Research Writer Interview With Carol
Winning Essays And Papers
Hi Carol! How long have you been an academic research writer?
The first papers I wrote were my own school papers. Then, almost 20 years ago, I was a professional math and chemistry tutor for college students. I found it hard to teach them math and chemistry because most of them were stressed out over what seemed, to them, to be a growing mountain of papers. I either had to help them with their papers or they were going to lose all of their classes and maybe even drop out of school.
What subjects do you prefer?
My first college experience was in nursing. I found that I did not like the work, but loved the writing. With over 20 years experience, I am now competent to write in any branch of medicine. My undergraduate work was in Mathematics, with a minor in Sociology. That takes care of math, chemistry, physics, computer science, sociology, social work, history and education. While I was in school, I worked summers, as a writer, for attorneys and for a private investigator. So I am competent to write in the legal fields. Then, I ended up in the Philosophy and Religion departments in graduate school. That pretty much rounded out my educational career and expanded my areas of writing competency yet again. As for which areas do I prefer? I really have no preference. I love working with the students and am open to both learning from them and to offering them what I know - about their topic, or about writing college essays or term papers in general.
Do you prefer to custom-write undergraduate, graduate, or post-graduate papers?
I really like them all. My graduate and post-graduate students tend to become life-long friends because we are together for so long. The smaller undergraduate papers give me a sense of instant gratification because they can be finished in a short period of time. Everybody likes the feeling of having a "quick success," especially when they are involved in several projects that take a long time to bring to fruition.
Do you have any problems writing papers from scratch for students?
Believe it or not, it is very seldom that I write a paper, literally, from scratch, although it may look as if that is the case, even to the student. Nine times out of ten, undergraduate students have already custom-written at least something by the time they ask for help. It may not be much, but it is "something." I take what they have and create a successful paper around it. If they haven't written anything, they can still talk to me, or e-mail me, and tell me what they want to say. I take what they have said and create an essay around that.
Graduate and post-graduate students are a little different. Some have very little written and fall into the category above. Others need between 50 and 100 pages total. They then e-mail me hundreds of pages of thesis or dissertation "pieces" and overnight mail me hundreds of articles. It is up to me, then, to cut all of that down and make it say what they want it to say; and let's remember that graduate and post-graduate students are doing very real and valuable research. I cannot do anybody's research for them; but I can help them put their narrative in a format that will be acceptable to their university's graduate school.
No matter their level (undergraduate, graduate, or post-graduate), it always amuses me when the student exclaims, and "That's exactly what I would have written!" Well - of course it is. This isn't magic! I let them give their paper to me, in whatever form. All I do is help them write it down and/or clean it up.
So I take it that you like what you do?
[smile] I've done this for almost 25 years. I wouldn't be doing it still if it did not give me a sense of personal and professional satisfaction, or if I didn't feel as though I am helping students get over the rough spots.
Random writer: /4/writer-mitch