PS Tip 57 : starting point – heading + answer

This is a simple way to avoid deviating too far from your original plan – simply decide in which order you’re going to attack your statement, and then write out a heading for each paragraph in that order. Under each heading, list the points you want to cover in that paragraph.

Now as you’re writing, you’ve got a constant reminder of what you want to write – thus avoiding too much in the way of waffling – and once you’ve covered each of the points properly you know it’s time to move on to the next paragraph.

If new ideas occur to you as you’re writing, that’s great – I find it often works out that way. A word of warning, though, they’re rarely as good as they initially seem. What I tend to do is make a note of those points as they arise, and once the statement is written I check through to see if I actually want to include them. Usually there is at least once thing that I decide to include, but most of these spontaneous thoughts turn out not to be appropriate.

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