In the essay "Young and Dyslexic? You've Got It Going On" by Benjamin Zephaniah, the author writes a first person account of his own struggles with dyslexia as an encouragement to young people who may be having some of the same difficulties. Dyslexia is a condition that makes reading difficult, and people can have it despite being highly intelligent. Zephaniah tells of having problems in school, of teachers calling him stupid, and the difficulties he experienced with dyslexia being compounded by the fact that he is Black. Because he is now a famous author of poems, novels, and children's literature, he intends his personal testimony to inspire others to persevere despite obstacles they may face.
The language in the essay is informal and familiar, as if Zephaniah is speaking intimately and one-on-one with readers. The author intends this informal tone so that he can build rapport with his readers. His intention is to reassure young people who are dyslexic, and he feels that he can do it more effectively in language that is easy for them to understand.
The essay is structured similarly to a fictional story in which the protagonist is first confronted with a seemingly insurmountable problem, struggles to overcome the problem, and then triumphs in the end. Zephaniah begins by describing the difficulties he encounters at school with his dyslexia and unsympathetic teachers unwilling to acknowledge his obvious intelligence in spite of it. He is even "thrown out of a lot of schools" for "arguing with teachers" and "being a rude boy and fighting." However, he learned to observe other people's bad habits and avoid them, stand up for his "self-belief," and get others to help him in writing his thoughts down. It reassured him to finally find out what dyslexia is and that it has nothing to do with his intelligence. He is now able to reassure other people with dyslexia that it can make them more creative and that they can use it to their advantage.