How much rewriting you do on the computer screen before you print out the paper for the next step in revision is going to depend on how comfortable you are reading text on the computer screen. Most writers find it too easy to skip over problems on the monitor and they need to have copy in hand, literally, to catch all their errors. Other writers, however, have become so comfortable in their use of the computer that the keyboard and screen have become an extension of their mind even more so than a pencil or ballpoint pen can be and on-the-screen manipulation of text becomes second nature. It is probably a matter of practice, but some writers will always want to move quickly to the next step of working with paper copy.
Only one of John's revised paragraphs is copied above, but he made extensive changes to all of the other part of his essay, including the introduction and the conclusion.
TIP 3: Revision means looking again at what we have written to see how we can improve it. Some of us start revising as soon as we begin a rough draft restructuring and rearranging sentences as we work out our ideas. Then we return to the draft, perhaps several times, to make further revisions. Revising is an opportunity to reconsider our topic, our readers, even our purpose for writing. Taking the time to rethink our approach may encourage us to make major changes in the content and structure of our work.
So, you’ve finished writing your essay? But, it’s not over yet! All writing is as much about revising as creating. If you want those good results, give the revising and editing process the time attention it deserves. Following are some revising and editing checklists and some procedural tips to help you focus on:
An essay like this -- reporting information -- is only as good asits sources. Of your goals in this essay is to let readers know thatyour sources are reputable. One way to do this is by establishing theircredibility early in the essay. See suggestions below for a how-to.
A second part of revising this essay involves explaining your quotesby making connections back to your topic sentence and thesis. Considerthe paragraph below that was cited above. Note how repetition used tokeep the reader focused and refer back to the thesis and division.
ALWAYS check verb tense.
Finally, another Brilliant Tip:
Remember that ALL teacher-
suggested revisions must be
made before submitting the
final draft, as failure to revise
will significantly reduce your grade.
Here's another Brilliant Tip:
If your integration is a complete sentence, use a colon not a comma.
Ex: Hester's past never stops coming back to hurt her
"She knew that her deed had been evil" (Hawthorne 82).
Revised SL Essay
DUE Day 1 of next week;
Print revised copy and
hand in both versions!
If, in the course of editing and rewriting your paper, you have occasion to use proofreading symbols or need to know what those symbols mean, a handy is available as part of this guide.
Share your paper with a friendly editor, someone who has your interests at heart and who has the time to review your paper carefully and who is willing to ask questions and to challenge what you said and how you said it. This person should be a friend, but not too much of a friend. After all, you're hoping for useful criticism here. Girlfriends, boyfriends, and parents make notoriously bad editors; they think whatever you write is wonderful, not to be improved. This is no time for coddling on their part or defensiveness on yours. This person is not to rewrite your paper for you, but you can hope he or she will catch an occasional glitch in punctuation or lapse in reasoning. The main purpose of this "outside editor," though, is to challenge your argument. Does the paper really make sense, is the argument sound? After all, you know what a sentence or paragraph meant and that means you are less apt to catch a confusing phrase or momentary lapse in the argument than someone else would be. If possible, watch your editor's face for confused looks or glazed eyes as he or she goes through your paper. It might mean that clarification is called for, that you skipped over something in your development, or that you've gone too far. Before he or she goes over your paper, it might be helpful to this outside editor to have a list of the kinds of things that have given you trouble in the past or the things that your instructor is apt to look for. Share a copy of the with your outside editor or use the more extensive provided below.
Once John started revising his essay, it was difficult for him to stop. He kept noticing more and more things about his essay that he thought he could make better. That's good. John thought that he had a good first draft of his essay, but the revision process made it clear to him just how much better it could be.
This kind of specific detail -- and the careful setting up of quotes-- help make an essay engaging and informative. Your goal now is tolook through your own essay for places where more specific examples canbe found.
Notice how well John addressed those aspects of his essay that he identified as needing improvement as he began the revising process. In particular, he has given his paragraph a good focus, has described parts of the photograph more vividly, has added some transitional words and phrases, has cut down on his overuse of "is," has used longer and more varied sentences, and has made his paragraph more interesting by using better wording.