Prewriting Stage of Writing an Essay
Prewriting is the process you use to develop and organize your ideas before you start writing.
Your first step in developing a topic for an essay is deciding
what kind of essay or research paper you want to write.
Creating a thesis statement, which states your point of view on this topic is the next step in prewriting. If you are writing an argumentative essay, a compare-and-contrast essay, or any other type of analytical write my essay that requires evaluating two sides of an issue and building evidence to support your position, you will also make a list of reasons why readers should agree with your viewpoint and perhaps even make some notes about what kind of evidence might be useful in supporting those reasons. For more information about developing a thesis statement that will support your argument, see the Writing an Argumentative Essay handout on pages 8-9 of this booklet.
In this stage of writing, you also need to consider how you are going to structure and write my paper after it is complete. This process can be extremely helpful in clarifying your thinking about the topic you're choosing and the points or ideas you want to include in your essay. What are the main points? How do they relate to each other as well as to the overall purpose or aim of your essay? Where should each point go and what connections between these points will make them cohere into one coherent piece of writing? Organization often involves breaking down material into smaller, manageable pieces.
In the prewriting stage, you also need to consider how other people might view your essay if it were published in a newspaper or magazine or read aloud on television or radio. In some cases, for example, readers will want to know right away why they should care about the topic an essay writer is writing about; in other cases, they will want to know first what research you have done so that they can judge whether your evidence is adequate and reliable. Finally, because essays often develop from notes taken during lectures or discussions with others who share an interest in a particular subject, be sure to jot down the general categories of things you think would make useful points in your essay as well as specific ideas and facts that seem especially significant or that you especially want to include. In this way, you will be able to brainstorm before starting the actual writing process.
Suppose your instructor tells the class that he or she is going to give a quiz on an assigned reading and mentions in passing that homework would be due tomorrow had it not been canceled because so many students are still recovering from last weekend's flu epidemic. You might jot down some ideas about how parents could have more say in what their children learn, whether schools should postpone classes when there are widespread illnesses among students, and whether technology can be used to keep track of student attendance without requiring teachers to monitor every child during every class all day long or seek an online essay writing service. Another person taking notes might decide instead that parents and teachers don't need more authority, especially if it leads to endless paperwork and bickering between the two. Perhaps parents should take more responsibility for monitoring their own children's health and getting them back on track when they become ill, or perhaps schools shouldn't have a policy that penalizes students who miss classes because of illness.
A third person taking notes might decide that there are two important reasons why schools should consider "contagious conditions" in deciding whether to excuse absences from class work. First, one way to keep disease from spreading is to prevent people who are sick from being around other people; second, some students tend to be absent more often than others, which can disadvantage classmates in large classes where only a few students get close attention from the teacher and other students get less help.
By considering all sides of an issue or by looking at things from multiple angles, you will be better able to choose among different points of view and organize your essay in a way that is logical, persuasive, and compelling to readers. For more information about organizing your essay while writing it get a paper writing service help, see the Writing an Essay handout on pages 8-9 of this booklet.
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