How to Prepare for Essay Writing Competitions

10/27/2017

If youre good with words and have a passion for writing, you might want to turn your creativity into a career, or at least win some prizes in essay writing competitions.

Just as a good gambler wins a lot of cash if theyre skilled and stay informed – by reading online reviews as these Halloween theme slot reviews -, a good writer needs to prepare in advance for essay contests.

If you would like to up your game and stand out from the crowd, read on to see how you must prepare in order to increase your chances of having your essay chosen as the winner.

Good essay writing is achieved through practice, so the more you write, the better you become at it.Practice is key to honing your skills, so before entering an essay writing competition, make sure to read extensively and from various sources on the subject and take notes. Then write as much as you can. Just take a piece of paper and write down your thoughts, speak your heart and mind, as an essay is essentially your point of view on a certain topic.

Also, it would be a good idea to go to a writing workshop. These are designed to provide assistance at any stage of the writingprocess, from initial brainstorming to final drafts. So if you feel you need advice, get it from professionals.

Each competition has a few rules and requirements one needs to know before entering, like theme, word and character count, and you need to pay attention to these details if you dont want to waste your work. It is always better to limit your essay to minimum pages with cohesive and well-reasoned arguments. Keep it simple, but make sure your essay is creative, well supported and complete.

This brings us to the next point: originality and creativity. The most important thing is to avoid being predictable. Dont write what others expect to read; its way too common. Dont write about shared opinions or general things, and dont use clich lines; other contestants will surely do this. Use your imagination and analytical thinking, be confident and trust your gut.

Express your opinion in clear words and with solid arguments. Also, use the sources provided to support your arguments and ideas this will definitely be taken into account by those who judge the essays.

Our next tip is to avoid overwriting? If you are not sure how to check this aspect of your work, count your adjectives and adverbs. Try to limit yourself to a couple per page.

Additionally, have a well thought-out plan. Structure your essay and write each part as planned. The body of the essay is the most important part, so try writing it first.

Conclude your essay by reinforcing your ideas and dont forget to revise and proofread everything. Read through your essay at the end to make sure it is compelling. Check how your story comes across, whether you are using the right voice, and if you are communicating everything you intend to. Also, make sure it is grammatically correct. Most competitions also grade on grammar, spelling and use of Standard English.

At the end, you can check the essay requirements one more time and go through them point-by-point with your polished work in front of you to make sure you’ve hit them all.

Types of Essays

05/04/2017

Dozens of various types of essays can often make student’s head dizzy with confusion. However, essentially it all boils down to four main types, each following its own set of basic rules. Mastering rules for each type will help you immensely on the way to academic success.

Expository

An expository essay involves investigating and presenting an idea, and supporting the presentation with an argument and evidence. It is an informative piece of writing that presents a balanced analysis of a topic. Expository essays are usually written through comparison and contrast, definition, example, and the analysis of cause and effect. There is a specific structure that expository essays should follow:
• Begin with a short and clear thesis statement.
• Provide proof to back up your thesis statement in the main body of the text.
• Transitions between paragraphs should follow a logical path.
• Summarize everything in the conclusion.

Descriptive

In this type of essay, you are expected to describe something. This type of essay allows for much more creative freedom as the main idea is to paint an image in the reader’s mind.
Some tips to help you with this kind of essay are:
• Brainstorm before you put fingers to keyboard.
• Get into details to paint a more vivid picture in your reader’s mind.
• Refer to more than one sense: use not just visual but also auditory, gustatory, olfactory and tactile impressions.
• Try to explain in detail how you feel about the thing described.

Narrative

A narrative essay usually involves the telling of a story. There are two common types of narrative essays – short stories and book reports. No matter what type of narrative essay you’re writing, you should follow some basic guidelines:
• Your story should have all the main elements: characters, plot, setting, etc.
• A book report is meant to be an informative narrative about the book and not a retelling of the entire book.
• Even narrative essays should have a point. Try building towards a conclusion or making a personal statement.
• Choose a point of view for your essay and stick with it. Narrative essays are usually written in the first person, from the standpoint of the writer.

Persuasive/argumentative

This type of essay will be similar to an expository essay in that you will be exploring a topic and collecting and evaluating evidence. However, unlike an expository essay, you will be taking a stance for or against an argument or an idea. The goal of the persuasive essay is to use logic, evidence and argument to convince the reader to accept your point of view.
The format of the persuasive essay is like the expository essay: it too consists of introduction including the thesis statement, the main body of the text presenting arguments and evidence and a concluding paragraph. In addition, a persuasive essay will also include your opinion regarding the given topic. You should present all sides of the argument, but must be able to convey clearly and without equivocation why you think a certain position is better than the other.

 

How to Use Internet for Writing

04/29/2017

No matter what kind of writing you do, the internet provides an abundance of helpful information. In this article, you will read about tips for doing high-quality and efficient research online, gaining reliable information and using this information in your writing. Another useful article you might enjoy is How To Use the VideoSlots Bonus Code.

Research takes time. You should plan doing your research before starting to write, so that you can get familiar with the topic, allow yourself to form an opinion and gain more confidence in writing about it. Only through patient sifting will you achieve the depth of understanding that your topic deserves. The more time you devote to research, the better your final product is going to be.

Make sure your sources are reliable. Remember: anyone can make a webpage and simply because you find information online doesn’t make it credible. It’s better to find from three to five reliable sources than to use fifteen suspicious sources. Give priority to information from government sources, academics, and nationally recognized news organizations. Use websites with expertise in your topic of interest and subject-specific databases. Library databases and similar search engines provide access to peer-reviewed research, which is the gold standard for academic study. Also, use several different sources to verify information and get the bigger picture.

Look at the date. It’s important to make sure that your information is as up-to-date as possible, especially if you are researching a medical or scientific topic. Scientific consensus constantly changes as the new data emerges. Check when the article or website was published and look for the most recent articles you can find.

Cite your sources. Don’t copy/paste – you don’t want to be accused of plagiarism and get a failing mark on your thesis. Understand the information you are provided and write it down in your own words. Citing sources will also allow you to return to them later, and will allow others to verify your sources themselves. MLA and APA are two very respectable citing methods. Bibliography entries for webpages traditionally consist of the author of the web article, the title of the article, the site’s web address, and the date on which you accessed the article or page.

Make notes, bookmark and stockpile good content as you go: highlight or write down points that are important to mention in your essay or those you think could be useful. These points will be a basis for your outline. This way you will gather all the material into organized piles to sift through later. Then read information again and single out the most important points and arguments to use in your paper.

First draft: After going through enough sources for a good foundation, start making your first draft. Single out important thematic wholes in your text. Add a few sentences to each of them. This is a brainstorming phase: relax and write whatever comes to your mind. Read information which is presented in your sources and try to formulate your thesis statement. This process will help you organize your essay and realize which information is still missing from it.

Delve deeper: In the next stage of the research you should start narrowing your search while looking for the more specific and hard to find information. Add this new information to your text. This is also the part where you are writing, rewriting and reorganizing your text until you are completely happy with it. By now, you should have already decided which argument or position you support and why. Write that down in a clear, logical and concise manner and you are done! Congratulations!

Best Books About Essay Writing

04/27/2017

Writing well means constantly improving yourself. Here are some excellent writing guides that can walk you through the process and help you with structure, grammar, vocabulary and style, as well as reveal why writing is one of the most fulfilling activities anyone can do.

Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr: this classical short writing style guide comprises eight “elementary rules of usage”, ten “elementary principles of composition”, “a few matters of form”, a list of forty-nine “words and expressions commonly misused”, and a list of fifty-seven “words often misspelled”. It will give you all the basic rules you need to begin your writing adventure.

Writing Essays for Dummies: part of the famous series, written in their recognizable simple and readable style, this book will give you useful tips and structured advice and provide helpful techniques to improve your writing. Especially meant for students struggling with writing assignments.

100 Ways to Improve your Writing by Gary Provost: Filled with professional tips and a wealth of instructive examples, this valuable, easy-to-use handbook can help you solve many writing dilemmas. This book will teach you how to master the “flow” and communicate your thoughts in an engaging way.

Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott: if you are seeking a deeper insight into what being a writer really looks like, you should read this beautifully written biographical account on author’s struggles in her own writing career. The author shares her valuable experience, stressing the importance of process, writing regularly, brainstorming, as well as offering advice on technical details like developing characters, plot and dialogue. Moreover, you will discover how to use writing as a cathartic way of dealing with life’s troubles.

Finally, don’t forget to surround yourself with great authors. Reading is one of the best ways to improve writing!

How to Structure Your Essays

04/26/2017

In most cases, writing well means planning ahead. Structuring you essay in advance is thus very important part of the writing process. Think of the structure as the skeleton to which you should add flesh and blood.
When making the first outline of your essay you should ask yourself three main questions: What is your topic? What is it that you want to say about this topic? How, in what order are you going to present your thoughts on this topic? Your main guideline throughout should be clarity. Good structure will help you tremendously in making sure that your readers can understand what you mean and why you mean that.
The basic structure of every essay comprises introduction, body and conclusion.

Introduction: it shouldn’t be too long (few paragraphs at most) and should make clear what the rest of the essay is going to be about. It should contain your thesis statement, as well as the summary of your main arguments.

Body: The body of the text is where you develop your argument and realize the goal set in the introduction. The most important purpose of body is to offer proof (evidence and/or arguments) to support your thesis statement.
Body is usually divided into sections and subsections, especially in longer essays. These are in turn divided into paragraphs. Each of these smaller units of text should have a specific purpose within the whole. To avoid confusion, you should only discuss one sub idea of the thesis statement in each paragraph. Paragraphs should not be too wordy: keep them around 5 sentences long. Think about what you want to say in each and why. You should also make sure that each follows logically from the other. Without a logical path to follow throughout the essay, the reader could end up lost in it.

Conclusion: The last few paragraphs of your essay are reserved for concluding remarks on what you hope to have accomplished in the essay and why you believe you have proven your point by arguments and evidence presented. Don’t just repeat the thesis, expand on it by discussing the evidence you revealed. Don’t present any new information or ideas into the conclusion.

Example of an outline form:
1. Introduction
2. Body:
Argument 1
– evidence for Argument 1
Argument 2
– evidence for Argument 2
Argument 3
– evidence for Argument 3
3. Refutation of opposite side (This point is necessary for argumentative type of essay)
4. Conclusion