Rethinking, Restructuring, Rewriting

I am in the process of rewriting a paper that I had written last semester for a course. The final paper wasn’t my best work, although it fulfill the course’s requirements. There are a few nuggets worth saving though, and this is where the work really begins. It is one thing to edit a paper, to cut irrelevant or dangling bits out here and there; to fix grammar and reword sentences, but in this case, I need to cut out over half of the paper (for reasons I will not get into here today). The challenge, as I see it, is that the way I originally wrote the paper (perhaps the way we all write papers), the core argument of the paper flows from the introduction onwards. Each section feels necessary to make my point. In the end, I have to completely rethink what it is I am (was) trying to say and restructure it so that it makes sense with 50% of the argument missing. The task is proving alot harder than I originally thought, and am now completely simply starting again, one fresh, blank screens. This whole addition by substraction thing is drving me crazy!One piece of advice that was given to me by a colleague yesterday was to simply cut out the bits of words (sentences, paragraphs) that I like – regardless of the overall structure and work from there. So onward and out, that is my task today before heading off to work tonight.

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