The daily routine of a research paper writer differs from any other type of creative job. Given that such writers spend more time on research, they usually leave less room for imagination. Their work has to fit specific demands from an expert audience. At the same time, it has to be consistent and extensively searched for discrepancies.
Wondering what a typical day in this position looks like? Let’s find out!
Checkbox #1: Dissecting a topic
This may sound harsh, but a research paper writer has to dive into an essay question to deliver exactly what the customer needs. Once familiarized with the project, they start browsing for every possible source and digging for accurate information. They note important things along the way, drafting an outline for the topic.
Professional writers also call this step “fact-finding” and admit it takes the bulk of the day, depending on how difficult the subject is. After all, the research stage is critical for the paper’s quality. Format and word count don’t matter if writing reflects unproven or outdated information.
Checkbox #2: Collecting references from academic advisors
Writers, who engage in research papers, are usually specialized in some narrow topic. They might be active participants in science projects or work in a related discipline. This field of creative pursuits is limited by knowledge and motivation to explain the topic to readers. Therefore, a research paper writer is usually a person with first-hand experience in the given area.
To ask for a reference is not obligatory, but it gives the writer and the audience credit. Seeing the previous accomplishments and competencies, people feel confident about the quality of the work.
Checkbox #3: Reflecting on time-management techniques
Due to the freelance nature of work the research paper writer does, they are more flexible in planning a day. However, an adaptable schedule doesn’t mean there are no deadlines. Writers have to set up their tasks properly, so they won’t miss an important project.
Sometimes when writer’s block comes along, writers refer to psychological hacks to boost motivation so that they can speed up the process. A research paper may be less engaging in terms of the text flow because it requires a full comprehension of the topic.
Here’s a list of tips writers use to effectively manage their schedule:
- Setting a timer – to take a break once in a while,
- Turning off distractions – writing and multitasking don’t match,
- Crafting “To Do” lists – to stay organized,
- Choosing a goal for every session – to rate the final result.
Although research papers need topic understanding first, they can’t go without solid writing skills. Therefore, as with any creative specialty, producing an informational piece needs time and deep focus.
Checkbox #4: Active reading and making notes
The research paper reflects information the writer learned about the topic. On the other side, this information has to be carefully filtered and presented to the reader. A task for the writer is to go through every possible source so that the reader will skip this step.
To document the insights from books, articles, and interviews, writers make notes while reading. They don’t trust a single authority to reflect on the topic. Besides, readers can relate to certain posts or articles by themselves; the writer’s job is to provide a unique observation based on the available sources.
Checkbox #5: Leaving space for revision
Every writer knows that time for making amends will come. The reasons for revision requests are different: failing customer’s expectations, using information without a fact-check, or simply mechanical errors. Facing a revision doesn’t mean the writer is bad or less experienced. There’s only room to improve the quality, achieve a higher score, and perhaps, get a good recommendation in the future.
Revision is slightly different from a regular writing process. Firstly, you deal with a written text, not a blank page. Secondly, in most cases, it won’t ask for additional research – just a few facts to check. The pitfall is that revision may come unexpectedly and won’t fit into a tight writer’s schedule. In this case, being prepared is a key tool for success.
If the editor needs a grammar check, writers can switch between Outwrite vs. Grammarly; if the customer feels unhappy with the context, writers browse for more resources to back up the story. One of the rules they follow is that every single text is not perfect, and there’s always improvement potential. Therefore, writers perceive revision not as a humiliation but as a chance to become more efficient.
Checkbox #6: Sharing information with peers
In doing a research paper, writers assess the target audience. It’s a rare thing for them to write for an academic circle only; more likely, people with minimum or zero expertise will also deal with the paper.
Sharing information with friends is a winning decision to see the text from another perspective. If a writer wants an honest opinion on readability and logical flow, they spare some time to send it out. Thus, they can improve the paper before it gets to the editor.
Checkbox #7: Balancing work and personal life
A writer is still a person who needs rest and socialization. Working from home makes it difficult to separate professional life from a household. Whether managing a few tasks at once or coordinating a single project, writers find time for self-education and, of course, vacations. By learning new things, they gain new knowledge and challenge themselves to pursue a higher career stage.
The writer goes through two main stages while working on a research paper: analyzing the topic and drafting a piece. To organize a daily routine and manage tasks effectively, writers need great time-management and learning skills.
Most professionals have previous experience in a related discipline or a specialized educational background; however, they still need extensive research to fill the gaps. During the day, the writer prioritizes important tasks and urgent projects, getting the work done before the deadline. Producing quality content, which suits the target audience, is the end goal of the research paper.