How to Write a Persuasive Essay
The main goal of a persuasive essay is to convince the reader of your strong opinion on a certain topic. Persuasive essays can be written on any type of subjects: education, lifestyle, politics etc. The first thing you need to have is a stance on whatever you’re going to write about. The second necessary thing is a detailed guide on how to write a persuasive essay, and we’re ready to help you with the latter.
Guide on How to Write a Persuasive Essay
Step 1: Writing in a Persuasive Way
- Choose one side. Writing a persuasive essay, you can’t jump from one opinion to another and avoid taking a stance. You need to be a strong supporter of one argument and be ready to back it up no matter what. This means predicting counterarguments and be ready to cover all aspects of your argument.
- Begin with clear sentences. The first sentence of every paragraph should shortly introduce the reader to the general content of the paragraph so you need to make it as clear as possible. The best approach is to use short sentences that don’t have any complex constructions. Later you can deliberate, but the first sentence should always be simple.
- Persuade the readers in different ways. The name of a persuasive essay says it all, you need to persuade the readers that your opinion is right. To do it, you will have to use different techniques because if you use only one, the readers will feel like they’re being manipulated. Appeal to facts, numbers, references etc.
- Be firm. Persuasive essay is not a place to be insecure. If the reader notices that you’re trying to make your arguments sound like just an option, they won’t be convinced. You need to be a strong supporter of your ideas and a real expert in proving them.
Step 2: Getting Started
- Take your time. Your argument will be the main focus of a persuasive essay so make sure you start writing about something that has a potential to be developed in a full paper. Read the prompt, contemplate it, and make notes if needed to find the ideas you’ll be able to back up. If you want to persuade someone, you first need to believe in the idea yourself.
- Think about the audience. One of the tricks of writing a persuasive essay and being good at it is knowing who your target reader is. Even if you do it just for the grade, think about a potential scenario when your paper would be read by ordinary people. Different people perceive information differently, and you need to find the right way to persuade those people who would be related to the discussed topic.
- Write the thesis. The thesis statement is the core of the essay so you should pay some extra attention to it. It’s a good idea to get started with this exact sentence and then build the text around it. The point is to be straightforward and describe your opinion in the clearest way possible.
- Make a research. Even if you know the topic well, you might still need to get some extra information to cover it completely. You should do it before you start writing because then you can accumulate and analyze information to find what you want to use and what is not necessary.
Step 3: Make a Draft
- Get a hook. The very first sentence is almost as important as the thesis statement because that’s the first thing your readers will encounter. That’s why you need to make an effort and attract their attention quickly. Don’t hesitate to use different tricks here, everything is good as long as it does the job and makes the reader want to continue with the rest of the text.
- Build up the body. To support your main idea, one argument won’t be enough. Usually, a persuasive essay has at least three paragraphs in the body part, each dedicated to different aspects of the discussed topic. Also, don’t forget to make a smooth transition from one paragraph to another by mentioning the following idea in the last sentence of the previous argument.
- Mention a counterargument. You’re obviously supposed to be a strong supporter of your personal argument, but acknowledging the possible counterarguments that might arise will only make your essay more convincing. By doing that you show that you’re not scared of criticism and are prepared to battle it. Just make sure you don’t make your counter paragraph too long because then you create an impression that you’re also believing in it.
- Write the conclusion. Of course, you need to finish your paper with a logical conclusion. In a persuasive essay, it means restarting the key points using different wording. You might also call for action if the issue is something that needs to be solved, but this part is optional.
Step 4: Finishing Touches
As you can see, writing a persuasive essay is an extensive task. However, following this plan you’ll be able to do it quickly and successfully.
- Take a break. Once you’re done with writing your essay, let it sit on your desk for a bit. If you plan the process in advance, you should have enough time for that. By reading the essay later, you’ll be able to spot things you’ve missed in the beginning and just evaluate it from a whole new perspective.
- Read the draft. You might see the draft as something unimportant, but in reality, it’s the stage where most mistakes will happen. In order not to transfer anything unworthy to the final version of the essay, analyze your draft thoroughly before you start editing. Do you have enough supporting information? Does the text have a logical flow? Have you provided examples?
- Proofread and edit. However obvious this last step is, many students still opt to skip it having too much confidence in their essay. You might have indeed come up with a brilliant piece of writing, but some spelling errors and repetitions are bound to slip in. Don’t ruin your overall grade by stopping right before the finish line.