Lesson 7: Revising and Editing Topics Global vs Local Revision Writing Reader-Based Prose Revising the Structure Local Revision
Global vs Local Revision Global Revisions • Revising for Purpose • Revising the Thesis • Revising the Structure Local Revision • Revising for Language • Scrutinizing Paragraphs and Sentences
Revising Globally before Locally • Revision is a process of re-seeing and re-conceiving. • The initial, global revision should • Open things up rather than shut them down. • Ask what the draft is trying to do, how well it does it, and will it make sense to somebody else.
Writing Reader-based Prose Reader-based papers will: • Have a clear purpose. • Establish why the question (and the answer) is significant. • Say one main thing.
Organizing the Paper Around a Purpose Solidify your purpose by • Clarifying your research question again. • Asking yourself if your sources serve your purpose. • Checking to make sure the quoted passages are surrounded with your own voice and analysis.
Establishing Significance Ensure your topic is significant to readers by: • Raising a question they want answered. • Helping them see something familiar in a new way. • Amplifying what they may already know and care about. • Moving them emotionally. • Taking a surprising point of view.
Saying One Main Thing The revision process offers another chance to revisit your thesis. • Does it accurately capture what you want to say? • Is it specific enough? • Is it interesting?
Getting Reader Feedback • To guide readers’ feedback, you might use the following questions: • What is the thesis? • How is the paper organized? • Was the organization logical? • Were any parts not relevant to the thesis? • What examples and types of evidence were most convincing? • What two places could use more development? • Did the introduction catch your attention?
Revising the Structure • Drafting often pushes us away from our working thesis and writing plan. • Use these steps to clarify your thesis and structure as it currently exists. • Take a break. • Reread your draft. • Rewrite your thesis and main points in a new space.
Using Logical Structures Your thesis may drive you to one of the following logical structures: • Thesis to proof • Problem to solution • Question to answer • Comparison to contrast • Cause and effect, or effect and cause • Known to unknown or unknown to known • Simple to complex
Local Revision Local Revisions include • Revising the Voice • Scrutinizing Paragraphs • Scrutinizing Sentences
Revising the Voice Reading your paper aloud to help identify the voice of the paper. Ask yourself: • Is this the voice you want readers to hear? • Does it sound like you? • Is it appropriate for this paper? • Can you identify areas where it sounds flat? • Does the prose distract from what you are trying to say?
Scrutinizing Paragraphs • Each paragraph should present one idea and be organized around it. • Break long paragraphs into shorter paragraphs. • Look for minor or tangential ideas that belong somewhere else. • Watch a video about Paragraph Unity
Paragraph Checklist Follow this checklist to sharpen each of your paragraphs. For each paragraph, • Clarify the overall point or purpose. • Advertise it in a topic sentence. • Cut out what doesn’t belong. • Clarify the structure.
Scrutinizing Sentences Follow this checklist to refine your sentences. For each sentence, • Use active voice wherever possible. • Replace weak verbs with strong verbs. • Vary sentence length and combine sentences. • Simplify sentences by reducing clutter. • Replace stock phrases with fresher alternatives.