Tag Archives: Writing-Process

Prewriting |All You Need To Know About Identifying Your Writing Purpose and Audience

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Writing becomes easier when you have all the fundamental steps in place. This encompasses finding out who your audience is and what purpose to serve them.

In my previous post on prewriting, I talked about The Technique You Can Use to Find and Focus on a Writing Topic.This post is an extension or continuation of that post. It still talks about making your writing more specific or focused.

It is part of your duty as a writer to identify your writing purpose and your audience before you go ahead to gather materials or make research to help you work on your topic.

What purpose do you want your topic to serve?

Every piece of writing has a primary reason why it is written. This reason serves as the main purpose of the writing. A piece of writing can serve the following purpose; Explain, inform,  persuade, amuse, entertain,  narrate or describe.

How do you identify your purpose?

You can point out your purpose by asking yourself the following questions;

What do I want to do with this topic?

– Do I want to describe someone or something?

– Do I want to inform my readers about a topic or to explain something about it?

– Do I want to persuade my readers to change their minds about something or take action?

– Do I want to entertain or amuse them?

Your answer will certainly point to your writing purpose.

A topic may have multiple purposes but the fewer they are the better so that your writing can be more precise and thereby more effective.


Who is your audience?


Your audience is the people you are writing for, or, the people you want to pass your idea or message across to. When you know who your audience is, you write to suit them – using appropriate language.

You may decide to focus on the following audience for example; Young people, married couple, women, men, science students, Older adults, Health maniacs, sports enthusiasts and so on.

Know how to relate or communicate your idea to your audience.


What subject matter will most interest your audience?

– Are they familiar with the topic or are they less familiar with it?

– What writing style will be suitable – humour? formal? Conversational?

Answering the above questions will  help you avoid needless descriptions or writing in a way that will be confusing, or hard for them to understand.

Use the appropriate language


Use words that are suited to or right for your audience.

– Use the right vocabulary. Certain audience won’t understand big words while some will find simple words amateurish. 

– Slangs and compression of words should be avoided at all costs when you’re addressing a formal or dignified audience. Know when to avoid them.

In Conclusion

Identifying the reason for your writing and the people you’re writing for will go a long way in making your writing more focused and easier.

Prewriting|Techniques You Can Use To Find And Focus On A Writing Topic

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Writing ideas are everywhere, right? Sure they are! Whatever you see, hear, sense around you or converse about with someone, can serve as an idea to write about. 

In spite of the thousands of ideas around you, you might still find it hard to pick and focus on a particular writing topic.  For this reason, prewriting becomes the first stage of the writing process to help you find and concentrate on a particular subject.

During prewriting, you generate ideas by venting your imagination to let striking topics shine through.

When you sit before a blank page, be it your computer, notepad or journal, you are being waited upon to put some ideas down. Maybe you have a topic before you but need some ideas or you have no topic at all. Prewriting comes to your rescue like magic.

 

How do you begin the journey towards finding and focusing on a writing topic?

Start With Generating Ideas

 

You can generate ideas by using the following prewriting techniques.

Freewriting

  • Pick any topic
  • Set a time limit to help you stop at a particular time say five minutes. You don’t need to free-write all day for ideas.
  • Write down your ideas as they come to you.
  • Ignore spellings, grammar, punctuation and logic during this time
  • If you run out of ideas, repeat the word severally until your ideas begin to flow again.
  • Once the time is up, review what you have written.
  • Pick the idea that is most interesting. That’s the one you’ll like to work with.

Collecting

You can generate ideas by collecting raw material from other sources. I call it raw materials because those ideas collected in this way are to start you off and help you produce a brand new end product – a topic to write about.

You can collect ideas from books, movies, conversations( between you and others, or among others in your environment), journal you have kept, newspapers and magazines.

  • Pick any idea from the above resources
  • Free-write about it for five to ten minutes.

Explore Your Ideas

 

This helps you to clarify your thinking and find a focus for your writing.

   ✔Making a list

Pick a key idea and list other related ideas under it.

For example;

Places I have visited

 

-Burj Khalifa

– Polo Park

– The Egyptian Pyramid

– My grandmother’s house

– The National Museum

 

Once you have finished making your list, go through them to pick the ones that seem most interesting to you.

    ✔Asking Questions

Another way to explore your ideas is by asking questions; who, what, where, when, why, how.

Sample questions

  • Who or what do I want to write about?
  • What happened to my subject?
  • Where did this happen?
  • When did this happen?
  • Why did it happen?
  • How did it happen

You can ask personal questions. This can move you to react to your topic and helps you analyze your experience.

You can ask creative questions to relate or compare your subject with something different from it or image This can broaden your standpoint on a subject.

You can also use analytical questions helps you to explore the structure and function of your subject – to analyze and make decisions.

Informational questions can help you find out the truths or facts about your subject.

Narrow Your Topic

By now you should have gotten a topic and maybe it’s a broad one. You need to narrow it to make it easier to research on and write about.

Narrowing your topic makes it more specific – with a reduced scope.

Let’s say you want to write on the topic Novels. This is a broad topic and you just have to narrow it down. You may use the following for this purpose.

Time
What time period would you like your topic to focus on? You may decide to focus on Eighteenth-Century Novels

Location.
What location do you want your topic to be in?  You may decide to use Japan as your location. Your topic will narrow down to Eighteenth-century Japanese Novels.

Category
What category do you want it to be? You may decide to write about The Eighteenth-Century Japanese Detective Novels.

Issue
What problem do you want it to focus on? You may narrow it to The Eighteenth-century Japanese Murder Detective Novels. Does your topic sound right and interesting to you? Is it specific enough? If yes, you’re good to go.

That’s all about finding and focusing on your topic.

What technique or method do you use to find and focus on your writing topic?

The Writing Process – Overview


Starting from the time the idea hits you to the time your work sparkles like the stars of heaven,  all polished and ready to be published, a process of refinement or improvement is involved known as the writing process

What is the Writing Process?

The Writing Process is a series of stages involved in turning your idea, thoughts or topics into a refined and polished final product. In other words, it is a series of stages that all writers must move through to create their finished product.

All writers take their ideas, topics through these stages no matter what they are writing about, except of course it’s private journal meant for his eyes alone.

If a writer wants his work to be read by others without screwing up their noses, he must follow the writing process. No one publishes their first draft.

When burning with the urge to make his work more presentable, a writer”s passage through the writing process can be spontaneous in the sense that he passes through it even though he’s yet to hear about it not heard about it. But his walk becomes guided when he does. 

The Writing Process – Stages


                     Prewriting
                            ⬇
                       Drafting
                           ⬇
                      Revising
                           ⬇
                       Editing
                           ⬇
                     Presenting



Looks easy huh? From prewriting to drafting to revising to editing to presenting, right?

Wrong! Not always that easy



Writing Process Is Dynamic And Can Be Sometimes Messy.


Even though it looks and sounds systematic and reliable, it usually isn’t.

New ideas come up along the line to interfere with the process making the writer go back and forth, up and down the stages, in and out – returning to a stage he had already passed through, again and again. This impacts the writing process making it impossible for the writer to predict what is going to happen along the line or how smooth his writing process will likely be.

So the movement of a writer in and out of the different stages is recursive instead of progressive.

And Each Writer Moves Through The Writing Process in a unique way to suit his need.


So, a writer definitely decides how he passes through the writing process.

The diagram below shows how a writer may decide to pass through the writing process.

Once he walks into the process through prewriting, he controls how he moves to finally come out through presenting with the mistake-free product and beads of sweat all over his forehead.