Chances are if you went to public school in the U.S. in the past decade, you’ve seen a “Writing Cycle” chart like the one to the right.  It may be simplistic enough for a middle schooler to understand, but therein lies the genius behind the writing cycle.

Writing is a cyclical endeavor.  The writing cycle that hung on your middle school English teacher’s wall, while overly simplified, creates a visual reminder that writing is not “done” after the drafting stage.  In fact, I would add reverse arrows between the writing stages to indicate that you are never “done” with any one stage.

I’ve heard students state that thought they were “done” with a paper because they reached a required word count only to discover they had just begun the writing process.  In fact, at least half of the time you spend on your paper should be in the revising stage.

The Writing Center is here to help with all stages of the writing cycle, but it can be particularly helpful to come see the same or different tutors multiple times for the same paper.  Tutors can help with identifying areas of concern after you’ve reached that all important word count requirement.  For example, they can help strengthen your thesis, organize your paragraphs for a stronger argument, or strengthen the structure of your paragraphs.  Sometimes different areas of concern may be addressed at different times in the revising stage.  Therefore, it is incredibly helpful to visit the Writing Center early and often.

Revision is not just a necessity for academic writing. All writers, whether they are Stephen King or JK Rowling, spend their time rewriting, revising, and revisiting their drafts.

Come to the Writing Center today, tomorrow, and next week to take advantage of our tutors and the magic that is revising.