- Writing is a personal experience. My essays are cocktails in which I pour all my creative juices. The prospect of having those personal ideas crushed is not very pleasant.
- I am proud of my writing ability. I am proud to a fault actually. I personally believe I could write my way out of every situation I find myself in. If I get a grade less than perfect, my self-worth struggles.
- I do not really know what the professor is looking for. I have found that each professor is different when grading style. Some like a more personal style, others like cold, hard, technical facts. So I naturally have no clue what to do in that area.
Therefore, I have set up a system. The first paper I write is all me. Everything I have learned from Kindergarten throughout my Bachelor's in English is strewn across the page in a style that is all my own. After the professor tears up my first paper, I learn what they are looking for. My next papers are modified to appease their sense of style (and to get an A). At the end of the course, I incorporate what I agree with into my newly evolved writing style, and the cycle continues.
Even though I have it all figured out, it does not change the fact that I am nervous as hell.