Thursday, May 2, 2013

Essay Writing - A Writing Journal

Essay. Your English teacher says the word aloud and the whole class cringes. Despite my writing background, even I don't jump out of my seat after this announcement. Essays are tricky but they're an essential part of both writing and reading. Today I will tell you some things to put on your checklist before printing that torturous assignment.

First of all, you must understand that you are making an argument using the author's text as proof. You are not trying to be the author. What you took away from the story might be different from what the author intended (or what your teacher taught you). However, as long as you have textual evidence to prove it, it doesn't matter. The only "wrong" essay is one without evidence or one that doesn't answer the question given.

With all this ground to cover, make sure you're original. I guarantee you every English teacher has read an essay with "which makes them a better person" as the stand, or with "have you ever felt..." as the opening line. I know it might be easier to start that way, but it evidently downgrades your writing. Not only will your essay automatically grab your readers attention, but you have a better chance of improving your writing further. Real writers have to think outside the box each time they open a word document. You better start now.

Lastly, take a breath, and step away. I know with a close deadline coming you don't think you have time to do so, but even a small break can work wonders. It can even be twenty minutes during which you go watch a TV show. Any work of writing does better with a pair of fresh eyes. Focusing so hard you pull out your hair will do you no good.

Have any other essay writing tips? Have you ever tried one of these? How did it work for you? Leave a comment below!

No comments:

Post a Comment