When it comes to writing academic essays chances are you want to make the process as efficient as possible. This isn’t to say you want to take shortcuts that may lower the quality of your work, but rather that you don’t want to overspend time and energy when there are better ways to complete your work while maintaining high writing standards. Here are some tips to follow for efficient essay writing:
Creating a timeline before you get started will let you organize the amount of time you have to spend on each phase of writing. From research, to drafting to making final edits, develop a plan that allows for unexpected delays as well as time to take breaks. Try to stick to the plan as much as possible to maximize efficiency.
It’s a good idea to make sure you have everything collected before you start your work. Too often students will have some notes when they start writing then have to stop because they forgot to review some sources they found at the library. Get everything collected using either index cards, a subject notebook, or even loose leaf paper – as long as you keep it all in front of you when you start.
The importance of creating an outline can never be stressed enough. Writers of every level use outlines to organize thoughts, paper flow, and logic. Your final paper may be different from what you put down in your outline – and that’s okay – but you still want some guidance when you write that first draft. Your outline can be as detailed or as rough as you’d like, just make sure you have all of your major points organized.
It’s always a good idea to get all of your ideas down on paper as quickly and as efficiently as possible. Your first draft doesn’t need to be pristine; you’ll have plenty of opportunities in later drafts to make corrections. So don’t stop to fix every little spelling, grammar or punctuation mistake you make along the way. Your writing should flow naturally without the challenge of needing to be perfect.
Writing experts will all say that you are more likely to find small mistakes if you approach each draft with a fresh set of eyes. This means not having to read sentence or whole paragraph two or three times before finding what may only be a small punctuation error. Revising and editing with fresh eyes is to do so efficiently; and efficient writing is the name of the game.