How to write a great essay
Writing an essay is not rocket science. It can be very difficult and frustrating but can also be easy and fun if the whole process is planned and properly thought out. An essay is basically a compilation of one’s ideas and acquired ideas on a particular topic. It should not be a repeat or reorganization of someone’s work but an interesting new view on a subject. Writing essays enables one to develop effective analytical and critical skills which come in handy throughout our life experiences.
The whole process of essay writing begins with choosing a topic. The topic will be the first attraction point for the reader. It must be catchy with an effort to arouse a reader’s curiosity. The topic basically summarizes, in a few words, what will be talked about in the essay. So it goes without saying that a good topic will attract attention while a bad one will act on the contrary. But if you have been assigned a topic already by your professor do not worry because you will get another chance in the essay to appeal to the reader.
The topic can act as the title or a guide to the title and it is important to choose a good title for an essay. A great title can be gotten from the source material where nice phrases are incorporated or by analyzing the theme of the essay and determining a title through that. In addition, the intended audience can also help in outlining a great title. Sometimes it is best to write the essay first then choose the title later. All in all it must be interesting and appealing.
Now that you have a topic you must research on it. There are various sources of information that you can use. The internet is the most obvious and easily accessible source. Start with a light research on the topic to get a general idea of the subject matter. In this case the internet is more than suitable. After you have gotten a general idea, you can now dig in deeper by using the literary online databases, organizational sites and other credible sources that have more information. It cannot hurt to also bury yourself in a few books in the library. By the end of this process you will have built a great knowledge base and understanding of your work.
The knowledgebase built will now help you to analyze the arguments for your work. You can ask questions like “What do the experts say?” “What evidence is there to support this topic?” and so on. Remember that we have not yet started writing the paper. We are simply jotting down small points that will be used later. Through analysis we will be able to outline the following:
- The claims on the subject i.e. the conclusions you have come up with
- The reasons and evidence to support your views
- The strengths, weaknesses and logic of your views
By now you have already completed the hardest part of essay writing and what follows is a walk in the park. The next step is to brainstorm. Think about what you have read and analyzed and add your own insights, ideas and thoughts. This is like a personalization of the work where your brilliance will be seen. When you are done brainstorming you can write your thesis. A thesis is the major point of your essay. It is a short declaration of what you are going to say and why.
All the steps above have now armed you with the right tools to embark on the great writing mission. But first you must outline your work so that you can have a guideline to use. Take a piece of paper and a pen and sketch your essay. This is a very simple rough draft with short notes of the general idea in each paragraph. It will help you to ensure that the ideas expressed in each paragraph flow smoothly.
You are now ready to start writing your essay. A traditional essay basically has five paragraphs but this is not a restriction and one can write as many as so desired. The essay will basically have three parts:
- The essay starts with an introduction. Remember when you could not be catchy with your topic from the Professor? Well, the introduction will now help you to attract the reader. So the first sentence must be powerful and attractive. Assume that your reader knows nothing of the topic and set up the issue building it up to lead to your thesis.
- The essay should have paragraphs each containing its own ideas. Make sure that ideas are expounded sensibly and clearly and you support your assertions with evidence.
- Then finally comes the conclusion. Finish the essay with a remarkable thought that the reader can think or talk about.
You have now successfully written a perfect essay. Finish off by reading and rereading the piece to ensure that the ideas are flowing and the grammar is perfect. Also, format the essay according to the correct guideline given by your institution. Make sure that your essay is original and your sources have been properly documented according to the guideline provided.
When the above steps are followed while writing an essay, the process becomes easy and fun. It is important to take your time when writing in order to produce a quality paper. All in all perfection is obtained through practice therefore the more you write the better you will become.