Research Writer Interview With Stephanie
Good Writing Organization And Management
Out of all those topics, which is your favorite?
Political topics are definitely my favorite! I have a personal interest in politics and have experience with both grassroots organizing and lobbying, which gives me – I think – a unique perspective. In addition, I’m currently pursuing a degree in International Relations, which means I not only have academic experience, but I enjoy the subjects enough that I decided to study them personally.
Are you willing to accept projects not related to your favorite topics?
Absolutely! I enjoy research and learning so much, I’m always willing to take on projects that don’t fall within my “favorites” category. I generally enjoy Social Science topics of any kind and have quite a bit of experience writing about them.
Describe your research process.
I always start by searching academic journals. Finding good data is my favorite part of the research process. Once you have good data, the rest is pretty easy. I rarely use news or other media outlets for research, unless I’m simply looking for information on public opinion. Once I’ve found a few good academic resources, I start looking for commonalities. I’m a pretty good strategist, so it’s easy for me to see how information from various sources can fit together into one good article or paper. I also look for a “hook”, for lack of a better word. Academic writing is so much more compelling when it teaches us something new or unusual, so I’m always on the look out for those odd pieces of information.
How good are you at time management?
I’m GREAT at time management! I have to be. Between my job, my educational pursuits and.. well… just wanting to have a “life,” I have to organize and manage my time well. For this reason, I’m careful not to take on too many projects at one time. That can be hard to do, especially when there are so many subjects that I love to write about! But taking on too much isn’t fair to me, nor is it fair to my clients. They deserve well-researched, well-written projects that are delivered on time, and if I’m doing too much at once, either the quality or timeliness of the project is going to suffer.
What advice do you have for students struggling to write academic papers?
Don’t give up! I truly believe that just about anyone can learn to write a good, well-researched academic paper. It just takes a little longer for some people to learn how. Don’t get discouraged. Give yourself plenty of time to write and re-write (in other words, don’t wait until the night before a paper is due to get started). Most colleges and universities have Writing Centers designed to help students learn how to write well. It’s a great resource!
Random writer: /writer-janet