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How To Write An Essay

The Steps for Writing a Strong and Effective Essay
by

Maggie Hyslop

on 13 March 2013

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Transcript of How To Write An Essay

From Ideas to Editing Where Do I Begin? Pre-Writing Paragraph Building This is the main idea of your essay.
The Thesis Statement is a rewording
of the question, with your "answer" included
(you might remember being taught to
"state the question" in your answer -
this is a similar thing)
Your Thesis Statement must be a clear and confident sentence that appears at the
beginning of your Introduction Paragraph,
telling the reader exactly what
your essay is about. Often,the hardest part of writing an essay is getting started.
There can be a lot of pressure and worry when you first sit down to write:
What am I going to say?
And how am I going to say it?
This stress can be avoided if you follow these simple steps:
Pre-Writing
Organizing
Paragraph Building
Editing
Trust me, the steps are simple...
but if you skip one,
you're going to find yourself
in deep water! This is the step where you
explore your question
and brainstorm your ideas.
Think about what you are being asked, and come up with as many ideas and examples as you can until you find the ones that best answer the question.
There is no such thing as a bad idea at this point - write down whatever comes into your mind - you'll go back through and pick out
the strongest ones when you're done.

This is also where you develop your
Thesis Statement We are writing a "5 Paragraph Essay,"
which includes an Introduction,
three Body Paragraphs,
and a Conclusion.
The Body Paragraphs are your main ideas
which you came up with during
the Pre-Writing step.
Now you need to decide what order you will present them in. It is always a good idea to
start with your weakest argument and
end with your strongest,
that way the reader is left with
the best impression. Each paragraph must start with a
Topic Sentence,
a clear and confident sentence that tells the reader what the paragraph is about.
Make sure this is the first sentence -
don't have your reader try to guess what you are talking about.
Then, use the Point-Proof-Explanation model
to write the paragraph:
Point - this is your argument or idea (your Topic Sentence)
Proof - quotes from the play to support your argument
Explanation - explain the quotes, and show how they support what you are saying Thesis Statement How to Write an Essay Organize Your Ideas Introduction and Conclusion Although the introduction paragraph is the first paragraph of your essay, it does not necessarily have to be the paragraph that you WRITE first -
some people find it easier to write the introduction after they are finished, when they have a better idea of the order and flow of their essay. Others find that writing the introduction first helps to get them organized and keep them on track.
Whenever you choose to write your introduction is up to you, but the structure of the paragraph will be the same either way:
Begin with your Thesis Statement so that your reader knows exactly where the essay is going
Provide a brief description of the Body Paragraphs - tell your reader how you will prove and explain your thesis

Your conclusion paragraph must begin with a restating of your thesis, followed by a brief summary of all the evidence you presented to support your argument.
Keep it short, sweet, and to the point -
the reader has just finished the essay, so you only want to sum up what they have read, not tell them everything all over again. Edit, Edit, Edit
You did all that planning, pre-writing, and organizing, but if you skip this step then you've only done half the work...and you'll only get half the marks you really deserve.
When you edit an essay, there are a few things you want to look for:

Did I answer the question? And does my answer match my thesis?
Does the structure of my essay follow the outline I gave in my introduction?
Does my conclusion match my thesis? And does my summary match the structure of the essay?
Does every paragraph start with a clear and confident Topic Sentence (and does my Introduction begin with my Thesis Statement)?
Does each paragraph follow the Point-Proof-Explanation model? And did I effectively prove and explain my points?
Have I spelled everything properly? ESPECIALLY the characters' names from the play?
Did I use proper grammar and sentence structure?

It never hurts to get someone else to proofread your essay - there will always be things that you miss when you are reading your own work Keep This In Mind Writing is a process -
it does not come quickly or easily for anyone.
You will get stuck.
You will write, rewrite, edit, and delete things over and over again until you feel like they are right,
and that's okay!

Don't get frustrated, and don't give up -
sometimes the best thing you can do is walk away for a little while -
take a break, clear your head, and get back at it.

You can fix everything when you get to the editing stage, so don't worry about writing the "wrong" thing - just keep going.

Remember, the only things that I can mark are the things you have written, so make sure you say everything you need to say in order to get your point across.
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