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Don't Copy Paste My Work! Ever since I was a child, I've liked to write. Back in school once a week we were to write a story or an essay. The stories were always 'your choice, but for the essays we were given topics or themes.

Back then home computers were not common at all; so there was no using the internet for homework (a thought that is somewhat shocking now). So what was written pretty much came directly from your own mind, your own ideas, and your own words. And it was never a chore. I always enjoyed it and felt pleased with myself after completing a story or essay.

Then came my 'private study' period and I pretty much stopped writing altogether, especially the stories; I haven't written any fiction since (unless you count a TAT test I took once). But there were many more assignments and report writing to do later in my academic career. Although it was a bit of a chore, as compared to the school days. But still part of me enjoyed the process: reading books, browsing the internet looking for relevant literature and finding a lot of irrelevant but interesting literature. Though the process was tiring at times I did enjoy, rather I loved the feeling once it was done. There's nothing like the feeling of a completed assignment.

However in my later academic career, my words were not exclusively my own. An academic article or assignment on any topic involves compiling, re-phrasing and organizing other people's work (while giving credit where its due of course aka references).

The fact that now my assignments didn't usually contain much original thought was never an excuse for it, to not be an original piece of work. And I did put a lot of effort in my assignments. And I've been fortunate enough to get good feedback on them; which is probably why I didn't detest them like some of my classmates.

The satisfying feeling you get after an assignment or project is completed can be good enough to feed your soul. But not everyone shares these feelings and for most assignments are just another irritant of the academic set up. When I first started going to university I remember a cousin who said to me "I know some people in your university they can do or help you with your assignments". I said OK, but I knew I was never going to ask them for help, I'd rather do it myself.

A few months back I came across a job ad for writers. Being someone who enjoys trying to compile facts and ideas into a comprehensive whole I applied. Eventually I got a call back. But the job wasn't what I had expected. The company needed 'academic writers'. They were going to give me article/assignments to write on. What the company basically did was take a fee from customers and had hired writers to write their assignments, dissertations etc for them.

I ended up spending half a day writing an article for them as a 'sample'. After completing it I was hesitant about sending it in. No, there were no original thoughts in it; yes it was mostly re-phrasing another author's research findings and so on. But it was still an original piece of work. MY original piece of work. The thought that somebody else was going to put their name on it and claim it to be theirs just didn't feel right.

A few days later I received my 'first' assignment from the company. But after looking through it I decided that I just didn't want to spend hours on something that at the end of the day wasn't going to be mine. So I had to say "thanks, but no thanks" to the company.

Before any of this happened I didn't realize just how possessive I was of my writing and how much I 'owned' it. And although it was suppose to be a paid job; I felt like I'd rather see my name as the author of anything I write, good or bad, than get paid and let someone else take the credit. This work is mine and although getting paid is absolutely awesome I'd rather be the one being credited for my words than anyone else.

So don't try to copy+paste any part of this and claim it as your own! plagiarism