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Research Writer Interview With Ralph

I Teach A Lot Of Academic Subjects


Recently Custom Papers has interviewed one of its newest writers, Ralph, on his views regarding writing for CustomPapers, writing academic papers, and the subject of freelance writing overall.


Hello Ralph. So, how long have you been writing academic essays? What kind of work do you like to do?

I've been writing as long as I can remember. On of my earliest recollections is writing a lot of science fiction short stories when I was in junior high school English. I think I was influenced a lot by Rod Serling, Buck Houghton and the whole Twilight Zone thing back then. As a matter of fact, one of the short stories I just finished is based on an idea I first wrote on when I was about 14 years old. So, it's been percolating a long time!

But writing is not what you have done for a living most of your life, right?

Right. Well, I guess that's true up to a point. I currently teach at a university but it's in the area of music. I teach a lot of the academic subjects like theory, history, orchestration and so forth. I also teach some private instrumental instruction and ensembles, but my main focus is on the hard-core academic classes. I have also taught high school but in all my teaching I have always thought that helping kids learn to write better was one of the most important things that I could do. Kids don't write (or read, for that matter) nearly enough. As a result most of the work that I see in my classes is dreadful. A lot of it, though, isn't the fault of the student; the teachers they have had simply haven't assigned them enough writing. So, overall, kids just don't write very much or very well. And that's tragic because somewhere down the road it's going to cost them dearly in whatever line of work they find. I guess you could say that I haven't written for a living as a general rule, but I've written an awful lot over the course of my teaching career. I have essays published as part of book anthologies and I currently write for the Music Educator's National Conference as one of their book reviewers. I hope, in the future when I retire from the university (which should be soon), that I can devote myself to writing full-time and also try to get some of my more creative stuff published. We'll see.

How has your experience with us been so far?

At first it was a little touch-and-go. I think that the sales and support people and I didn't communicate as effectively as we could, but, from my point of view, it wasn't necessarily a big deal. Things like that happen when you're first starting a new freelance writing job on a contract basis. Now that I think I have a handle on the procedures, I've relaxed a little bit and things seem to be going very smoothly. Probably Miriam and Erika particularly were thinking "This guy must be mentally deficient" sometimes because I was asking questions that I probably should have been able to figure out on my own! But, as the newbie, I just wanted to be sure I was doing everything correctly. I'll probably still be a little up-tight for a while about the papers. I know my writing is okay, but, having dealt with the public in retailing for a while (that was another life), I know that some people can be unreasonable sometimes. I just want to give my assigned clients the best product I can deliver and hope it meets their expectations. So, I guess until I get a few more under my belt, I'll feel a little apprehensive that some client will complain that they were hoping to get William Manchester or Barbara Tuchman to write their paper, and they got me instead!

Is there anything that we can do to improve your experience?

Actually, no. The truth is that the support people have been great; much more than I ever hoped to get from any contract writing position.



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