The first sentence — the topic sentence - of your body paragraphs needs to have a lot individual pieces to be truly effective. Not only should it open with a transition that signals the change from one idea to the next but also it should ideally also have a common thread which ties all of the body paragraphs together. For example, if you used "first" in the first body paragraph then you should used "secondly" in the second or "on the one hand" and "on the other hand" accordingly.
Examples should be relevant to the thesis and so should the explanatory details you provide for them. It can be hard to summarize the full richness of a given example in just a few lines so make them count. If you are trying to explain why George Washington is a great example of a strong leader, for instance, his childhood adventure with the cherry tree though interesting in another essay should probably be skipped over. You may have noticed that, though the above paragraph aligns pretty closely with the provided outline, there is one large exception: These words are example of a transitional phrase — others include "furthermore," "moreover," but also "by contrast" and "on the other hand" — and are the hallmark of good writing.
Transitional phrases are useful for showing the reader where one section ends and another begins. It may be helpful to see them as the written equivalent of the kinds of spoken cues used in formal speeches that signal the end of one set of ideas and the beginning of another. In essence, they lead the reader from one section of the paragraph of another. Hopefully this example not only provides another example of an effective body paragraph but also illustrates how transitional phrases can be used to distinguish between them.
Although the conclusion paragraph comes at the end of your essay it should not be seen as an afterthought. As the final paragraph is represents your last chance to make your case and, as such, should follow an extremely rigid format.
One way to think of the conclusion is, paradoxically, as a second introduction because it does in fact contain many of the same features.
While it does not need to be too long — four well-crafted sentence should be enough — it can make or break and essay. Effective conclusions open with a concluding transition "in conclusion," "in the end," etc. After that you should immediately provide a restatement of your thesis statement. This should be the fourth or fifth time you have repeated your thesis so while you should use a variety of word choice in the body paragraphs it is a acceptable idea to use some but not all of the original language you used in the introduction.
This echoing effect not only reinforces your argument but also ties it nicely to the second key element of the conclusion: Having done all of that, the final element — and final sentence in your essay — should be a "global statement" or "call to action" that gives the reader signals that the discussion has come to an end. The conclusion paragraph can be a difficult paragraph to write effectively but, as it is your last chance to convince or otherwise impress the reader, it is worth investing some time in.
Take this opportunity to restate your thesis with confidence; if you present your argument as "obvious" then the reader might just do the same. Although you can reuse the same key words in the conclusion as you did in the introduction, try not to copy whole phrases word for word.
Instead, try to use this last paragraph to really show your skills as a writer by being as artful in your rephrasing as possible. Although it may seem like a waste of time — especially during exams where time is tight — it is almost always better to brainstorm a bit before beginning your essay. This should enable you to find the best supporting ideas — rather than simply the first ones that come to mind — and position them in your essay accordingly.
Sure, you can use the arguments of others to back up what you want to say. However, you need to come up with your original spin on the topic to make it uniquely yours. Make lists of ideas.
You can also try mind mapping. Walk in your neighborhood or local park and think about your topic. Be prepared for ideas to come to you when you least expect them. Write your thesis statement. Look at the ideas that you generated. Choose one to three of your strongest ideas that support your topic.
You should be able to support these ideas with evidence from your research. Write a thesis statement that summarizes the ideas that you plan to present. Essentially, let the reader know where you're going, why, and how you will get there. A thesis statement should have a narrow focus include both your topic and what you plan to present. For example, "Although Eli Whitney's cotton gin ushered in a new era of American prosperity, it also widened the gap in suffering for African-American slaves, who would soon be more in demand, and more exploited, than ever.
Take the thoughts that you brainstormed and assemble them into an outline. Write a topic sentence for your main ideas. Then, underneath, make bullet points and list your supporting evidence.
Generally, you want three arguments or pieces of evidence to support each main idea. In , after the cotton gin had been adopted, slaves totaled about 1. Write the body of your essay. You do want to think about length here; don't write pages and pages if your teacher wants 5 paragraphs. However, you should freewrite to let your thoughts reveal themselves. You can always make them more concise later. Don't use "I" statements such as "I think.
Simply stating your argument with supporting facts makes you sound much more authoritative. Instead of writing, "I found Frum to have a conservative bias," tell the reader why your statement is true: It's tempting to allow your thoughts to wander or to add additional information that seems interesting. However, this distracts from your purpose and undermines your essay.
Make sure you stay on topic! Come up with a compelling title and introduction. Your title and introduction make people want to read your essay. If your teacher is the audience, then of course your teacher will read the whole piece.
However, if you're submitting to an essay contest or writing an essay for college admissions, your title and introduction have to hook the reader if you want to meet your objectives. Skip obvious expressions such as, "This essay is about, "The topic of this essay is" or "I will now show that". Try the inverted pyramid formula. Start off with a very broad description of your topic and gradually narrow it down to your specific thesis statement. Try to use no more than 3 to 5 sentences for short essays, and no more than 1 page for longer essays.
Alternatively, you might open with an anecdote or quote that sets up the importance of your topic. Every year, thousands of unwanted and abused animals end up in municipal shelters. Being caged in shelters not only causes animals to suffer but also drains local government budgets.
Towns and cities could prevent both animal abuse and government waste by requiring prospective pet owners to go through mandatory education before allowing them to obtain a pet. Although residents may initially resist the requirement, they will soon see that the benefits of mandatory pet owner education far outweigh the costs. Summarize your points and suggest ways in which your conclusion can be thought of in a larger sense.
Answer questions like, "What are the implications of your thesis statement being true? In a sense, you are repackaging your thesis statement in your concluding paragraph by helping the reader to remember the journey through your essay.
Nail the last sentence. If your title and first paragraph make the reader want to read your essay, then your last sentence makes the reader remember you.
If a gymnast does a great balance beam routine but falls on the landing, then people forget the routine. Gymnasts need to "stick the landing," and so do essay writers. Wait a day or so and re-read your essay. Get your essay done a couple of days before the due date so that you have time to go back and revise it to make it polished. Avoid turning in a first draft that you haven't double-checked for errors. Correct errors related to grammar, punctuation and spelling.
Consult a style book if you are unsure how to properly use quotation marks, colons, semicolons, apostrophes or commas. Avoid using exclamation points. Make sure you know how to use apostrophes correctly. Look for mistakes involving general punctuation. Check for run-on sentences , commas and periods inside quotation marks, as well as sparely-used dashes, colons, and semi-colons.
Remove any repetitive or unnecessary words. Vary your language with the help of a thesaurus. Also, consult a dictionary to make sure that you're using unfamiliar words correctly. At the same time, try to keep your language short, sweet, and to the point. A thesaurus is a great tool, but don't just use big words to sound fancy. The best essays are clear, concise, and easily understood by a wide audience. Focus on writing killer verbs for sentences. Verbs communicate the action in a sentence and drive the action.
A great verb can be the difference between a bland sentence and a beautiful one. Adjectives are great descriptive words, but when used indiscriminately, they can burden an essay and make it less readable. Try to let the verbs and nouns do most of the heavy lifting before you focus on adjectives.
Avoid colloquial informal writing. Do not use contractions or abbreviations e. Your essay should have a serious tone, even if it's written in a light or lyrical style. Analyze how your essay flows. Does each sentence lead smoothly to the next? Does each paragraph flow logically to the next? Although you can analyze your essay by reading through it, it's helpful to make a reverse outline, working from your essay to outline your thoughts. When events happen in sequence: I first started to realize that I was in the minority when I was in middle school My realization was confirmed when I proceeded to high school.
If sentences elaborate on each other: Plants need water to survive A plant's ability to absorb water depends on the nutrition of the soil. When an idea contrasts with another idea: Vegetarians argue that land is unnecessarily wasted by feeding animals to be eaten as food Opponents argue that land being used for grazing would not be able to be used to create any other kind of food.
If you're relaying a cause and effect relationship: I will be the first person in my family to graduate from college I am inspired to continue my family's progress through the generations. When connecting similar ideas: Organic food is thought to be better for the environment. Cut information that's not specifically related to your topic. You don't want your essay to ramble off-topic. Any information that doesn't directly or indirectly support your thesis should be cut out.
Have someone read your paper aloud to you. Your ears are sometimes better than your eyes at picking up mistakes in language. The essay should sound like it has a good flow and understandable words. As an alternative, you can record yourself reading it aloud and play it back.
Rewrite any problematic body passages. If needed, rearrange sentences and paragraphs into a different order. Make sure that both your conclusion and introduction match the changes that you make to the body. Compose your essay with a clear purpose. A persuasive essay is designed to sway the reader to adopt your point of view about a topic. This means it's important that your views are expressed in a clear, concise manner, which allows the reader to understand your argument. These are good examples of persuasive essay topics you might write about: Whether governments should or should not fund embryonic stem cell research.
Whether love is a virtue or a vice. Why Citizen Kane is the best movie of the 20th century. Why American citizens should be forced to vote. Write your essay as though you are conducting a debate. When you speak in a debate, you introduce your topic, list your evidence and draw a conclusion for the people who are listening. A persuasive essay has a similar structure. Collect facts from good sources to justify your opinions.
Support your argument with reasoned facts. A well-written essay is great, but a well-argued essay is undeniable. In addition to doing research, you can perform empirical experiments including taking surveys, doing interviews or conducting experiments. Survey results or interviews could be great pieces of information to start your essay with. Tell a story about the facts.
Don't just list the facts; tell a story! How would you like to be one of those wrongfully-convicted inmates? On the other hand, for your vacation essay, you might keep your tone lighthearted and playful.
Although it's perfectly fine to write, "By experiencing both city life in the capital of San Jose and rural life in the jungles of Tortuguero, I changed as a person during my trip," you might want to revise the sentence to make it flow with the previous statements.
Include a thesis statement or controlling idea. In essay-writing, a thesis statement is a single sentence that describes the "point" of the essay as clearly and concisely as possible. Some essays, especially five-paragraph essays written for academic assignments or as part of a standardized test, more or less require you to include a thesis statement as part of the opening paragraph.
Even essays that don't require this can benefit from the concise purpose-defining power of a bold thesis statement or controlling idea. Generally, thesis statements are included at or near the end of the first paragraph, but the position can vary in some circumstances.
For your obesity essay, since you're dealing with a serious topic and writing about it in a clinical, straightforward way, you might be fairly direct with your thesis statement: You probably wouldn't include a single thesis statement for your vacation essay. Since you're more interested in setting a mood, telling a story, and illustrating personal themes, a direct, clinical statement like "This essay will describe my summer vacation to Costa Rica in great detail" would sound oddly forced and unnecessary.
Set an appropriate tone for your essay. In addition to being your space to discuss what you're going to talk about, your first paragraph or so is also a space to establish how you're going to talk about it. The way you write — your writing voice — is part of what encourages or discourages your readers from reading your article.
If the tone in the beginning of your essay is clear, pleasing, and appropriate for the subject matter, your readers will be more likely to read than if it's muddled, varies greatly from sentence to sentence, or is mismatched to the topic at hand. Take a look at the sentences for the example essays above.
Notice that, while the obesity essay and the vacation essay have very distinct voices, both are clearly written and are appropriate for the subject matter. The obesity essay is a serious, analytical piece of writing dealing with a public health problem, so it's reasonable for the sentences to be somewhat clinical and to-the-point.
On the other hand, the vacation essay is about a fun, exciting experience that had a major effect on the writer, so it's reasonable that the sentences are a little more playful, containing exciting details and conveying the writer's sense of wonder. Cut to the chase! One of the most important rules when it comes to introductions is that shorter is almost always better.
If you can convey all the information that you need to convey in five sentences rather than six, do it. If you can use a simple, everyday word in place of a more obscure word e. If you can get your message across in ten words rather than twelve, do it. Wherever you can make your introductory passages shorter without sacrificing quality or clarity, do so. Remember, the beginning of your essay serves to get your reader into the meat of the essay, but it's the sizzle and not the meat of the essay itself, so keep it short.
As noted above, while you should strive for brevity, you shouldn't shorten your introduction so much that it becomes unclear or illogical. For instance, in your obesity essay, you shouldn't shorten this sentence: Sum up your argument in a persuasive essay. Though all essays are unique besides plagiarized ones , certain strategies can help you make the most of your essay based on the specific type of writing you're doing. For instance, if you're writing an argumentative essay — that is, one that argues a specific point with the hope of persuading the reader into agreement — it can be helpful to focus on summarizing your argument in the introductory paragraph or paragraphs of the essay.
Doing this gives the reader a quick rundown of the logic you're going to use to support your argument. For instance, if you're arguing against a proposed local sales tax, you might include something like the following in your first paragraph: By proving that the sales tax puts a disproportionate tax burden on the poor and that it has a net negative effect on the local economy, this essay intends to prove these points beyond a shadow of a doubt.
Be attention-grabbing in creative writing. Creative writing and fiction can be more emotionally charged than other pieces of writing. For these types of essays, you can usually get away with beginning your essay with a metaphorical bang.
Making an effort to be exciting or memorable in your first few sentences is a great way to draw readers into your work. Although you can play around more with creative writing, you should still lay out your structure, purpose, and controlling ideas in the beginning. Otherwise, your reader will struggle to follow your writing. For example, if you're writing a thrilling short story about a girl on the run from the law, we might start with some exciting imagery: Red and blue flashed like paparazzi's cameras on the shower curtain.
Sweat mingled with rusty water on the barrel of her gun. It's also worth noting that your first few sentences can be compelling without being action-packed. Consider the first few lines of J. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: What is a hobbit? Why does it live in a hole?
The reader has to keep reading to find out! Tie specific details to your overall theme for arts and entertainment. Writing in the arena of arts and entertainment like movie reviews, book reports, etc. In these cases, while you can get away with a little playfulness in the beginning of your essay, you'll usually need to take care to ensure that you describe your the overall theme or focus even as you pinpoint small, specific details. For example, if you're writing a review and analysis of P.
Anderson's film The Master, you might start like this: Speaking to his teenage paramour for the very last time, Joaquin Phoenix's naval washout suddenly tears through the window screen that's separating them and embraces the girl in a passionate kiss. It's at once beautiful and perverse, and perfectly emblematic of the twisted depiction of love the film presents. Stay clinical in technical or scientific essays.
Of course, not all writing can be wild and exciting. Wit and whimsy have no place in the world of serious analytical, technical, and scientific writing. These types of writing exist for practical purposes — to inform relevant individuals about serious, specific topics.
or "Whom can I pay to do my essay within the deadline I need?" What Are the Biggest Troubles in Doing Essays? One of the most irking things about an essay seems to be its length that is in contrast to my short and abrupt nature.
Sep 03, · How to Begin an Essay Four Parts: Essay Template and Sample Essays Laying the Roadmap for Your Essay Tailoring Your Introduction to Your Essay Using Introduction Writing Strategies Community Q&A The opening of an essay is very important, as you need to grab the reader's attention%(64).
But readers can see, by the tell-tale compression of the pages, when an essay is about to end. You'll irritate your audience if you belabor the obvious. Resist the urge to apologize. Despite writing essays is one of the major activities in studying now, students consider this task as the most terrible one and do anything to avoid dealing with it.
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