Field of Science

Three Pieces of Advice I've found useful for writing up

It has been a month now since I've embarked on the whole writing up process. Before I started, I asked around for advice from other people who've gone through the same experience. So here is a list of the tips that I've found useful:-

Start with the Results section, and the rest will write itself
This piece of advice has been given by a number of people, likely because it is good advice. The data is the story of the paper, and starting off writing by familiarising oneself with it is a good way to see what shape the rest of the paper will turn out. Once I got that done, the methods section could be constructed accurately, and from their discussion and introduction are a downhill slope.

Do not get distracted, immerse yourself in the writing process
This piece of advice was given by a number of students who took full time work while writing up, and told me that it was not the best idea, and to not do it if possible. The words "Living Hell" were often used. I'm glad I took this advice. Whilst I've had to reduce my expenses a lot, It also means that I don't have to worry about getting distracted. Living on a diet of lentils and bread is worth that at least.

Don't be a perfectionist, Just bloody get on with it
This is probably the last bit of advice I would expect to get, but it is the kind of advice that I can see myself giving... about blogging. The first draft of any of my writing is not going to be the best. When I'm writing something for the first time, I have no idea what the best structure is for presenting my ideas. I may agonize over the wording of a single sentence, only to find that that beautifully constructed sentence fits better elsewhere, and should probably have been split into two sentences anyway. The process of writing changes the way you write, so when you are finished and look at your work, it's going to be crushingly uneven anyway. So why waste time?
Write like you're digging for the gold at the bottom of your keyboard, and you can sift out the precious nuggets from the slag afterwards, and if you are truly talented, you can arrange them into pleasing jewellery. There's no need to make the process of digging harder for yourself.

Now I'd better get back to my thesis. It gets angry if I don't pay attention to it.

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