A Comprehensive Guide on Writing Personal Essays
The two main modes of writing are narrative and descriptive. If you are looking forward to writing a personal essay, you need to be adept at both these criteria. However, these aspects come later. What you need to know firsthand is the personal essay format, personal essay outline, and how to write a personal essay. It’s a good thing that you have arrived at the right place, at the right time as we’ll discuss these aspects in detail here.
Let us check out the aspects one by one.
What Is The Most Accurate Personal Essay Format?
Before we start discussing on how to write a personal essay, we should take a look at the most accurate personal essay format.
Similar to any type of essay, college personal essay follows the same format:
- Introduction: You have to start your essay with a brief overview of the topic. Here you can highlight the main goal of the story, express your outlook and describe the results that the teachers can expect. Provide a catchy thesis statement to end your introduction on a strong note. If you check personal essay samples, you will have a detailed insight.
- Main Body: In this section, you have to discuss the issues you wish to touch upon. However, be careful with the word count and try not to exceed it. Apart from losing marks, you will end up with boring content. You can segregate your issues in 3-5 paragraphs and start every paragraph with the topic sentence. The body constitutes the bulk of the personal essay outline.
- Conclusion: You must close your essay with a summary of the aspects you have discussed throughout the content. The conclusion is the final segment of the personal essay format
Now that we have a clear idea of the personal essay outline, we can proceed to the next step, i.e., learn how to write the essay.
How to Write a Personal Essay from Scratch?
If you wish to write compelling content, you need to pay close attention to this section. We'll take a look at the aspects that you must include in the essay without fail. We'll take it from the top so that you have an idea of how to start writing a personal essay.
- Make Your Opening Sentence Alluring
You need to set the stage by beginning with an engaging sentence. It can be a joke, statistic, etc. that will draw the attention of the teacher. The theme should be intriguing, something that arouses inner conflict and leads to a change in your personality.
- Incorporate Background Details in The Introduction
The introduction should be meaningful, and you should provide a brief description of the subject matter you wish to describe. Do not forget to mention the thesis statement. For instance, if you want to write about the demise of your grandmother, you need to introduce your grandmother in the introduction. You can highlight certain things that made you learn something from the incident.
If you have been wondering, “How to start a personal essay?” You should have some idea now. Now, we’ll move on to the main body of the essay.
- Convey your Personal Opinion Throughout The Body
If you want your personal essay to be successful, it has to be distinct, and that happens only when you include your unique writing voice. Do not copy-paste the ideas found in the samples. Work on your writing style and include good vocabulary. The tone of the content, the choice of words altogether determine the quality of the essay.
- Make Your Characters Lively In The Essay
To make your essay stand out from the rest of the class, you need to spend time on character development. The characters involved in your essay should be realistic and associated with your experience. You should consider storytelling elements like ‘plot’ to complement your real-life experience. For instance, you are narrating an incident “The first time I purchased a guitar”. Here you can mention who accompanied you, how was the storekeeper and etc.
- Get To the Bottom of the Essay
If you wish to make your essay more relatable, then discuss your experiences with honesty and by instilling a sense of curiosity in the minds of the teachers. Often an experience might be similar; you then have to figure out a way to make it different.
- Use Different Literary Devices
You can experiment with different literary devices like metaphors, personifications, etc. to check which is the best suited for your personal essay content.
- Round it Up With Proper Conclusion
The conclusion shouldn’t be too long. Your task is to round up the content in two to three sentences highlighting the key points of the essay.
If you didn’t know how to write a personal essay, you now have a comprehensive guide in front of you.
How To Make Personal Essays Effective?
Now that you have an idea of the personal essay format, and how to write it from scratch, we’ll now analyze the ways to make it more effective. Let us delve right into it.
- Choose an Interesting Topic
You will find that success in writing a personal essay lies in the choice of the topic. Your content should be modern, meaningful and engaging. Only then your prospect of scoring good grades in the assignment increases.
- Incorporate Sensory Detail
While writing, focus on the details and describe the situation rather than mentioning it. Utilize a variety of senses to compel the readers (teachers) further into the essay. You should use strong verbs instead of over-relying on adjectives.
- Presence of a Moral
The personal essay should provide a particular lesson to the readers (teachers). Highlight how the event affected your personality. Moreover, the essay should stick to the central theme (thesis statement) all the time.
If you incorporate these aspects into your personal essay, you will find that the quality of the assignment has increased manifolds. Furthermore, the presentation of the content will also improve.
A Personal Essay Example to Clear All Your Doubts
Now that you have an idea of how to write a personal essay, let us take a look at an example. Everything seems manageable in theory, but once you start putting pen to paper, problems start cropping up. You can use this example as a reference every time you sit down to write the essay.
Let us assume the topic is “My Guitar Journey."
Ever since I was a little boy, I had always been interested in music. However, I would not take it seriously until I was in high school. In the last few years, I have realized that all I wanted to do was compose music that would leave people astounded. This intuitive notion solidified while I used to watch videos of the stalwarts mesmerizing the audience with their stage presence and guitar prowess. I knew what I wanted to become- a Guitarist!
My father had always been fond of blues and jazz. Although I didn't know how to play the guitar at that time, I would instantly start humming to the tune. I presume that this aspect over the years inculcated a sense of melody in me, even though I didn't have formal training in music. I vaguely remember my mother unsuccessfully trying to impart piano lessons. Unfortunately, that would not continue for long.
Throughout middle school, I remained engrossed in the academic curriculum. There were two to three instances when I had participated in singing competitions, but nothing significant. It was in high school that I came across a few seniors playing the guitar. I was intrigued by the look of the instrument rather than what they were playing. I approached them and asked them for a lesson, and they happily agreed to provide. Even today, I remain grateful to them. Had they not been by my side during the initial year, I would not have made much progress.
Soon, I started taking lessons. Although I started late, I was on par with the rest of the students by the end of high school. Now I am a freshman, and I have decided to take my guitar playing to the next level. I have formed a band, and we practice daily to hone our skills.
The journey will continue, and I will always be on the lookout to embrace new challenges. However, without my parents and guitar instructors, I wouldn't have been at the place I am today. More importantly, what I learned was ‘It’s Never Too Late To Start’.
This is just a brief example to help you clarify the format of the essay. Here you will get an idea of the presentation of the entire content. There are several personal essays prompts available if you wish to enhance the quality of writing. You need to practice before coming up with your essay topic.
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