Counterarguments: Friend or Foe?

by Hailey Hanks

Paper assignments often get more challenging as the semester progresses. You might feel fairly comfortable writing essays based on personal experiences, but the transition into more research-based or argumentative papers can be difficult. You may be asked to incorporate more research than you’re used to. For tips on researching, see Jacky Killian’s recent blog post.

Continue reading “Counterarguments: Friend or Foe?”

Using Mindfulness Overcoming Writing Stress

by Chelsea Mathes 

Writing apprehension happens for many reasons including bad past experiences with writing, “negative self-talk”, and perfectionism (Britt et al. 694). Unfortunately, these negative behaviors only make students more nervous about writing which directly affects their grades (Britt et al. 694).

Continue reading “Using Mindfulness Overcoming Writing Stress”

Writing: How to Begin (to Write Your Way Out)

by Lauren Sheppard

blank-brainstorming-business-6357You may have read Jacky Killian’s recent post “Research: How to Begin.” Well, think of this post as its sequel. Perhaps you have gathered all of your evidence now; perhaps you feel the weight of the next step, writing, resting on your shoulders; perhaps you are sitting staring at a blank screen; and perhaps the empty Word document is taunting you. Continue reading “Writing: How to Begin (to Write Your Way Out)”

How to Read an Essay Prompt

by Madelyn Chambers

apple-class-conference-7102We’ve all been there before: you’ve had class with a professor all semester, but you just can’t seem to understand what they want you to do. Their essay prompts don’t look like they’re asking anything specific. You can’t even find a question on the prompt that you’re supposed to answer. What do you do? Continue reading “How to Read an Essay Prompt”

Research: How to Begin

by Jacky Killian



An imposing word. An imperative for academic writing. And for science. And history. And business. Research is a cornerstone of writing no matter what major or field a person is in. It can be conducted poorly or conducted well. Woe unto the poorly conducted research and those who practice it, for their house of arguments and analyses will fall apart when the inspector knocks on the door.  

How does one conduct research well?  Continue reading “Research: How to Begin”

Using Transitions to Make Your Paper Flow


Transitions link ideas, sentences, and paragraphs together. Without them, your writing can feel disconnected or maybe even clunky. So, if you’ve just drafted an essay but feel like you jump from one paragraph to the next, a simple way to fix that can be by adding transition words or phrases.  Continue reading “Using Transitions to Make Your Paper Flow”

If You Think Writing Is Hard, Read This

by Brian Baker


During my time as a writing tutor and as a writer myself, I’ve come to an uncomfortable realization, as have many of the students I’ve worked with: writing is hard. It’s crazy hard.

The sad part is that many students don’t recognize the source of the difficulty. They mistakenly think that writing is hard because they are incapable. This simply isn’t true. Writing is hard because it’s writing, not because you suck at it.   Continue reading “If You Think Writing Is Hard, Read This”