Tuesday, March 06, 2012

taking notes for essays

Many of you writing essays will be as annoyed as I am to find that previous readers of library books have underlined or highlighted text.
To facilitate the taking of notes for essay-writing, I have devised the following strategy: as I read the book, I make notes on a sheet of paper of relevant quotes/sections which I wish to use, in brief form eg in the pictured example:
"xiii/2" means "page xiii paragraph two". The "6" below the line indicates that the words begin on the sixth line from the bottom of the paragraph (a number above the line = the # of lines from the beginning of the paragraph). I add a few keywords here: "moves from serious, silly, grotesque-pathetic" tell me that this passage is to do with the form of the film.
The quotes are from a book by Kezich.
 Using this method means that I can read all day & take notes, then sit down at the keyboard and type them out.
I can sort the notes from different books into groups - eg for my Fellini essay headings include "sound', "cutting", "recurrent images, & "themes".

When I come to put it all together I can then easily cut'n'paste in the masterdraft - keeping an eye on the word-count.

Sometimes I print the notes out & cut the most relevant paragraphs out with scissors and arrange them on sheets of paper....that's because I used to use a typewriter to write my essays way back last century.

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