How to Start an Essay

No matter how much you prepare, it can be a challenge to START an essay. You’ve done all your research. You’re passionate about your topic. You have an amazing thesis statement and you’re ready to write!

You open up your computer to a Word Document and the black white page is just staring back at you. The curser is flashing, ready for you to start typing. But what do you write?

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Today on the show we are going to help you learn how to START an essay.

Looking for study tips, help with essay writing, or advice on how to be a better student? Welcome to The Homework Help Show, a weekly show where we teach, assist, and offer valuable insights for student life. From study hacks to writing tips, discussions about student mental health to step-by-step guides on academic writing and how to write a resume, we’ve got you covered. Want your questions answered? Write them below or join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #askHHG


Cath Anne: [00:00:00] You’ve done all your research. You’ve crafted an amazing thesis statement. And finally you’re ready to write your essay. You sit down at your desk and grab a cup of tea, crack open your computer, open a Word document, and stare at a blank page. The cursor is flashing and you’re wondering what to type next. No matter how much preparation you’ve done it can be difficult to start your essay. Today on The Homework Help Show we are going to walk you through the steps of how to start your essay.

Cath Anne: [00:00:52] Hi guys. And welcome back to our channel. My name is Cath Anne and this is the The Homework Help Show hosted by Homework Help Global. Welcome to episode 68 of the show. Now before we jump into the content I wanted to remind you that every Thursday at 9 a.m. Eastern standard time I go live on Instagram to chat with you guys. I try to answer some of your questions and we have a chat with people from all over the world. Make sure not to miss out on your opportunity to connect. I love connecting with you guys and can’t wait to do it again. Also I wanted to let you know that we have some amazing content and collaborations coming up for the fall. And I really don’t want you to miss out on anything. So make sure to hit the notification bell and that will let you know when we have a new content up on YouTube. We always upload new content on Instagram and on YouTube every Monday morning. So make sure to stay tuned for that. Also if you like this video make sure to subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss out on any of our other content. OK. Let’s jump in.

Cath Anne: [00:02:08] Now consider this quote by Jody Pico, “You can always edit a bad page.

Cath Anne: [00:02:15] You can’t edit a blank page.” Or this one by Louis L’Amour, “Start writing no matter what. The water doesn’t flow until the faucet is turned on.” These quotations are by writers talking about writing. They’re suggesting that the best way to start any piece of writing whether it’s an essay, a novel, a short story, or an exposé you just have to start. Don’t wait for the perfect opening sentence. Don’t mull your essay over for weeks on end before you start writing. Just get started and the words will flow. If you’ve done your research, picked a thesis, and picked a topic that you’re truly interested in just start writing and the words will flow. There are also many tools and techniques that you can use to start your essay. Let’s discuss.

Cath Anne: [00:03:13] Number one. Write an essay outline. Writing an essay outline is something that we’ve discussed in some of our other essay writing videos. We’ll link one up here for you to check out. An essay outline is going to give you a sense of what you want to write. It’s going to make your essay turn out more cohesive and it’s going to provide a roadmap for the main points in your essay. Writing an essay outline is a very effective way to organize your thoughts and figure out how you’re going to present them in your essay. Beginning with an essay outline is a great way to start your essay and set you on the road to successful completion.

Cath Anne: [00:03:53] Number two: want to know the best way to get an A on your next essay? See what I did there? I drew you in with an interesting sentence that made you want to keep listening. You can do the same thing with an essay in an essay. A strong interesting opening sentence is called a hook. Begin your essay with a hook to draw your reader in and keep them interested. Keep them wanting more. Now don’t stress if you don’t have a strong opening line right from the get go. Many writers save writing the hook until they’ve completed their essay. Then they have a better sense of what they’ve written and they can write a compelling opening line. Great hooks might include a fascinating little known fact about your topic. An interesting personal question, a startling statistic or an interesting quotation. Take the time to think about a strong opening sentence and craft the perfect hook.

Cath Anne: [00:05:03] Number three: Give your reader information about the content of your essay. An interesting hook will grab the reader and draw them in but then they’ll also want to know more information about what you will discuss in your essay. Use the rest of the introduction to explain and discuss what the reader can expect through the rest of your essay. In this portion of the essay you’ll want to inform your reader why you are writing about a specific topic and why it is important that you’re writing about that topic.

Cath Anne: [00:05:41] Tip number four of course include a thesis statement. We discuss the thesis statement in pretty much every video where we talk about an essay will link one up here so you can check it out. The thesis statement is your central argument or controlling topic in your essay. Make sure to craft a strong thesis statement. A thesis statement will play a central role in your introduction in order to tell your reader what to expect and what you’re arguing.

Cath Anne: [00:06:15] Tip number five: Set the tone for your essay. The introduction is the space that you’re going to use to tell your reader what you will discuss but it’s also the space that you’re going to use to tell the reader how you will discuss it. And this is the tone of your essay. The way you write your unique writing voice is what encourages readers to keep wanting more. It could also discourage them from following your essay. If the tone in the beginning of your essay is clear precise and engaging it is likely that the reader will want to keep reading. On the other hand if the tone is muddled this interesting perhaps a little confusing the reader may not want to keep reading. Picking the correct tone in the beginning of your essay is essential.

Cath Anne: [00:07:16] Number six: A short Introduction is better. It may seem like you have a lot of information to put forth in an introduction. However try to keep it short and to the point. If you can explain something in five sentences as opposed to six do it. Keep your language simple and concise. Yes you want to get readers interested but you also want to leave some information for the body of your research paper overall. Keep your introduction short and to the point.

Cath Anne: [00:07:59] OK guys that is it for me this week. I hope this episode was of benefit as always.

Cath Anne: [00:08:06] We love to hear from you so make sure to jump into the comments section below and leave us a little comment about whether you try any of these essay tips. I am wishing you the best of luck in getting started on your essays. Also make sure to check in with us on all of our social media platforms. All of our information is linked and listed in the description box below. If you like this video make sure to give it a thumbs up and subscribe to our channel. I also wanted to mention before we wrap up today that we have been working on some more English language content and we’re really excited about that. We hosted our first webinar just a week ago and we are super excited to keep going with this momentum. Let us know if there’s anything that you would like to see on our platform around English language content. Stay tuned for some more exciting announcements to come. Thank you guys so much for joining me. Good luck on those essays talk soon and take care.

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