Writing an Essay or Assignment for school, or even a university assignment*.
Here are 12 suggested steps to follow:
“Writing” - If it is a word-processed assignment, then you are lucky. You can draft, then cut/copy/paste. Not such a luxury with written assignments. You will probably have to do several re-writes!
Allow time to prepare for either!
Don’t try to write the essay all at once. It becomes too obvious, and you will miss out details (and marks).
Start planning and writing your essay early. Don’t rush it, unless you have a short time-frame. BUT never leave it to the last minute! A rushed essay/assignment stands out to the assessor/teacher like a tower on a desert! ie: Very obvious!
1/. Read and re-read the assignment task. Highlight the main points. Make a careful note of the word count/or page count. The general concept is "over" is better than "under" the count!
2/. Do your research, which will form the main body of the essay.
3/. Make dot points of the main points to be included, then sort them into the order of the “story” structure.
4/. Then plan your actual essay by creating a basic planning outline.
Plan what is going into your first (lead in) paragraph. But do not yet write it.
Plan what supportive information you are going to put in the “body” paragraphs.
(This is where you state the facts/present our argument/s about the researched content).
5/. Write the body paragraphs first. These are the main parts containing the substance of your story Integrate your story “evidence” carefully.
6/. Write your conclusion, then re-read what you have written.
7/. If you are then “happy to go with it”.
8/. Then go back and write your first paragraph, realising this is the “attention grabber” – the headline of your story. The one that creates the interest - to read on!
9/. (If time allows and it should, with good planning!), put your essay aside. Go for a walk, play with the dog/s, leave it a day or so. Then get back to it refreshed.
10/. Re-read what you have done, finish it off in a final draft format.
11/. Do a spell check, as well as a grammar and punctuation check.
12/. If you are then happy with it, then finally publish it.
a/. Throughout the whole process, think about grammar, punctuation and spelling/typos.
b/. If it is a written essay and not word processed – then allow more time, for a re-write, as opposed to a word-processed easier to do edit.
Enjoy your “story writing", treat it more as a leisure activity and a challenge to express your ideas and not a chore!
*University assignments also require referencing (are not included in this particular article).
University referencing depends on which university and what system they use. However most (not all) universities in Australia the Harvard System.