Tutorial

THE EASY ESSAY ©
By Barry Morse

Easy Essay Writing

Introduction

In the past, writing an essay was a thing to be feared. A dreaded assignment usually put off until the last possible moment. A prayer usually accompanied an essay exam…. but why?

An essay should have a simple form used for the expression of an idea or the proof of a point. Unfortunately, until now, all the rules were too nebulous to allow the writer the freedom found in standardized form. For example, we were told that a paragraph changed when the idea changed. What if the idea of my essay was my life story? Should this then make my essay one long paragraph?

Therefore, we have developed an organized form that gives the writer the framework within which to express his or her ideas. This method shows when to start each paragraph, what goes into each paragraph, how to end the paragraph, and the order of the paragraphs. By following the form, the inclusion of extraneous material is prevented and as an eventual side benefit teaches the writer to think in a more logical manner. Yet, in spite of all the attention to form, it allows the writer the freedom to express him or herself with all the creativity in the world.

With the use of this writing style, the writer can spend his or her time on the formulation of ideas, not the formation of form.


The Basic Paragraph

A paragraph is an organized expression of a complete idea. It begins with a topic sentence. The topic sentence informs the reader as to exactly what will be discussed in the paragraph. It limits the range of the subjects. The next part or body of the paragraph proves or clarifies the topic sentence. Only statements that directly refer to the topic sentence are used in this section. The end of the paragraph is the clincher sentence. The clincher sentence is the conclusion and may restate the topic sentence as proven. All paragraphs must have a beginning, a middle and an end in the form of a topic sentence, body of proof, and a clincher sentence.


The Short Essay

To write a short essay, one simply expands the basic paragraph. This paper begins with a thesis statement. It is similar to the topic sentence in that it begins the first paragraph and all following information must be, in some way, relate to it. A thesis statement is a statement of fact. A fact is something that can be discussed. If it can’t be discussed, you can’t write about it. The thesis statement is followed by major proofs. These are used to prove or clarify the thesis statement. Then, as always, a clincher sentence is used as a conclusion for the paragraph and restating the thesis.

The next section of the essay is the body. It is similar to the body of a simple paragraph, except that it is a group of paragraphs. Combining the thesis statement with each of the major proofs forms the topic sentence of each paragraph. (A separate topic sentence and paragraph is needed for each major proof.) Following the topic sentence, in each case, are minor proofs whose purpose is to directly prove the topic sentence and indirectly prove the thesis statement. Each paragraph in the body is ended with a clincher sentence.

The paper is ended with a paragraph of conclusion. This paragraph begins with a restatement of the thesis statement and also restates the major proofs. Any conclusions that the writer has conceived are included in this paragraph. This paragraph, as with all others in this style of writing, ends with a clincher statement. In this case, the clincher restates the thesis as proven.


The Five-Paragraph Essay (in five paragraph essay form)

The five-paragraph essay is the most organized way to elaborate on any expository theme. It begins with a paragraph of introduction. It follows with three paragraphs of proofs. The essay concludes with a paragraph of conclusion. Using this device the modern writer can easily analyze, in an organized fashion, any subject he or she desires.

The five-paragraph essay begins with a paragraph of introduction. This starts with a thesis statement. A thesis statement is a statement of fact (a fact being anything which can be discussed). This is followed by three major proofs that directly assert the validity of the thesis statement. The paragraph concludes with a clincher statement, that is, one that restates the thesis as proven. All essays of this style must begin with a paragraph of introduction.

The main body of this expository style of writing contains the thesis statement combined with the major proofs. The first major proof is combined with the thesis statement to form the topic sentence of the second paragraph. Three minor proofs are used to validate this topic sentence. Again, as in all proof style paragraphs, it ends with a clincher statement. The same process is used for the other major proofs.

The final part of the essay is, logically the conclusion. This is essentially a restatement of the introductory paragraph as proven. It must contain the thesis statement, major proofs, and a clincher statement. This paragraph completes the essay.

With this tool for writing expository essays today’s author can logically analyze any subject. With the use of a paragraph of introduction, a body of proof, and a conclusion he can discuss knowledgeably almost any subject of which he has the necessary information. The use of this form provides the modern writer with a method to lambaste, lampoon, or legitimatize almost any subject under the sun.


Five Paragraph Outline

INTRODUCTION

I. Thesis statement (A thesis statement is a statement of fact. Fact=something that can be discussed.)
A. }
B. } Major proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence (thesis to be proven)
BODY
II. Topic sentence (Thesis statement plus major proof A)
A. }
B. } Major proofs of I-A
C. }
D. Clincher sentence (I-A as proven)
III. Topic sentence (Thesis statement plus major proof B)
A. }
B. } Major proofs of I-B
C. }
D. Clincher sentence (I-B as proven)
IV. Topic sentence (Thesis statement plus major proof C)
A. }
B. } Major proofs of I-C
C. }
D. Clincher sentence (I-C as proven)
CONCLUSION
V. Topic sentence-restate thesis
A. }
B. } Restate major proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence- Thesis as proven

The Simple Essay

Mickey Mouse is great. He is funny. He is smart. He is cute. That is why Mickey Mouse is great.

Mickey Mouse is great because he is funny. He tells jokes. He does funny things. He makes everyone laugh. Mickey Mouse is great because he is funny.

Mickey Mouse is great because he is smart. He says smart things. He does smart things. He has smart friends. Mickey Mouse is great because he is smart

Mickey Mouse is great because he is cute. His voice is cute. His ears are cute. He does cute things. Mickey Mouse is great because he is cute.

So, Mickey Mouse is great. He is funny. He is smart. He is cute. That is why Mickey Mouse is great.


Comparison/Contrast Essay

In a comparison or contrast essay it is most important to remember that for every point the counterpoint must be stated or there is no valid comparison. Simply state as major proofs in the paragraph of introduction both sides of the issue. Then in each paragraph of the body of the essay present a direct comparison of all aspects of the subject.


The Longer Essay

The expansion of a five-paragraph essay form into a longer essay is a simple matter. Write a basic thesis statement with three basic proofs and clincher sentence. Then form a five-paragraph essay using the basic thesis and the first basic proof of your thesis for the first section. Repeat the process for two more five-paragraph sections. End with a paragraph of conclusion that restates the opening paragraph of the essay. Remember to use transitions to tie all the parts together.

As you will see in the following outline, the longer paper can be viewed in a simplified manner, as follows:

Paragraph I- Introduction
II-VI A five-paragraph essay based on the basic thesis and the first basic proof.
VII-XI A five-paragraph essay based on the basic thesis and the second basic proof.
XII-XVI A five-paragraph essay based on the basic thesis and the third basic proof.
XVII Conclusion

Or put another way, the process is as follows: p=paragraph

5 p essay to longer essay
p2 stays p2 and is repeated as p6 (conclusion) and builds all topic sent. and clincher sent.
p3 of short essay becomes p7 and p11 (concl) of longer and builds topic sent. and clincher sent,
p4 of short essay becomes p12 and p16 (concl) of longer and builds topic sent. and clincher sent.
p5 of short essay is repeated as p17 (p1 as proven)


Remember, these outlines are only a basic guide. Fit them to your subject’s needs.


Longer Essay Outline

INTRODUCTION

I. Basic thesis statement
A. }
B. } Basic proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
BODY
II. Thesis statement 1 (Basic thesis plus basic proof I-A)
A. }
B. } Major proofs 1
C. }
D. Clincher sentence

III. Topic sentence (Thesis 1, plus major proof II-A)

A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
IV. Topic sentence (Thesis 1 plus major proof II-B)
A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
V. Topic sentence (Thesis 1 plus major proof II-C)
A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
VI. Topic sentence Thesis 1 as proven
A. }
B. } Major proofs 1
C. }
D. Clincher sentence-restate Thesis 1 as proven
VII. Thesis statement 2 (Basic thesis plus basic proof B)
A. }
B. } Major proofs 2
C. }
Clincher sentence
VIII. Topic sentence (Thesis 2 plus major proof VII-A)
A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
IX. Topic sentence (Thesis 2 plus major proof VII-B)
E. }
F. } Minor proofs
G. }
H. Clincher sentence
X. Topic sentence (Thesis 2 plus major proof VII-C)
I. }
J. } Minor proofs
K. }
L. Clincher sentence

XI. Topic sentence (restatement of Thesis 2)

A. }
B. } Major proofs 2
C. }
D. Clincher sentence-restate Thesis 2 as proven

XII. Thesis statement 3 (Basic thesis plus basic proof C)

A. }
B. } Major proofs 3
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
XIII. Topic sentence (Thesis 3 plus major proof XII-A)
A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
XIV. Topic sentence (Thesis 3 plus major proof XII-B)
A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
XV. Topic sentence (Thesis 3 plus major proof XII-C)
A. }
B. } Minor proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence
XVI. Topic sentence (restatement of Thesis 3)
A. }
B. } Major proofs 3
C. }
D. Clincher sentence restate Thesis 3 as proven
CONCLUSION

XVII. Restate Basic Thesis

A. }
B. } Basic proofs
C. }
D. Clincher sentence-Basic Thesis as proven.

Helpful Hints
  1. Have an interesting beginning and an interesting ending.
  2. Proof read - Everything!
  3. Avoid repetitiveness (vary your restatements).
  4. Order of paragraphs:
    a) People remember the last thing they heard the most, so save your best point for last. Then they remember the first point, so let that be your second best point. Your weakest proof should be in the middle, as it will be least remembered.
  5. Basically in this form:
    a) You say it
    b) You prove it
    c) You say you’ve proven it.
  6. Stick to the subject—avoid digression.
  7. Use active rather than passive tense.
  8. Each paragraph and paper must have an introduction, body, and conclusion or a beginning, middle, and end.
  9. Proof read.
  10. Transitions—be it a word, phrase, sentence or paragraph. The use of transitions makes your writing more cohesive. Sample Transitions:
    * in addition to
    * in contrast with
    * additionally
    * on the other hand
    * interestingly enough
    * to begin with
    * following this
    * secondly, thirdly etc.
    * in conclusion
    * considering this
    * taking this into account
    * allowing for this
  11. Don’t use “I” or “me” unless you have a lot of initials after your name (Ph.D., M.D.)
  12. Using the longer form takes 10-20 pages. In a book 10-20 pages is considered a chapter. Congratulations! Now you know how to write a book.
  13. In an essay exam you can take the question and invert it into a statement and use that as your thesis statement for your answer.
  14. If you are unable to complete your essay in a single sitting, place an "x" in the empty fieldss so the program can save the work you have done thus far.
  15. Save relavent notes (in MS Word or Notepad) to edit into final essay.

* The statements which constitute those proofs may be any, all, or more than the following: facts, folklore, common knowledge, common sense, logic, philosophy, expert accounts, quotations, eyewitness reports, statistics, records, historical (or biblical) accounts, religious doctrine, etc

 



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