What are some insights on writing an opening paragraph of an essay discussing the most current and informative research regarding interpersonal communication in a romantic relationship? The keywords are "excitement in romantic relationships", "good communication," "social media and technology", and "relationship maintenance."

The main job of the opening paragraph is to grab the reader's attention and alert the reader to what the main body of the essay is going to be. Introductory paragraphs usually briefly touch on key concepts or keywords in order to convince readers that the topic is worth reading about.

Expert Answers

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Regardless of what your paper's intended topic is, the opening paragraph isn't meant to go into much detail about the paper's topic. An opening paragraph's goal is twofold. First, the opening paragraph must grab the reader's attention. Second, the opening paragraph highlights what the paper is going to be about and generally includes a thesis statement.

I am going to assume that you already have some of the "current and informative research regarding interpersonal communication in a romantic relationship." For the most part, you are not going to do anything with that research in the opening paragraph. You are going to briefly mention it in the paragraph and let your reader know that you will be discussing those pieces of research in depth in the main body of the paper, but the introductory paragraph is not the location to begin discussing the research and presenting your reader with massive amounts of detail and data. You have to hook your reader first and convince him or her that the following information is worth reading.

Because hooking your reader is crucial, the very first sentences of the introductory paragraph are some of the most important sentences in the entire paper. The reason for this is because those first few sentences will often determine whether or not a reader even finishes reading your paper. If your reader is bored after two sentences, they are not likely to keep reading (or they are not likely to give you a good grade).

Hook your reader by asking him or her a question. A question begs to be answered, and your reader is likely to immediately begin thinking of possible answers to the question, while also wondering what your answer to that question is. That is an engaged and hooked reader. Another tactic is to use a quote. Chances are that you have found a fairly juicy quote about communication in a romantic relationship from your research. Lead with that quote, and be sure to use additional quotes. The quotation marks alert your reader to the fact that the words inside the quotes are somehow supremely important. Your reader will wonder why. My final suggestion is to use a bold statement that is designed to get an emotional rise out of your reader. Advertisers frequently target audience emotions rather than logic centers because emotionally engaging someone is usually far more effective.

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