12 Essay-Writing Hacks That Really Work

By Dumb Little Man

December 10, 2018

Writing essays can be difficult and time-consuming, and this can be stressful when you have looming deadlines for different subjects. However, we’ve put together several essay writing hacks that you can use to ensure that you finish your essay on time and that it looks neat and professional.

Hire a Writing Service

how to improve essay writing skills

A writing service is a great way to get a professional and quality essay. Some services give you writing tips when you pay someone to write my paper, and you can use these tips to improve your own writing speed and style. You can even look at the finished product to see how people write typical college or higher education papers. This will give you a good direction to start in with your next paper.

Understand the Formatting Requirements

Did you know that there are several different essay formats available and what one professor wants may vary from what another professor requires? Although APA style is extremely popular, Chicago, AMA, and MLA are also popular choices. If you need help with specific formatting and sourcing, the Purdue Online Writing Lab can help you format your essay to the correct format.

Avoid Using Passive Voice

Using passive voice in your essays can make them confusing or difficult to read. Simply put, passive voice occurs when a verb does the noun in your essay rather than the noun does the verb. To spot passive voice, look for versions of “to be” like are, were, was, and is. Switch these out for active voice. An example would be:

Active Voice:

  • Active Voice: Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet

Passive Voice:

  • Passive Voice: Romeo and Juliet was written by Shakespeare

Proofread, Proofread, Proofread

If your professor looks over your essay and sees a lot of basic grammar errors, you’re going to look far less credible. It can damage your paper’s integrity, and this can negatively impact your grade. Take time to proofread everything and look up anything you have a question on. Microsoft Word will catch a lot of mistakes, and Grammarly will as well. You can also input your essay in Google Translate and have it read it back to you so you can listen for errors.

Transition from Paragraph to Paragraph

One fast way to make your essay seem disjointed is to not transition smoothly from paragraph to paragraph. Your closing sentences and topic should relate to your main thesis, and each paragraph should connect. Each new paragraph’s first sentence should directly relate to and mention the idea in the previous paragraph to make it flow together.

Use Long and Short Sentences

Writing short sentences is one way to avoid punctuation mistakes. It also makes your paper seem stiff and formal. You want to avoid this. Ideally, you should use a mix of long and short sentences throughout your essay. These different sentence lengths will help your ideas blend seamlessly together, and it makes your essay look and read smoothly.

Lengthen Your Essay with a Few Tricks

One of the biggest stumbling blocks people have is lengthening their essays to ensure that they reach the required page count. Start by looking at your main ideas of paragraphs. Could you split them into two ideas and go more in-depth? Also, take a look at your sentences and see if you can deepen your essay’s analysis by asking “because why?” If you can’t do either of these things, you’ll have to research your topic more.

Plan Out Your Essay

Before you start writing your essay, lay out your thesis statement. This is what you’ll build your essay around. Each point you have to support your main thesis will become a paragraph in your essay. You also want a topic and closing sentence that directly ties back to your thesis statement. Write this all out, and you now have the outline of your essay to fill in.

Write Using the Pomodoro Technique

For many people, focusing on one paper for hours with no breaks can lead to writer’s block. Avoid this by using the Pomodoro time management technique. Set a timer for 25 minutes. Once you reach the 25-minute mark, take a five-minute break to get up and stretch, go to the bathroom, make a snack, or get something to drink. At the end of your break, write for another 25 minutes. Continue this pattern until you finish your essay.

Block Distractions

Distractions like email, Twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms can wreak havoc on your concentration levels. You can avoid this by using the Freedom app. It works for both Mac and Windows, and you can choose which websites and apps it blocks and for how long. Use it side by side with the Pomodoro technique to maximize your productivity.

Use Wikipedia for Sources

While Wikipedia can be a great way to find sources for your essay, don’t use it for answers because anyone can edit it. Instead, input your relevant search query into Google and go to the corresponding Wikipedia page. From here, you can scroll down to the bottom of the page to find the sources. Use these sources in your paper or for your research.

Write Your First Draft By Hand

writing down list

Yes, almost no one writes anything by hand anymore. Writing your first or rough essay draft by hand can make things easier in the long run. You’ll be able to make notes in the margins and keep track of your thoughts all in one place. If you have ideas, jot them down as you’re writing. You can always incorporate them into your final draft.

Bottom Line

Writing essays can be stressful, but these 12 essay writing hacks can help smooth out the process. You can start with just one or try them all out to see which ones suit your needs and help you write a clean and polished essay in a fraction of the time.

Dumb Little Man

At Dumb Little Man, we strive to provide quality content with accuracy for our readers. We bring you the most up-to-date news and our articles are fact-checked before publishing.

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