Marman Aie’s Guide To Success in Academic writing! (!!) PS: !!!

It might seem like academic writing is, as a rule, unnessecarily dry, dull, stagnant and unoriginal, (or at least the stuff you’ll be asked to produce) but this isn’t the case! In fact, it’s a delicate ballet – a balancing act, if you will – a deadly razor blade dance as you run a marathon along the knife edge over the abyss of relying on your own thoughts.

Luckily, I’m here to help you out! Ain’t I nice?

1. Style. Style style! Don’t have one. You may be told that you’re allowed to maybe ‘spice it up a little’ and that no-one likes a boring essay but these are just tricks to root out trouble makers and loose cannons; crack open a can of dusty, yawn inducing drivel and down that sucka! As a supplementary thing, don’t waffle.

2. Waffle. Waffle endlessly. How else are you gonna hit that all important word limit? Speaking of which…

3. Waffle some more! If you can make a good point (well, ‘make’, more on that in a second) in a paragraph or so think how much better the same point could be stretched out over, say, five! It’d be about six and a half times as good! That’s just math. Maths. Whatever.

4. Don’t make original points. Why would you want to do this? I mean, there’s literally dozens of books in the world so obviously every single idea has been thought of already. There’s probably a book on the very subject you’ve been asked to write something about; perhaps even two! Go get ’em, read ’em, and regurgitate those points into your essay (while remembering to stretch them out). Those points must be better than yours, after all, they’re in a book! And obviously no-one’s idea ever stood on its own merit, that’d be silly.

5. Repeat yourself. Repeat yourself. If you just made the point (which is someone else’s, remember? And really long, too) once there’s a chance someone might miss it. So say it lots of times, just in case.

6. Hand in at least four copies, plus a spare, plus an email. It’s very important.

7. Be yourself!

8. Never try and hold more than one of the above rules in your mind at one time. Previous attempts by better minds than you (and remember, all minds are better than yours otherwise you wouldn’t be at an institute of learning) and never went well.

That’s it, folks! It’s just that simple. Bet they seem obvious now, don’t they?

PS: I could just be angry, mind, sigh. ‘Jump through hoops’ indeed…


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