to manage that ever-tricky business memo.
See you next time!


Mary Klaebel