Definition of an Essay
Essay writing skill is something everyone needs to learn. Essays are common requirement in secondary/high school and college/university. They are even required in the business world, just that they are usually termed “reports”. An essay can be defined as a piece of writing that gives information, as well as writer’s opinion on a subject.
Before letting you in on the steps to writing a good essay, and guidelines for writing them, let’s briefly delve into the four types of essays.
Four Major Types of Essays
- Persuasive/Argumentative Essays
- Narrative Essays
- Descriptive Essays
- Expository Essays
Persuasive / Argumentative Essays
Your main objective in this type of essay is to convince the reader to believe your line of reasoning or recommendation. A persuasive essay or argumentative essay, is a piece of writing where you use logic and reason to show that your point of view is more valid than any other.
You should present all sides of the argument, but must be able to communicate clearly why a certain position is correct.
Guidelines For Writing A Persuasive Essay
- Choose a position
- Do thorough research on your position and make sure you understand it
- Identify the most convincing evidence in your line of argument
- Try to also understand key points from the opposing view, and try to note the flaws
- Understand your audience and use the language, style they will most appreciate
You are basically telling a story when you write narrative essay. Your writing is based on real life experience. While telling a story may sound easy to do, the narrative essay challenges you to think and write about yourself.
Guidelines For Writing A Narrative Essay
- Consider the topic. Identify the experience that you want to write about
- Start with the draft. Putting your thoughts together in draft will help a lot. Spend a good deal of time drafting your recollections about the details of the experience. This method is used by many people, including famous writers. It is not easy to write a good story from the beginning to the end without some planning.
- Your point of view. Readers and listeners should clearly understand your role in the story, which is why it is so important to let them know all the details of the described event, as well as the explanation of your behavior in a particular situation.
- Proving and supporting. You should not only show your opinion but also give arguments that support it. You can provide readers with any facts and references that showcase your thoughts and the results of your conclusions.
- Avoid unnecessary statements – Do not give details that don’t mean anything to your story. They make your essay too wordy and can confuse readers.
- Use simple words and appropriate language in the text – The clearer your readers understand what you are telling them, the better their feedback will be.
- Read some narrative essay examples. The more you read them, the more you’ll be able to create a well-developed plot.
A descriptive essay requires you to describe something. It needs you to paint a picture by describing a person, place, object or even memory of a special thing. When writing descriptive essay, you should be detailed through the use of colourful words and sensory details.
Guidelines For Writing A Descriptive Essay
- Take time to brainstorm – If your instructor asks you to describe your favourite pet, make sure that you jot down some ideas before you begin describing it.
- Use clear and concise language – Choose your words carefully
- Use your senses – Remember, if you are describing something, you need to be appealing to the senses of the reader. Explain how the thing smelled, felt, sounded, tasted, or looked. Embellish the moment with senses.
- Leave the reader with a clear impression – If your reader can walk away from the essay craving to see the pet you just described, you are on your way to writing effective descriptive essays.
- Be organised – You must always strive to present an organised and logical description if the reader is to come away from the essay with a cogent sense of what it is you are attempting to describe.
An expository essay is an informative piece of writing that presents a balanced analysis of a topic. In an expository essay, you are required to explain or clarify a topic, using facts, statistics, and examples.
Guidelines For Writing Expository Essays
- Let your writing be clear and concise.
- Each body paragraph should cover only one topic and present one new idea. …
- Order your arguments accordingly.
- Cite your sources.
- Have a good conclusion. Such that restate your argument and summarise your facts.
How Long Should An Essay Be?
1: as long as your teacher/examiner asked you.
2: as short and informative as you can make it.