You let out a deep sigh as you feel the heavy weight of dread in your gut, and your entire attitude fades to black. It's as if someone has pulled a dark veil over your formerly sunny outlook.
Okay, maybe that's a BIT dramatic. But for many of us, writing the essay is a task that takes more gumption just to begin than to actually complete.
We have now been assigned Written Task 2, which is the formal essay. If that isn't punishment enough, we also must include an outline with it to clarify for ourselves and our reader just what we are supposed to be focusing on in our paper (thus providing a possible highlight of where we have fallen short!)
Now, now, now. Writing the essay doesn't have to be such a downer. In fact, it can become something you look forward to! (Okay, maybe that's taking it a bit too far). At the very least, it can be a challenge you are ready and able to meet.
Like anything else worth doing, writing takes what I like to refer to as the three P's: perseverance, passion and patience. You need to eliminate the idea of "trying my best" and substitute that notion with "I will DO my best." Do not even entertain the notion of "this will be hard" or "I cannot do this well," or "my teacher will hate this." Do not put it off until the last minute or it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy of doom.
Instead, set aside a quiet space, do some relaxation breathing like we learned in class, and ELIMINATE DISTRACTIONS. Silence your phone. Do not allow yourself to text friends or scope out Facebook. It's just you, some paper (or a screen) and words. Take some time to go through your notes and quotes, and begin the process of writing. Don't put the pressure of editing or grammar on yourself at this stage. Writing is a process. Allow your subconscious creativity to flow first, uninhibited. You can fix it all later.
Write something YOU like. Don't think about me (aka your teacher), or anyone else. Take your topic, and write about it in an interesting way that appeals to you and reflects your writing style.
Writing the essay may never be your favorite thing to do, but at the very least it doesn't have to be a punishment. Take some time to read this article about "Writing the Essay." The tips are awesome, I think. Drink them in, and come ready to attack Written Task 2....