Different approaches to planning and organizing your writing

You may remember that in Chapter 3, we introduced the idea of 'building blocks' as a way of thinking about constructing a piece of writing. We can also compare the 'shaping' process with how a child makes a building with bricks. One child might have some idea of the overall structure she wants but she may have to try out different ways of getting there using different arrangements of bricks. She may start off with no idea at all, yet in the end she gets a building she likes. One child might hesitate a lot as he builds; another may just plunge into it. This illustrates that everybody works differently. You will need to try out different ways of planning and writing to find out what works best for you.

The quotes below illustrate different writers' approaches to planning, organizing and shaping their writing. These writers all have some useful ideas that are worth considering when you are thinking about shaping your own writing.

In practice, you may, of course, vary your approach for different purposes and for different kinds of assignment. As with all aspects of writing, it is a good idea to be aware of different methods and to try them out.

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