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Murphy’s Laws of Writing College Papers

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If today you’ve split coffee on an absolutely new shirt, don’t hurry to blame yourself or your ex-friend, who suddenly bumped into you, for clumsiness. There is an absolutely real law that can explain such an undesirable incident.

No, no, don’t bother remembering what you studied in Physics. It’s just the law of, you know, life. If you wear something newly bought, you definitely dirty it with something that’s difficult to clean. A familiar situation, isn’t it?

In order to distinguish such a pattern of our everyday lives from more scientifically grounded ones, the so-called Murphy’s Laws were made up. These are short, mostly humorous but very true and acute adages that accurately describe literally everything that may happen to a human being on a daily basis.

The very first “law” belongs to Edward A. Murphy Jr., an American aerospace engineer. What’s more, Mr. Murphy was involved in the development of safety-critical systems of spacecrafts. But most people know him for claiming that if anything can go wrong, it certainly will go wrong.

Although Murphy himself was serious about this idea and actually meant that we should always take negative factors into consideration in order not to let the worst happen, his remark has turned into a more humorous aphorism than he could have expected. 

Yet, gradually, the collection of sayings of such kind grew bigger and became widely known as Murphy’s Laws, true in any country of our world and for each human being.

Let’s see if these laws have anything about college writing!

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Writer’s Block Seems to Know When the Deadline Is

The approaching deadline knows no mercy. And you should face it with dignity. So, at least you can try searching for some materials for or samples of the assigned paper. Believe me they usually turn out a good source of inspiration. And you do need it. So badly.

It appears really difficult to come up with any good ideas when you are very short of time to write that essay. You can’t help thinking about the few days or even hours left. These thoughts are powerful. They stress you out and block any solutions for completing the assignment. Your imagination offers you the variants of the worst scenario possible instead of helping you write at least anything appropriate.

Okay, sorry for such a dark picture. I just wanted you to remember that thrill for some time.

This “law” can be broken. It’ll take some efforts. But it’ll work. You shouldn’t think about the time left when you need to do a college paper. You should focus on the very process of creating it: search more info on the topic, make a plan, divide the work into parts. Stop blaming yourself for procrastination and encouraging yourself to go write the essay. Brace yourself, sit down and finish it.

Inspiration Comes When You Can’t Write Anything Down

Our brain is a very unpredictable guy. The way it analyzes information is still a mystery for scientists despite their claims that they’ve almost uncovered it. But it’s even more interesting how the brain provides us with the results of such analysis.

Psychologists are right when they advise us to switch to a different activity if we have difficulties with completing some task. Forcing your brain to squeeze out another portion of words in order to finish that paragraph can only irritate it much more. So it might even refuse to do anything for you. That’ s why you should give it some rest from writing and let it do something different.

But why don’t psychologists tell us that our brain generates the ideas we need for our essays when we have nothing at hand to write them down?! I’ve got only one solution: always take a pen and notebook with you. Even if you go to the shower.

A So Perfectly Suitable Title… Has Been Chosen by Someone Else

You’ll probably be less upset if this little thief of ideas is your friend. But if he or she isn’t, then… Well, in any case, it’s not nice. However, you snooze, you lose. That’s just our life.

Still, if you have no time to change the topic, you should review the title of your paper and try to rewrite it. If you know that it’s possible to ask your professor for some help with finding any new words for the idea you’re going to develop in your work, don’t hesitate to do it. Just remember that you should never leave the title 100% similar to that of somebody else’s essay. Unless you all were assigned to use it.

So, if you realize you have to change the title, make a note about it and continue writing. Focus on the purpose and keep in mind what you want to research, prove, refute, or just describe in your work. After you finish, check your paper and pay attention to the conclusions you made or the findings you got. Think what’s specific about them.

All these particularities will help you compose an original title, because the content of your essay is certainly different from that of your group mate’s paper.

Strict Professor with Arms Folded

You’ll Remember About That Mistake After You Submit the Paper

It won’t be a misspelling or any punctuation flaw. If you proofread your paper after finishing it, you can be sure that it doesn’t contain errors of such kind.

However, your tired brain might not have noticed something like “1889” instead of the right “1998”, which is especially essential in a History essay. Or if you compare two poems, you might mix up their titles and attribute the wrong characteristics to both works.

It all is editable. But the problem is that your brain somehow reminds you about these mistakes after you hand in the essay to your professor.

But if you are on good terms with them, you can tell them what the matter is and keep your fingers crossed while they’re listening to your explanations. Probably, your eloquence will work and you’ll be allowed to correct the mistake.   

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