Writing an essay isn’t always easy. If you are new to the essay writing process, you might find you do not know where to begin. Whether you haven’t faced the essay writing before or you would like to improve the writing process, here is a guide to help you prepare a great essay.
Step 1: Choose Your Topic
Sometimes essay topics are already provided because they are assigned to you. But other times, you have the freedom to choose a topic you like. If you need to choose your topic it means you have to put a little more effort into the essay.
If you get the chance to select your essay topic, you need to consider the following:
- Is the purpose of the essay to persuade or inform?
- What subject matter interests you most?
- If you are writing to inform, choose a topic you have studied and are very familiar with
- If you are writing to persuade, choose a topic you feel quite passionate about
Step 2: Brainstorm and Create an Outline
Organizing your thoughts is the best way to write a successful essay. Putting your ideas down on paper will allow you to visualize the connections and help you begin to structure your paper.
How to Create an Outline:
- Brainstorm all your ideas, thoughts, or places of research
- Write your topic in the middle of a blank page
- Draw 3-5 lines branching out from this topic
- Write your main ideas on these lines and add more lines branching out from your ideas. This is where you will put your sub-topic ideas
Step 3: Write Your Thesis Statement
Your thesis statement is your main purpose for writing the essay. It will tell your readers the main ideas behind the essay itself. The thesis statement is made up of two parts:
- Part One – Stating the topic
- Part Two – Stating the point of the essay
Step 4: Write the Body
Referring back to your diagram, you can write the body, or the main paragraphs, of the essay. It is easy to start writing your introduction since you have the main ideas displayed on your diagram. Each idea will get its own paragraph.
The paragraphs of the body should be structured this way:
- Write the main idea as an introductory sentence
- Follow with supporting ideas
Step 5: Writing the Introduction
The introduction can be the hardest part of the essay to write. You want to interest your reader while sticking to the topic. A few tips to writing an introduction are:
- Using a quote
- Starting with shocking information
- Using anything attention grabbing
- Just be sure to tie the introduction into the thesis statement, which will be included in the final sentence of the introduction.
Step 6: Writing the Conclusion
The conclusion will tie everything together and give your final view on the topic. A strong conclusion should have 3-5 sentences and refer back to the thesis statement.
Step 7: Proofreading and Final Touches
Always proofread a few times before handing in your final copy of the essay. Proofreading will allow you to:
- Check for spelling or grammar errors
- Make sure you have followed the assigned format or word count given
- Re-reading out loud will help you hear if it makes sense
- Make sure your essay flows properly and is not full of disjointed information
Good luck with writing a great essay!