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Writing great essays is a skill that can be learned with persistent practice. You’re not going to be able to write an A+ paper on your first try, but hard work and practicing a few of these rules will certainly improve your chances of getting better grades in less time. Here are some things you should know about writing a good essay:
It’s not enough to read just a few paragraphs from your textbook and conclude that you have researched your topic. Depending on how much time you have, try paying a visit to your school’s library and reading up on some supporting information on your topic. You might also want to try and reading up some background info that you can find online. The key is getting as much, well-rounded information possible.
You should never start a writing assignment without first creating at least a basic outline that organizes your main arguments and lists the pieces of evidence you plan to use. Everyone has a different style or preference when it comes to making an outline – either detailed or simple. Whichever you choose is up to you, just be sure to keep it with you when you sit down to write so that you can refer to it throughout.
Your first draft should be written as quickly and as efficiently as possible. Don’t stop to make corrections, you’ll have time to this later. It’s more important to get down all of your ideas in a single sitting. It doesn’t matter if something seems out of place or repetitive. You’ll have time to make your essay stronger in the next stage.
The act of revising is going through your entire essay and finding ways to improve on its content by either rearranging content, rewriting content, or taking out anything that seems extraneous. Don’t overlook this stage in the writing process. Many writers will try to skip this, but it can be all the difference between a stellar and a mediocre grade.
Lastly, you want to put in the finishing touches. Edit your paper for clarity. This means looking at your sentences and word choice to find ways to say what you want in easier terms. Don’t use a $1 dollar word when a $0.10 cent word will suffice. Be sure to check for errors. Start at the paper level and work your way down to the paragraph and then the sentence level.