Okay, no, that’s obviously a lie, but there are certainly days that writing and I have a love/hate relationship. And, I know there are many who do hate it. If you hate writing, you’re not alone. A lot of people hate writing. It’s time consuming, and it can be just flat out hard whether you are like me and love it or like most people and don’t. Something I certainly share with those who hate writing is that, on the days writing and I are hating on each other, I have problems actually putting words on the page. So in that way, we’re quite similar.
If you hate writing, you may never like it, and I can’t give you a magic formula to make you love it. But if it was a little bit easier for you, you might hate it a little less. So here are a few facts to remember that may make all writing (story, essay, letter, or report) just a little bit easier.
Writing is communication!
The only reasons we write are 1) to communicate our thoughts and stories to another person and 2) to preserve our thoughts and stories. Writing is your moment to be heard.
Because writing is communicating your thoughts, the best way to make writing easier is to think something. You have to think to be able to write. Once you think something, you just have to translate that thought into words, sentences, and paragraphs, which will lead you to a whole story, article, or paper for your professor. Thinking will save you a lot of that time you spend staring at the screen.
Thinking is evaluating or analyzing the world around you. You look, hear, touch, taste, and smell. Then, you make value judgments:
- Do you like it/hate it?
- Is it useful?
- Does it affect you/others?
- Is it part of something else?
- How does it work?
- Why does it work?
- What can it do?
- Why do you care?
Questions like these are a fundamental part of thinking.
Types of Thinking
Did you know there are different types of thinking? There are. Basically, the differences in types of thinking are in how we form our opinions.
Reasoning – reasoning is just another word for thinking, and it implies that there are reasons for our decisions and beliefs.
- Inductive = specific —-> general
- Deductive = general ——> specific
Inductive reasoning involves knowing a specific truth then applying it to other situations, concepts, or items.
- For example, let’s say you get bit by a dog, it hurts because dogs have sharp teeth that break your skin, and you learn: Dog bites hurt.
- Then you realize that: Other animals and even fish and insects have teeth too.
- You really don’t want to chance getting bit by them either, so you decide: Bites hurt.
You’ve just used inductive reasoning because you went from specific (dog bites) to general (all bites).
Deductive reasoning involves knowing general truths then applying them to specific situations, concepts, or items.
- For example, your favorite restaurant serves great food, and you’ve never had anything bad from this restaurant, so you know: Giacomo’s serves great food.
- You go in one day and realize that: Giacomo’s is now serving Lobster Ravioli.
- So even before you eat it, you decide: Giacomo’s Lobster Ravioli is great.
You just used deductive reasoning because you went from general (all of Giacomo’s food) to specific (Giacomo’s lobster ravioli).
These very basic, simple ways of thinking are how many of our ideas are formed. We consider information then draw conclusions about other areas based on similarities and differences.
Thinking is the foundation of writing. If you can master thinking, you will find writing much easier (possibly even enjoyable…though I hope that is the case, I can’t guarantee that).
No thinking = no writing and a completely dreadful process.
To communicate, you must have something to say. So think…and think again.