It’s 5am and I’m still writing

October 24th, 2007
By Jon H
It’s 5am and I’m still writing

So, I wonder how many people stay up to 5am (or longer) in the morning still writing their essays? Well, I have to confess that I stayed up writing essays until (sometimes) 11am in the morning. Once I got ‘on a roll’ I couldn’t stop and had to finish the whole essay from start until finish.

Most of the time this wasn’t through choice, as I would be rapidly writing through the night, with the help of huge mugs of coffee, trying to get the 3,000 word essay written for submission in the afternoon. I found the ‘all in one go’ method quite promising, as I would have hundreds of thoughts running through my head as I looked through previously read research papers, and my own notes – sometimes paper pads full – to release onto the screen in front of me. I continued this base understanding and technique through into my masters degree, with astonishing results. Some (not all) of my papers submitted, did receive quite high marks – 70 – 85% in a masters degree that is considered quite high, in fact some do consider this to be a promising student to study at doctoral level.

Reviewing the above you may be a little sceptical to understand why I had such promisingly high marks? Well, I can’t teach you any ‘key strategy’ or ‘essential programme’ that you should undertake to achieve these results. Heck, I even failed a couple of my essays and had to re-submit – so as we say in the North of England “everything wasn’t smelling of roses!”, and there isn’t a ‘strategy’ that you can follow, just practice and review – all of your work.
Looking at writing your essay all in one go, how it has benefited me, and what will help you in doing this is below; but, I will remind readers of this blog that preparation is everything, and writing your essay through the night isn’t for everyone and is far from ideal.

Isn’t it tiring?

For me not really, as I can deal with around 4 hours sleep a night, and always have; it’s when I get 9/10 hours that I become disorientated because it isn’t the ‘norm’ for me. Want to know more about ‘tricking’ your body into a system/schedule, then read a previous post on treating college/university as a 9 to 5 job.

The Reasons/Benefits

Below are some reasons why I was normally up in the early hours writing papers:

  • I’m generally a night owl – I’ve always hated getting up in a morning and still do. Working through the night can have its advantages, as there aren’t many people to distract you.
  • I procrastinate a lot – Putting things off I do a lot of, and after-all if you can do it today then you can do it tomorrow!
  • I get bored easily – Researching a subject, then writing about it a few hours everyday would drive me to boredom, no matter if I was interested in the subject or not. If I have limited time then I tend to want to get the job done and not be beaten.
  • I live on stress – A strange notion, huh? Well, working in hospitality all my life has taught me (some say for the worse) that you will be put under-pressure alot, and thus when I get pressured I perform!

Tips if time is running out

If you’re running out of time, and typing this (as I am now – very ironic) just before 5am in the morning (UK time), then you could do the following:

  • Type faster – It’s true, if you type faster you will complete the work quicker :))) lol.
  • Drink Coffee – It will provide you with a ‘buzz’ aka a caffeine fix to get you through the final stage.
  • Babble – It’s so true. Some of my great essays have included ‘babble’ where you talk about nothing really on topic, you just write words to fill the content.
  • Go for a run – It will clear your mind and allow you to come up with some more needed words and ideas.
  • Accept a pass – Accept that you will get a pass for this essay and work harder at the next one.

Never forget…. You should’nt be in the position I was in above, as you should complete the paper ages before it is due in, and be in the bar having a drink with friends, not like me, getting some sleep after an exhausting 24 hours.

Happy Dreams…….

The Discussion

Join in!
  • October 25th, 2007
    4:16 pm

    I love this tip:
    If time is running out, type faster.

    I will use it on my next paper. Thanks lol.

    Good read though.


  • October 25th, 2007
    11:06 pm


    Cheers, it was late and I just wanted the ending to be a little amusing – it was for me anyway.
    As if you can type faster! lol!

  • October 30th, 2007
    9:46 pm

    Nick – babble?

    Surely not?

    Remember blah that blah one blah next blah assignment 😉


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