Writing Timed Essays

Jan 31, 2012
Day 1 by Sylvia Austin Youth Voices pool photographer on Flickr.

I’m in an Advanced Placement English class this year, which entails writing more timed “academic essays” than I’d care for. I know in the long run it’s helping me become a better writer, but when the time is ticking down and you only have 40 minutes to write a coherent, well- developed, well-written essay. It’s pretty stressful.

I kind of wonder sometimes if those essays we have to write on the AP test are actually an accurate gauge of my intelligence, or just a gauge of how well I can make crap up on the spot. I’m not a bad writer, when the teacher gives the assignment beforehand and a due date. On the other hand, with a timed essay, the stress of it all essentially makes me forget everything I’ve ever learned about writing essays and the final product comes out sounding like I let a four-year old do it.

All right, maybe I’m exaggerating a little, but you get the point. Timed essays are not my strength in school. Hopefully all the practice we've been getting in class will help me get more used to them.