Aidan is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences, majoring in global health and the environment with a possible minor in psychology. Aidan is originally from San Francisco, California. On campus, she serves as vice-president, standards for Kappa Delta sorority and has been selected as a resident assistant for upperclassmen next year. Aidan also serves as co-chair for the First Year Students of Hillel and is a member of the WUSTL Women’s Water Polo Team.
What brought you to The Writing Center?
In high school, my classmates turned to me for help in editing their papers. I quickly recognized that rather than focusing on proofreading, I questioned and discussed the concepts, and they often reported this type of feedback was more helpful. When I learned that Wash U had a writing center where students could come to discuss and gather their thoughts and ideas regarding unpolished, vulnerable pieces of writing, I was immediately intrigued. I used The Writing Center a few times my first year and found it was incredibly beneficial to bounce my ideas off a neutral third party and to have someone ask me critical questions without the fear of judgment or pressure of being graded, which resulted in improving the quality of my work.
What do you like most about working with writers at The Writing Center?
One of my favorite aspects in working at The Writing Center is that I get to interact with students from all corners of campus, most of whom I would never otherwise meet. Additionally, I’ve loved getting to know the senior tutors at The Writing Center. Through The Writing Center, I am also able to gain exposure to different styles and topics of writing, allowing for a great environment for personal learning and growth.
What do you find most challenging about writing?
Starting the paper is the hardest part of my writing process. Even if I have a detailed outline, I often get stuck on the wording and details of each sentence which causes me to have writer’s block. I find that when I skip sections like the Introduction and move to the more evidence-based paragraphs I am able to progress with my writing and then come back to the parts on which I was stuck.
What advice do you have for writers?
Trust yourself! I think the most debilitating part of the writing process is that people lose confidence in their voice. Trust your ability to speak through written words and know that you can always come back to edit, as nothing is permanent. From a more technical perspective, I have found that detailed outlines or reversed outlines are most helpful as they allow you to see where you need to go and where you may need to hone your argument. Lastly, try not to get attached to every word because if you take a step back you may be surprised to see that if you allow yourself to change the order, sentence structure or wording, new ideas and concepts may reveal themselves.