Writing a perfect essay for your English class can be a challenging task. Luckily there’s many different ways to get there. I’m currently a senior studying English Creative Writing and one of the things I love to do is write essays for my English classes!
Throughout my years in university I’ve learned many useful tips and tricks to writing the best essay possible and I’d like to share them with you. Hopefully this helps you to write the perfect essay for your English class!
1. Read, Reread, And Rewrite The Prompt
Most of the work happens before you begin writing your perfect essay! First take some time to read and reread the prompt so you know exactly what you’re supposed to be writing about. Make sure you understand the prompt and if not, don’t be afraid to ask questions or go to office hours. Your teacher would love to explain it so you can understand what you’re next steps are!
One thing I like to do is to rewrite the prompt out in my own words. Sometimes prompts have several questions so I’ll separate them out and jot down a few notes of the first ideas or things that I’m going to address in my essay.
Write down the prompt clearly and keep that piece of paper with you throughout the entire process of writing your perfect essay. This will help you to stay on track with the prompt and make sure that you address everything the teacher has asked of you.
2. Do Your Research In A Notebook, Take Detailed Notes
Once you’ve written down the prompt you’ll want to start doing whatever research is required for your perfect essay. Sometimes that’s going to secondary sources, and sometimes it’s just from the reading that you’re writing your essay about.
Either way, you’ll want to take very detailed notes. Go back through your reading and mark things that stand out to you and have to do with the prompt. Write them all down neatly in a notebook so you can refer back to them when you start writing.
If you’re doing research do the same thing, keeping detailed notes in a organized matter. If you take good notes and record your ideas it’ll make the writing process much easier. It does take a lot of work to collect and gather all of your notes and research, but once you sit down to write the paper you’ll be extremely thankful you did!
3. Organize Your Notes And Research
Even if you try to make your notes very organized they can still get a bit out of hand! Once you’ve completed all of your research and note taking it’s a good idea to go back through and organize them.
Read all of your notes and highlight ideas that stand out to you and things that you want to include in your perfect essay. Be sure to refer back to your written prompt to make sure you’re staying on track!
4. Write Your Rough Draft
Great job! Now most of the hard work is complete and it’s time to take your notes of research and ideas and put it out on paper for your rough draft. First you’ll write your introduction paragraph with the thesis (depending on what type of essay you’re writing).
Then you’ll move on to the rest of your paper. Lucky for you, you have all of your notes, research, and ideas written down in a handy notebook you can refer to while writing your paper. You’ll find this makes the writing process flow very smoothly!
Don’t worry about making the perfect essay right now, just get everything written down remembering to stay on tract with the prompt because you’ll come back to this in a while to edit/rewrite it!
5. Wait A Day Or So
Now take a break! It’s easy to over work yourself when you’re writing essays and you’ll find that your words can start to become a bit jumbled. So take a break and do something fun. Focus on another subject, go hangout with friends, or whatever you want to do!
Come back to your essay in a day or so and then follow the next step! Don’t worry if you don’t have that much time to wait, just try and get away from writing your paper for at least an hour to let your mind rest.
6. Read And Edit Your Rough Draft
Now you’ll come back to your rough draft and start the editing/rewriting process. First read your paper out loud. See how it sounds. Is that what you were meaning to say? This can help you to make sure your paper is clear and to the point.
You can even have your friends or teacher help you with this process! But remember to stay true to yourself and your ideas so if a friend doesn’t like it because of the ideas, that’s not a reason to change your thesis!
The beautiful thing about English is that in many cases there’s a lot of different ways to interpret something and as long as you’re providing sufficient evidence, it’s not wrong!
Another thing you can do is separate your sentences on Microsoft Word. This will help you focus on each individual sentence and make sure that you’re getting the point across without sounding to wordy!
Now if you have time, wait again. Order a pizza with friends! Let your mind focus on other things so you can come back to your paper one more time and polish it up to make sure it’s the perfect essay.
8. Reread And Touch Up
You’re almost done! Just reread your essay one more time to make sure that it’s just the way you like. It’s important to not over do it, you can reread and rewrite too much. So just follow these steps as best you can and when you feel like your essay is great, then turn it in and don’t worry about it anymore!
9. Submit Your Perfect Essay
Great job, you’ve completed your perfect essay. Now turn it in and celebrate!