F. Writing Process of a Paragraph

(Notes by Huifang Peng)
1. understanding and analyzing the assignment
* tips: ask yourself the following questions and try to answer them  
--What is the topic
--Why am I writing?
--Where do I get the information?
--How long is the paper?
--When is it due?
--How do I present it?
2. brainstorming (to write down all kinds of ideas that are related to your assignment; no need to worry about your grammar at this stage)
* tips: 
--working with others to search for more ideas
--using a mind map, columns, or free-writing to write down your ideas    
3. organizing your ideas by doing the following steps:
--writing the topic sentence: choosing your controlling idea and narrowing down your topic
--eliminating irrelevant ideas: so as to have unity  
--making an outline and adding relevant ideas: you might want to add some additional ideas in the body part. A good way to add and organize your additional ideas into major or minor supporting sentences is to make an outline for your paragraph.  
* No need to use complete sentences and worry about your grammar at this stage. 
4. writing the first draft: Try to turn the ideas in the outline into complete sentences and in good paragraph format. As you will refine and probably change the paragraph later, there is no need to worry too much about grammar or punctuation at this stage. 
5. rewriting the first draft: rewriting usually consists of two parts
a. revising: changing your writing. "You revise when you have new ideas, information or facts, or when you want to make your writing clearer. You may need to change, add or delete words or sentences, or move sentences to a different place in the paragraph" (FOW2, p. 45).
* helpful tips: check if your paragraph has good unity, coherence, and cohesion; also check if you have enough minor supporting ideas for the major supporting sentences. 
* You might have to rewrite your paragraph and even modify your outline again and again to reach a best organization. 
b. editing: focusing on your grammar, spelling, word forms, capitalization, and punctuation.  
* Ideally, edit your paragraph only after you have finished the revising work and are sure about the final organization of your paragraph.  
6. writing the final draft: before you turn in your final draft, make sure yours is a clean version with good paragraph format.   
Focus on Writing 2 
Writing to Communicate 2: Chapter 3