I threw this together back in my Editor-in-Chief days and one of my old writers recently asked me to make it available to the world. Here you go, world.
Yo gnashgabs, guess what?
Essays, despite their reputation for daunting complexity, can actually be fairly simple in structure:
Simply start off with some sort of hooky introduction to draw the reader in (e.g., “Yo gnashgabs, guess what?”), and before you know it you’ll be ready to insert your Well-Defined Thesis Statement. And those are a piece of cake!
A Well-Defined Thesis Statement is nothing more than an insightful declaration bolstered by some supporting evidence; like Point 1, Point 2, and Point 3.
Once you’ve come up with yours, slam that WDTS on the table with authority. Then glitz things up with an enticing transition to help keep your reader intrigued. Maybe it’s a charming anecdote or intriguing simile (e.g., “an analogy is like a thought with another thought’s hat on”), but either way it’s vital to get to the meat of your piece quickly…
Because Point 1 is really, really important to bolstering the argument you presented in your Well-Defined Thesis Statement, and you need to get to explaining why that is with your pretty word-thoughts. Make sure to support Point 1 with a fact, quote, or something important looking though, as 64% of all writers forget to provide evidence. After that, it’s only a matter of writing a concluding sentence that summarizes Point 1 and clarifies why it helps support your Well-Defined Thesis Statement.
Now do the same thing you did with Point 1 for Points 2 and 3.
Finally, you’ll reach your Conclusion, and the secret to these is a cinch: take that Well-Defined Thesis Statement you already wrote and slightly reword it a bit, only sound 3x more confident than before (since you just proved your argument 3x over with your three very thorough, well-defended body paragraphs).
Then, if you really want to tie a nice bow on top of everything, consider throwing in another line or two that gestures majestically beyond the scope of your piece to reveal the keen magnitude of your brilliance. It’s that kind of thing that will really change the world.