Tips for Writing Professionally

Writing for a professional, adult audience can be an intimidating process. Luckily, you are not alone, and there are many tools that can help you!

Here are some tips to get you started:

- Remember to try approaching the project from a professional standpoint. Are the statements you’re making appropriate to say to a teacher or superior? If not, then consider revision. - Avoid the use of slang and casual language. - Examples can be ‘Wazzup?’, ‘How you doin’?’, any other shortening of words ending in ‘-ing’, and ‘yous/y’all’. - Proofread your work - This means to check for spelling and grammatical errors. - If you’re struggling with this, programs like Grammarly might be useful! - Avoid second-person perspective/tense. This can simply be achieved by eliminating the words ‘you’, ‘your’ and/or ‘yours’ from any and all sentences. By using the second person, you’re becoming too familiar with the audience, and not using a professional tense. - If you’re writing a research paper, or something else more academically centered, it might be a good idea to use third-person. If you’re writing a narrative, reflection, or anecdote, it might be a good idea to use first-person. Simply put, first-person uses ‘I’, ‘me’, and ‘my’, while third-person uses ‘They’ or ‘Them’. - Try using different words or phrases than normal. Instead of describing a poem as ‘sad’, try the simile ‘melancholy’. Instead of ‘big’, try ‘enormous’. Or ‘captivating’ instead of ‘attention-grabbing’. - Avoid contractions if possible. While this isn’t a requirement for professional writing, avoiding contractions can help make your paper seem more professional. For example, try ‘do not’ instead of ‘don’t’. - Be concise. Professional papers like to get to the point very quickly. For example, instead of “One-eyed, one-horned, flying, purple, people-eater”, try ‘purple monster’.

Creative vs. Academic works, writing and publishing both in the MiMJ When planning to write your paper for the Made in Millersville Journal, we ask that you keep the following requirements in mind:

- Keep your writing to 2-3 pages, double spaced. (This excludes references!) - Use Times New Roman, 12-point font with 1-inch margins. - Use a Microsoft Word Document or other .doc or Docx file. (The Journal does NOT accept submissions using PDF, .rtf, .pages, etc.) - APA style, in-text citations and references.

When writing an academic paper, we recommend including the following sections:

- Title - Abstract - Introduction - Body - Conclusion - References - Other optional sections include: - Lab Findings - Data - Methods Used - Results

When writing a creative paper, some of these sections may be difficult to include. Here are some suggestions to make your paper fit your needs!

Use a Project Summary or Contextual Narrative instead of an abstract, explaining what your project is about and why it’s important or engaging for your audience. Try a Works Cited Page, or a Works Referenced Page instead of a formal bibliography Include a Creative Process section describing how you came to complete this project. Use multimedia platforms! The Made in Millersville Journal accepts Images/Pictures, Videos, and Audio additions!

Hopefully, you can find a solution among any or all of these options. If you have any questions, feel free to contact your Editorial Team at madeinmujournal@millersville.edu.