Secrets of Writing a Two-Page Essay Quickly
Writing may be quite a stressful experience for many students. It is especially so when the students are pressed for time. The completion of such a task requires specific skills and sufficient practice. You need to be well-organized, to have a specific plan, and to understand the core principles of writing. We recommend you to start with this article, as it includes major secrets to writing successfully and quickly.
Part 1. First, Get Organized
- Ensure you are ready to write now. Do not get distracted. Make sure your surrounding is comfortable and you have all the necessary tools for this process. We recommend working in the library for those who need silence and stopping by a coffee-shop for those who prefer a little background noise.
- Select a topic in case it has not been assigned. A good essay should have a clear focus. Hence, it is crucial to have a clearly defined topic. We recommend writing about something you know or are interested in. Remember that a two-page essay requires a narrow topic so that it is discussed adequately and sufficiently.
- Be in the know of your subject. You should understand the phenomenon you are going to write about. Otherwise, you will spend much time on the preliminary research and may even come to a point where you will need to change the topic and start anew.
- Proper organization helps. To be more precise, if you have some notes taken during the research, make sure they are organized constructively. Arrange them in a comprehensive order. In case you are planning to use online resources, pull up all the webpages needed. It is also crucial to get acknowledged with the instructions on this stage of writing process. Make sure you do follow them.
- Thoughts should be organized. Make sure that you are totally concentrated, and in case there is something still on your mind, just deal with it before you start writing.
Part 2. Drafting the Essay
- We recommend brainstorming your thesis statement. For instance, you can always use a questioning technique for that: just think about your topic, start with basic questions, and proceed with more specific and controversial ones.
There is also a branching technique: try imagining your topic as a tree and write the main idea in the middle of the paper, and after that “branch” out from this core element, adding ideas, questions and thoughts to the central topic.
- Develop a thesis statement. This is the most essential part of the whole essay as far as it tells the readers exactly what you are talking about. To be more precise, a thesis statement explains the points of the essay clearly and concisely.
For instance, if you are writing an essay about college sports, a vague and poor thesis will be “College sports are very controversial nowadays”, whereas a good one is here: “College athletes should be provided with a salary for playing this kind of sport.” This thesis is narrowed, vivid, and sufficient for a two-page paper.
- Thoughts should be put on paper. As soon as you get your thesis, start putting the rest of your ideas down. Create a thorough and detailed outline that will make the rest of the writing process much easier and faster. An outline is an excellent tool for starting a good paper.
An outline may be in the form of a list or a set of ideas. It all depends on your comfort in writing and general vision of the essay.
- We recommend specific examples to be included. A good essay comprises an introduction, several body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Examples should be provided in body paragraphs, but you can always mention them earlier briefly.
- Do not forget citing. We recommend citing sources in your outline so that you have it all together when completing the essay. This will definitely save you time during the writing process. One more crucial point: make sure you know a particular style of citation that is required. Check your instructions if you are not sure. Some of the most frequently used styles are APA, MLA, Harvard, and Chicago.
Part 3. Writing the Essay
- We recommend you start writing with body paragraphs, not with an introduction. If you have a thorough and constructive outline, this part will go quite quickly. A short essay usually has 3-4 body paragraphs. A major purpose of each paragraph is to support your thesis.
Each body paragraph should have a topic sentence that clarifies what the paragraph is about. Moreover, remember to include specific supporting examples.
- The introduction and conclusion should be written last, because in this way, you will have a holistic picture of the essay and it will be easier for you to frame into proper a beginning and end. An introduction is a road map for the whole paper and it should make a reader interested to continue reading it. A conclusion “wraps up” the whole essay, reminding a reader of the major argument and its significance.
Imagine your introduction in the form of the inverted pyramid. Place a broad statement in the beginning to set the scene, and then narrow down the focus until you reach your thesis. Remember to place your thesis statement – properly paraphrased, of course, – at the end of the conclusion.
- Use concise and clear language in the essay. Never try to sound “fancy”. Clear statements are the must so that different readers can understand you. Also, do not be redundant. If you can say something in two or three words, never use more.
Be careful and avoid the passive voice. It is inappropriate in academic writing. We also recommend you to avoid using such wordy constructions as “It is believed that”, “It is known that” or “This is suggestive of that.” You can always use such alternatives as “People believe that” or “This suggests that.”
- The relevant style and tone are essential. Refer to your guidelines, reread the topic of the essay, and keep the required and appropriate style for the whole essay.
There are short essays, in which it is appropriate to refer to the first person via “I.” This may be the case for a personal or persuasive essay. If you are not sure, check this aspect with your instructor.
We also recommend aiming for parallel structures in sentences. Sentences rather often end up sounding clunky. Hence, a parallel structure should be employed.
- Transitions are helpful. A good essay shows connections between each constituent element clearly. Transitions are the illustrations of the relationship between your points and thesis. Use transitions either at the end of a paragraph or integrate them into the topic sentence of the next paragraph. The following transition words may be used: in comparison, otherwise, similarly, as a result, etc.
Part 4. Editing the Essay
- The editing process requires a pause after writing. A properly edited paper often upscales the paper from a “C” to “B” or even “A” paper. We recommend clearing your mind, taking a break so that to evaluate your essay more objectively before editing.
- Remember: technology is here to help. Apparently, you will read your essay through and will correct all the errors, but do not hesitate to take the advantage of spell checkers. Just make sure you reread the paper after that. On the other hand, remember that the “grammar check” available in word processors may be irrelevant and even make wrong corrections. Therefore, use technology, but do not rely solely on it.
- Read out loud the edited paper. If you are lucky, you can even persuade your dad or friend to listen to it and give you feedback.
- Check your citations. Each source should be properly cited. It is a must to give credit for the specific facts, as well as direct quotes and any ideas that are not yours.
- Get rid of unnecessary words. Yes, again.
- Develop your title. Make it creative and simultaneously concise. The title should be informative and comprehensive.
- Prepare the paper to the final review. Check whether all points are clear and relevant, all the transitions are smooth, and all the errors are corrected. We recommend reading thoroughly every word – in silence and absolutely focused. If you are satisfied with the final version, do not hesitate and turn the essay in. Good luck!