Writing is one of the most valuable skills honed in college, and will pay dividends in any walk of life. Good writing allows you to communicate compassionately and effectively, avoid ambiguity, and convey your ideas to others in a persuasive way. From emails and memos around the office to sympathy letters in times of bereavement, your writing skill can directly help in a time of need.
Beyond enhancing other life skills, though, you may wish to make a career out of writing. This can take many different forms – from academic writing, to literature and poetry, to news reporting or blogging. Many courses at IU East teach skills writers need. The library, too, offers many resources to help you build this skill.
Writing guides are a great place to start, and can range from the general – How to Write by Alastair Fowler, Anthem Guide to Essay Writing by Carole L. Hamilton, or How to Write Persuasively Today by Carolyn Davis – to those that are more specific to a certain discipline, like Style Guide for Business Writing by Michael C. Thomsett or A Style and Usage Guide to Writing About Music by Thomas Donahue. There are also guidebooks for publishing your work, like The Creative Writer’s Survival Guide: Advice from an Unrepentant Novelist by John McNally or Getting Published: A Guide for Lecturers and Researchers by Jerry Wellington, whether you’re pursuing a traditional publisher or are interested in print or digital self-publishing with services like Lulu, Blurb, Shutterfly, CreateSpace, or SmashWords.
When you write (particularly in an academic setting), you often use other sources. Citing them is of paramount importance, whether you’re using a method like MLA style (typically used in the humanities) or APA style (typically used in the sciences). The library has created a guide to citation (and the software options available to assist you). Of particular note is the Online Writing Lab from Purdue University, which is one of the best sources on the internet for MLA or APA style. Even our research databases can be of assistance – many of them include an automatic citation generator that can give you an instant reference with the click of a button, like one of these (be sure to proofread their output for accuracy, though):
As you write, it’s imperative to have good, professional feedback. That’s where the IU East Writing Center comes in. Their consultants can give you expert help with your writing style, grammar, or citations. You can submit a paper to them 24/7 at iue.upswing.io – log in with your IU East username and passphrase. The consultants may need between 12-24 hours to reply, and you can submit up to 10 pages per day for review. You can also contact them directly at (765) 973-8506 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. This is their current consultant schedule:
In your time at IU East, you will become an effective writer. If you need help finding the sources you need, you can ask us at email@example.com!