In the Looking for Trouble: Finding Your Way into a Writing Assignment, Savini provides readers with a guideline that is aimed to help to approach academic writing strategically. Indeed, as the author states, writing an academic paper can be extremely difficult, even exhausting. To break down the complexity, Savini proposes starting with noticing problems, then articulating them, posing helpful questions, and identifying “what is at stake” (Savini, C., 2011). There are several claims in the chapter I would like to analyze.
What interested me the most was the concept of “integrative thinking” that the author mentions and describes. Integrative thinking represents the intellect’s ability to hold two opposing ideas in mind and still function and produce the third idea (Savini, C., 2011). This is precisely what academic writing frequently requires students to do. Synthesizing concepts and personal opinions demands studying a tremendous amount of information and critical thinking. Then the question arises: what about tasks with a limited amount of time? It seems impossible to fully assess any random problem if there is a hard deadline.
Savini also claims that fruitful questions are the ones that lead you to gain more information. Even though I agree that the right question can help better develop the topic, I frequently face the problem when it is not clear from primary research which direction will give you more details. Moreover, sometimes the most exciting themes are undeservedly understudied, and perhaps by studying such a topic, your work will be more valuable within a specific discipline.
I definitely agree with Savini that only practice can help you develop analytical writing skills. With each new type of writing and a new topic, there is an increase in proficiency and expertise and the speed and quality of research. However, even for born writers, good ideas always require hard work. Nonetheless, following Savini’s framework of academic writing can undoubtedly be very helpful.
Savini, C. (2011). Looking for Trouble: Finding Your Way into a Writing Assignment. Writing Spaces: Readings on Writing. (Vol. 2, pp 52-70). Parlor Press.