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Monday, October 26, 2015

THE WRITING PROCESS: Prewriting



PREWRITING

Before you can begin to write, you need to arm yourself with information and ideas. This stage of writing is called prewriting.

In the prewriting stage you decide what you want to say (topic), why you want to say it (purpose), and to whom you want to say it (audience).
First, decide on your topic or subject by using the following methods:
Free-write: Write down anything that comes into your mind. Write in a random fashion letting your ideas flow freely. This method is like thinking on paper.
Collect Information: Gather information from several different sources about topics that interest you.  A newspaper headline, magazine article, or a photograph in a book can give you interesting ideas for topics.
Make lists: Make lists of events, experiences, people, ideas, or even words that interest you. Use these lists to generate ideas for topics.
Ask questions: Write down questions that you would like to find the answer to. Answers to questions such as What if…? How…? or Who…? might provide an interesting topic for your writing.
After choosing your topic, it is time to determine your purpose, or reason for writing. Your purpose might be to inform, to persuade, to entertain, to describe, or to analyze. Deciding on a purpose can help you narrow your topic.
Finally, determine what audience you are trying to reach with your writing. Knowing your audience will help you to decide on what writing style and what level of vocabulary to use. For example, writing a lab report for a group of environmental scientists would be very different from writing a report on pollution to present to a group of second-graders.

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