Until I started to read. I cannot explain the bad. Admittedly, it's the first paper, and most of them are probably freshmen or sophomores or people from non humanities disciplines. Some of them may never have written a paper in their lives. It shows.
I'm trying to be as fair as I can... in part because there are 70 of them and 1 of me, and if I spent the time on working through their I'd like to with each one of them? I'd never do anything else again. Even if I spent the time correcting each one the way I'd like it would take me more than a week.
My solution, I think, will be to talk to my professor about putting up a "tips for writing your paper" sheet for the next one... and we'll see who actually uses it. But I foresee an entire semester where I have to slog through these things. Thank god they're mostly three pages long (and yes, the margins are all messed with, the text is turned up to a 14 ... or 13.5...or not times new roman. It's so funny how patently obvious those little tricks are).
Still... it's kind of fun....