Guide to Writing a Basic Essay

Write the Introduction and Conclusion

Your essay lacks only two paragraphs now: the introduction and the conclusion. These paragraphs will give the reader a point of entry to and a point of exit from your essay. Introduction

The introduction should be designed to attract the reader's attention and give her an idea of the essay's focus.

  1. Begin with an attention grabber.

     The attention grabber you use is up to you, but here are some ideas:

         * Startling information
This information must be true and verifiable, and it doesn't need to be totally new to your readers. It could simply be a pertinent fact that explicitly illustrates the point you wish to make.
If you use a piece of startling information, follow it with a sentence or two of elaboration.

         * Anecdote
An anecdote is a story that illustrates a point.
Be sure your anecdote is short, to the point, and relevant to your topic. This can be a very effective opener for your essay, but use it carefully.

         * Dialogue
An appropriate dialogue does not have to identify the speakers, but the reader must understand the point you are trying to convey. Use only two or three exchanges between speakers to make your point.
Follow dialogue with a sentence or two of elaboration.

         * Summary Information

  2. If the attention grabber was only a sentence or two, add one or two more sentences that will lead the reader from your opening to your thesis statement.

  3. Finish the paragraph with your thesis statement.