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Enhance Your Essay Writing Skills

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Unfortunately, students are usually not born with outstanding writing skills. In nearly every case, students need to practice - even if they do not want to in order to become a better writer. Fortunately, there are several easy tricks to incorporate that will enhance even the most novice essay writer’s skills. Here they are:

  1. Read good writing.
  2. Anyone who writes for a living will tell you that reading is the first step to becoming a better writer. This does not mean that you should spend your time reading text messages or cereal boxes. You should read novels, journals, blogs, newspaper articles, or memoirs. While you read, look for sentences, words, and paragraphs that you could emulate in your own work.

  3. Have fun with the hook.
  4. The hook is the one place that you can really have fun in an essay. There are several creative techniques you can use, like the anecdote, the series of rhetorical questions, or the startling statistic. Your hook can be more than one sentence; so, as long as you explain the connection to the rest of the paper in the bridge, your readers will understand what you did. Your hook can be fictional or 100% true, as long as it is designed to get the reader’s attention.

  5. Incorporate the prompt into the thesis.
  6. When you are creating an essay for a grade, you want to show that you learned something. The best way to do it so incorporate keywords from the prompt into your thesis statement. You do not need to rewrite the entire prompt, but use the main idea with your opinion. Your instructor will appreciate knowing exactly what you are trying to support in the essay. If you do not include words from the prompt in your thesis statement, your instructor might not know if you understand the assignment.

  7. Use transitions.
  8. Good writing includes transitions because they help the reader know what is really happening in the paper. Even though it is obvious that the reader is moving through the essay, transitions help keep the topic connected. Good writers will use transitions at the beginnings and endings of paragraphs, but better writers will use them in paragraphs and sentences, too.

  9. Memorize a body paragraph acronym.
  10. In order to properly write the body paragraphs, you can follow a template. Many of them use acronyms so students can easily remember them. There are PEEL, MEAL, SEXY, and other types of paragraphs that students can use. These acronyms help students remember how to arrange their thoughts and the examples that support them.

  11. Vary sentence beginnings.
  12. This is an easy way to enhance your writing. After you have written your essay, highlight the first word of every sentence. If you have too many similar beginnings, then you need to make changes. You might have to rearrange entire sentences, but it will make your writing flow smoothly. After you have altered the beginnings, look at the lengths. Short sentences create choppy, hurried sensations, while long sentences slow down the paper.

  13. Remove “you”.
  14. This post contains “you” because it involves advice, but when you write an academic essay, the only time you should use “you” is when it appears in a direct quote. Instructors are irritated by the use of “you” because they feel like their students are telling them what to do. The “you” is unknown and therefore not appropriate in a proper paper.

  15. Write a conclusion.
  16. Your papers will be significantly better when they have conclusions. You can use the last paragraph to restate main ideas, or you can use it to drive home your point. Some writers use it get the reader to take action, too. Whatever you use the conclusion for in your paper, you should know that it will nicely wrap up your paper and create finality.