“The first draft of anything is shit.” — Ernest Hemingway

All writers everywhere struggle at times to get their thoughts down on paper in a way that makes sense.

Don’t put undue pressure on yourself by expecting something that looks good right out of the gate.

You’ll want to embrace the idea that your first draft is just a brain dump.

Get all those ideas out of your brain and onto the page.

Do some research. What are other people saying about your topic? Should include any quotes or other sources? Will it help you make your case? (Hint: probably.)

Once you feel you’ve made a sufficient first effort, put the document away and let it sit. Preferably over night.

When you come back to it in the morning with fresh eyes, things will begin to make much more sense.

Go ahead and do your first draft now. Nobody’s going to see it.