Ah, the dreaded essay. No matter what the length or the subject, sitting down to write an essay can be an exercise in mental torture…that is, unless you know how to do it right. While you’ll find tons of tips on the Web and elsewhere for how to craft a perfect essay, there are three tips that you mustn’t do without.
Too many students make the mistake of opening up a Word doc and just going at it. Perhaps they just want to be done with it already or feel like they’ve been hit by a stroke of genius. Whatever the case, writing an essay without a clear vision of the final product is almost always a recipe for disaster. Very rarely will you end up where you want to without some sort of road map to get you there. While some students may be able to map out an essay in their heads, most of us need a written outline to guide us through the key topics and supporting details we want our essays to include. Thus, on your next writing assignment, begin with an outline instead of starting with the introduction.
Let it Out
Once you do have an outline in mind, then you have permission to just let it out. Why? Because if you worry over every detail of your essay (i.e. clarity, mechanics, organization, etc.), it will take forever to write a rough draft, and you’ll likely drive yourself crazy in the process. Give yourself permission to write the essay in a single sitting (or two, depending on the length of the assignment) with the reassurance that you can go back and refine it later. You’ll find that by using this method, you’ll get more done in less time, and your ideas will flow better as well.
Make it Better
After you have the first draft complete, it’s imperative to spend an equal (or even greater) amount of time improving the draft. Go over it with a fine tooth comb and make changes that will improve the clarity, cohesiveness, and eloquence of your essay. It’s best to review the draft for content issues first (i.e. clarity and strength of the argument) and then mechanical issues later (i.e. spelling, grammar, format, etc.)
As a final tip, it’s always advisable to have someone else look over your essay as well before submitting it for formal evaluation. While a friend, family member, or classmate might be able to assist you to some extent, remember that these people will inevitably approach your work with some degree of bias. They may like your writing because they like you, for instance, or they might fear making constructive comments because they don’t wish to hurt your feelings. That’s why it’s preferable to have an outsider take an objective look at the final draft of your essay. The less acquainted you are with your editor, the better. The professional editors at ThesisEditor.co.uk can provide you with unparalleled editing services, so that your essay will meet and exceed not only your standards, but more importantly, those of your instructors!