Why do you follow different steps for an essay? Do you really need to use it?Why do you follow different steps for an essay? Do you really need to use it?

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scarletpimpernel eNotes educator| Certified Educator

If you are referring to the process of writing such as pre-writing, rough draft, final draft, revision, etc., most teachers would tell you that it is so you can correct and learn from your errors and to realize that writing is a fluid process.  However, I have found that steps for writing an essay do not work for everyone.  Some students do not like or benefit from doing a lot of pre-writing; so they write their essays first and then go back and complete their "pre-writing" for a grade.

You simply need to find out what kind of process works best for you.  If you are someone who likes to get right into writing the essay, go ahead and do that, but just remember that you need structure to your writing so that your readers can clearly understand your argument, analysis, or whatever you are writing. Often prewriting (such as an outline or graphic organizer) helps you keep your essay logical and clear.

You have probably already discovered that writing teachers require different elements for their writing assignments; so try to establish your own process for writing now, but always keep your teachers' requirements in mind so that when you do produce that stellar essay, you earn the grade you deserve!  One of the most important aspects to consider when writing anything is who your audience is.  If your audience is your teacher only, then you might need to go through the steps of writing put forth by your teacher so that you please or persuade your "audience."

lfawley eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Writing is a process, and all processes have steps. We pre-write in order to gather the ideas that we need. We draft to place those ideas down on paper in a single text. We revise in order to make sure that we have said what we want to say in a manner that is coherent and follows a logical order. Finally, we edit so that our language is as clear and correct as possible thereby giving our final draft a polished and professional appearance and encouraging the reader to take us and what we have to say seriously. When we skip steps, we often end up with work that lacks flow or coherence, that goes off on tangents, that does not follow a logical order, or that is not viewed as well as we want it to be because of grammar errors that turn the reader off from the text itself. The steps can be followed using any number of different tactics from free writing or brainstorming and outlining at the research stage to a varying degree and number of revisions in the draft and revisions stage. The main point of the process is to make sure that we do all that we can to make the final draft as solid and as professional as possible.

ask996 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

While there are components to writing qualitiy essays, you do not have to follow steps. Essays should have effective beginnings, middles, and ends. They should use paragraphing effectively. The should use writing conventions such as imagery, figurative language, a variety of sentence types, and voice. (And yes even academic writing can use these.) The process in which one uses these is going to be different for each person, and we do our students a disservice if we require them to follow one correct process.

M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I am not good at following steps, to be honest, but I have learned that it is very neccessary to have a game plan, or system in place before you start writing.

Now, if you get bored or run out of ideas my suggestion to you is to work backwards. Just think of how you would make a powerful closing statement about a topic or issue that really attracts your attention, and build up to the beginning, where you basically state the main idea of what you just wrote.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
There is no one type of essay, and no one way to write it. However, it is a good idea to have some kind of plan before beginning. I am in flavor of following the standard five paragraph format. This allows us to easily follow the rule of three, which I do think helps most students. Three is the magic number.
copelmat eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Contrary to what we hear, there is no "the" writing process, there is only "a" writing process. The article is indefinite, not definite. Every individual finds a different path to effective writing. Our ultimate goal in propagating a writing process is not to create uniformity but to create insight.

nusratfarah | Student

Yes, to prepare a good essay, you need to follow certain steps.


Just think, in your question, you’ve typed your requirement in words dividing it into two parts; why? Hopefully because you wanted to make your objective clear-cut, and make others who would answer to the question understand your just need. Hence, clarity is the basic factor while you are writing an essay or any write-up. When you are a reader and you are going to evaluate and assess other’s write-ups, you have some demands. A similar criterion is applicable for you as a writer. That is why, in order to produce a good writing, it is wise to go through the following steps at least:

1. Brainstorming, 2. Writing the essay, 3. Citing, 4. Editing.

Always keep it in mind, whatever be the aim of your writing, it should be focused, arranged and organised. Then it will be an attractive one. And, following these steps is not only necessary to achieve a good grade, it would also develop your writing skill, and make you able to think in a more organised way. After all, writing is not only a product, rather, a process also.