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Fishing for a Topic?

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Most of the students enrolled in Writing Workshop want to improve their writing. Some want to improve style, others want to improve skill. For whatever reason students have joined the class, they all need to have a topic for each paper that they write. Some students decide to choose their own topic while others use one that has been suggested. Neither option is incorrect, but both have pros and cons that should be considered before students begin to write.

When a student chooses a topic that is important to her, the quality of the paper instantly increases; because she is interested in what she is writing, she will put more thought and effort into her paper in order to really force the reader to understand what she means. The only danger to choosing a topic that has a special significance is that the writer often speeds through the paper and does not put in enough detail to support her claims. Because she knows exactly what she wants to say, she may not include an appropriate explanation because she assumes that the reader will understand her meaning. A writer needs to ensure that someone can comprehend her paper from another point of view. If this third party would not be able to understand something, that part of the paper should be rewritten or sufficient detail should be included. When fishing for a topic, a writer should choose something significant in order to simplify the writing process, but needs to carefully reread the paper before submission.

When a student chooses a topic herself, she guarantees herself that she has in interest in the topic. However, when a student decides to write using a suggested topic, she may not always be able to provide personal experience. However, the best way to improve one’s writing is to challenge one’s writing ability. When a writer forces herself to write a paper on something that does not carry a special significance, she challenges herself to think and write in new and creative ways. Eventually, these skills will extend to all areas of writing, and the student will see her papers begin to improve. This improvement may not be evident in the first paper, but will definitely develop within the next few. By writing on a given topic, students will learn to creatively express their thoughts and properly word their papers. By choosing to write papers on given topics, students may lack the motivation and personal experience necessary to write the paper, but they will ultimately see an improvement in writing technique.

The most difficult part of Writing Workshop is choosing a topic on which to write. By choosing her own topic, a student will write a paper that is important to her personally, which usually ensures that the paper will be of good quality. She just has to be careful that she includes enough detail so that the writing is clear and concise. Students that write on given topics challenge themselves by writing about unfamiliar things. These students will slowly improve their writing skills and ultimately produce better papers. No matter what a student chooses to write about or how she chooses her topic, as long as she inputs the proper amount of effort, she can guarantee that she will write a quality paper.

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