SUBMITTED BY JAMES ESPOSITO
How to Pull an All-Nighter in 13 Easy Steps
Do you have a paper coming up? Look at the assignment sheet; if the date is any further away than a week, don’t worry about it! This week is for the things you have to get done this week.
- Look at the Assignment Sheet
Oh-no, it’s Sunday night already! The paper’s due tomorrow!
Okay, so what’s a topic you can pick? Like … the Maya? Yeah, this is gonna be awesome. Check the indexes in all your books, type “the maya” in Google Scholar, go through the databases and see what comes up.
All right, before you start writing, you need an outline to follow, but that shouldn’t be too hard. You’ve just got to—hmm.
- Get Coffee
It’s gonna be a long night.
You don’t need an outline; just start writing. Maybe you could do a freewrite, where you take 20-30 minutes to write about the topic without stopping at all. It forces your brain to go into your unconscious when you start feeling like you’re running out of things to talk about.
Now that you’ve got some words down, try to find a focal point. Coming up with a tentative thesis statement is a good place to start, and it’s generally a lot easier to come up with an outline when you have a direction to go in.
- Look at the Clock
Oh no, it’s midnight already! How did it get this late!
- Pump Out Some Words
Start writing. It doesn’t have to be at the introduction; the best place to start is whatever you’re most passionate about—or whichever part you get the most. Either way.
- Go For a Walk
Have you caught yourself rereading the same paragraph over and over for several solid minutes? Get some fresh air and clear your head. Wake your body up with a walk to the conveniently close bay front.
- Get Back to Work
It’s late, and you’re tired, and your back hurts, your eyes hurt, and finishing this paper is the only thing that sounds better than sleep’s sweet embrace. But if you get it done, you don’t have to settle for second best.
You’re almost there! Reread what you’ve written out loud (or if a friend can, all the better). Hearing your words out loud can help you find any quick-fix errors you might have missed before.
- Turn That Sh*t In!
You did it. Now go to sleep.
BUT … to avoid situations like this in the future, please visit the Writing Resource Center. We’re happy to help you at any point in your process. Trust us, we’ve been there.