How To Write an Essay

How To Write an Essay
Essays are common in elementary, middle, high school and college, and you may even need to write essays in the business world (although they may not be called "essays" at that point). An essay is defined as "a short literary composition of an analytical, interpretive, or reflective kind, dealing with its subject in a nontechnical, limited, often unsystematic way and, usually, expressive of the author's outlook and personality."
Writing

For some, writing an average essay is as simple as sitting down at their computer and beginning to type, but a lot more planning goes into knowing how to write an essay successfully. If you have never written an essay before or if you struggle with writing and want to improve your skills, it is a good idea to go through several steps in the essay writing process.

For example, if you want to write an essay, you should generally:

Decide what kind of essay to write
Brainstorm your topic
Do research if necessary
Develop a thesis
Outline your essay
Write you essay
Edit you writing to check spelling and grammar
While this sounds like a lot of steps to write a simple essay, if you follow them you will be able to write more successful, clear and cohesive essays..

Kinds of Essays

The first step to writing an essay is to decide what kind of essay to write. There are several main structures that essays an be grouped into:

Narrative Essays: These sort of essays tell a story or impart information about your subject in a straightforward, orderly manner.
Descriptive Essays: These sort of essays focus on the details of what is going on. For example, if you want to write a descriptive essay about your trip to the park, you would give great detail about what you experienced: how the grass felt beneath your feet, what the park benches looked like, and anything else the reader would need to feel as if he were there.
Persuasive Essay: Persuasive essays are those essays in which you try to convince the reader of some point of view.
Comparative Essay: In a comparative essay, you compare two or more different things.
Expository Essay: In an expository essay, you explain to the reader how to do a given process. You could, for example, write an expository essay with step by step instructions on how to make a peanut butter sandwich.
Knowing what kind of essay you are trying to write can help you decide on a topic and structure your essay in the best way possible.

Brainstorming

Brainstorming is the process in which you come up with the essay topic. You need to simply sit and think of ideas during this phase. Write down everything that comes to mind as you can always narrow those topics down later.

Choose the best topic from among them and begin moving forward on writing your essay.

Research

Once you have done your brainstorming and chosen your topic, you may need to do some research to write a good essay. Go to the library or look on the Internet for information about your topic. Interview people who might be experts in the subject. Keep your research organized so it will be easy for you to refer back to, and easy for you to cite your sources when writing your final essay.

Develop a Thesis

Your thesis is the main point of your essay. It is essentially one sentence that says what the essay is about. For example, your thesis might be "Dogs are descended from wolves." You can then use this as the basic premise to write your entire essay, and all of the different points throughout need to lead back to this one main thesis. The thesis will usually be used in your introductory paragraph.

The thesis should be broad enough that you have enough to say about it, but not so broad that you can't be thorough.

Outline Your Essay

The next step is to outline what you are going to write about. This means you want to essentially draw the skeleton of your paper. Start by writing the thesis at the top and then write a topic sentence for each paragraph below. This means you should know exactly what each of your paragraphs are going to be about before you write them.

Fill in facts from your research under each paragraph which you want to write about when you write the essay. Make sure each paragraph ties back in to your thesis and creates a cohesive, understandable essay.

Write and Edit

Once you have an outline, its time to start writing. Write from the outline itself, fleshing out your basic skeleton to create a whole, cohesive and clear essay. Be organized and make sure you use transitions between your paragraphs so the paper flows smoothly.

Finally, you will want to edit and re-read your essay, checking to make sure it sounds exactly the way you want it to.

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