Can you suggest some tips which I can use to write a good essay for a competition?

Expert Answers
kateanswers eNotes educator| Certified Educator

When writing an essay for any purpose, being sure to start writing well before your due date is a good idea. If you can, try to set aside time to work on developing and editing your essay on a regular basis. 

A great way to get started is to brainstorm! If the essay competition has a theme, try to make some notes related to this theme. If you get to write on a subject of your choice, choose something you are passionate or knowledgeable about. During this brainstorming session, feel free to write down any ideas that come into your mind! What do you already know about the subject? What do you want to know about the subject? Have you already come up with a thesis or main idea for your essay? If not, no worries! You can create one after writing the body of your essay. Take this opportunity to write down as much as possible without being too worried about spelling or grammar- what's important is that you explore the ideas you might convey in your essay.

The next step is to do any necessary research. Having narrowed down what you already know and what you want to know, go forth and look it up! Try to find academic, reliable resources for your information.

When you feel you have written a sufficient amount about the general subject of your essay, you can begin to form an outline. What are the important points you want to focus on in your essay? Try to limit these main points to three- any more might become a challenge to write or read. Is there a chronological element to your subject? If you are writing on something that has happened in history, you could describe the events and their implications or affects on society. 

After your brainstorming and creating an outline with the main ideas of your essay, you can begin writing a draft. The introduction of your essay should do two things: tell us your thesis statement and introduce us to what your essay will be about! If you still aren't sure of your thesis, move on to writing the body. This is where you can really elaborate on those main ideas you've narrowed down. (Your thesis should be the overarching idea or lesson of the smaller "main ideas" of your essay.) Finally, your conclusion should wrap up any "loose ends" or ideas you did not resolve in the body of your essay. It should also refer back to the thesis statement, which you have supported in the body of the essay.

Now, step away! After writing your first draft, take a little time to process the ideas in your essay. I really recommend you sleep on it- take a nap or re-visit your paper the next day. Don't forget to take a break about every forty-five  minutes while writing, to give both your brain and body a chance to refresh. Taking a break or getting some sleep between periods of writing work helps your brain to synthesize and retain information. 

When you read through your paper to edit, try this: read through it once without making any changes, just to see how the paper "flows." Next, read through again and feel free to make any changes in spelling, grammar, or wording you feel necessary. Reading through once before making edits helps you keep the big picture of your essay in mind rather than focusing on individual components. You may like to try reading your paper aloud to hear how it sounds. Asking a friend, parent, or teacher to read through it can also be a great way to get some feedback.

Remember that whenever you work on your paper, try to make sure your space is free of distractions. Turn off your cellphone, avoid listening to music, and choose a quiet, well-lit space to work. (Libraries are ideal!) 

With good preparation, avoiding distractions, and making sure not to over-work your brain, I think you will create some top-notch writing!

Best of luck to you!

 

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