How to Write an Effective Essay


Ezequiel Urcino, Staff Reporter

One of the biggest assignments in an English class is to write an essay. Some essays are argumentative, narrative, rhetorical analysis, or persuasive. Each style is different, but there is an effective way of structuring an essay.
The first assignment your teacher might give you is a timed-write. It is not an assignment that is supposed to hurt you. The purpose of it is to record your growth throughout the process. It is also the cornerstone of what your whole essay is going to be about, so take a timed-write seriously.
The first step is to create an introduction. An introduction must include the title, author, and a hook statement. The purpose of a hook is to grab the attention of the reader. Start by giving an idea about what you are writing about. Then, you must include the most important part of an introduction. The thesis. A thesis is an argument or statement that you are attempting to prove. This will set up everything following the introduction. a
Most of your grade is based on the body paragraphs. This is where you will insert your topic sentence, assertions, pieces of evidence, and elaborations. and transitions. The topic sentence is one statement that initiates the main idea of the body paragraph. A topic sentence is solely a general statement. Next are the assertions. Generally, a body paragraph consists of two assertions. To make an appropriate assertion, use the following formula: what you are proving + strong verb + how you are proving it. Assertions are specific examples that relate to the topic sentence. Assertions should not include plot summary. Next, include a transition that leads into your evidence. Evidence must be encased with quotation marks. It is imperative that you cite your text evidence using the MLA format. Example: …, “evidence,” (author’s last name page #). Elaboration is a very crucial part of a body paragraph. Here, you are proving how your evidence connects to your assertion. A common problem is that people’s elaborations are merely plot summary. Elaborations are not for explaining what happened in this story. You are supposed to be digging deeper with your analysis. To help, ask these questions when writing an elaboration: What is the significance? Why is this important? How does it connect with a literary device? What is the purpose? Is there a theme? Next you introduce your next assertion using a transition and then inserting your assertion, following the same process. After the first body paragraph is complete, include a transition that leads into the next body paragraph. Make sure that the body paragraphs consist of different examples that connect to your main thesis.
Finally comes the clincher or conclusion. This is where you wrap up your ideas. Include your thesis, but do not make it word for word.
Do not expect to make a perfect essay the first time. Keep practicing because the more you write, the better you become at it. Oh, and one more thing, NO PLAGIARISM!
Get writing!