just start

Refine and complete that piece of writing

This time the focus is on motivation and ways you can boost your writing. Fiction (and non-fiction) writers often read good writing as a way of improving their own.

Have you ever thought of offering to be an editor of a journal? 

This gives access to such a range of scholarly work in your interest areas. You get the opportunity to review and comment on it as a peer, either in collaboration with other reviewers, or not, depending on the journal’s practices.

Professor Philip Bourne studied in Adelaide and was founding dean of the School of Data Science at the University of Virginia in the U.S. He has produced 10 ideas for getting published and this was Number 8. The first suggestion was to learn from the good and less good work others have written.  So without being an official reviewer, you become one for your own reasons anyway.

Which other counter-intuitive writing tips are helpful?

Professor Bourne also recommends that you begin to write on the day you first have an idea for your research questions. While it might seem too early, this helps to set the scope and develop your hypothesis-driven arguments (and your literature review becomes very focused as a result).

Chris Smith, a writing coach and founder of Prolifiko, agrees, “…you might feel you can’t continue without more research but ask yourself: can I make a small start now? What’s really stopping me? Then run an experiment – try to write and see what happens.”

Other ideas include writing less, spending less time writing and more on thinking. Importantly, your process is yours and will change over time. What works for others may not be for you, or might not suit right now. But some of these ideas how to make your writing time more productive could be worth trying.

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