A professional guide on how to write a personal essay
Personal essays are often assigned when applying to a school or when learning how to write different types of essays. When you need to write a personal essay, there are a few important features to include. Personal essays do have similar structure to every other essay, but there are few subtle differences in the content.
- Consider Your Audience
- Write the Introduction
- Craft the Body Paragraphs
- Finish with the Conclusion
A personal essay needs to have three parts all of which have varying length. It is important to have an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. What makes the essay “personal” rather than persuasive or informative is what you include in those three parts. Before you set out to write the essay, you need to decide exactly what the focus of your essay will be. You do not want to write about your entire life history, because your readers will not want to read about your entire life history. This means that you will need to find something interesting and worth sharing that you think your readers will enjoy reading.
When you write your introduction, you will want to begin with a hook that will get the reader’s attention. There are several techniques that you can use to get the reader’s attention, like using a quote from a famous person, beginning with an anecdote, or asking rhetorical questions. Once you have established the introduction, you will want to move into a bridge then into the claim that you will prove with your personal essay. The claim that you provide will be shown by what you have learned through the experiences shared in the rest of the essay.
The body paragraphs will be the part of the essay that contain the personal experiences. These body paragraphs should include topic sentences and then the events that you want to share. The events should be told in a way that get the reader’s attention and keep the reader wanting to know more. Most personal essays should include at least three body paragraphs.
The final part of the essay is the conclusion. This is where you will restate the claim that you made at the beginning of the essay. When you write the conclusion, you should restate some of the most poignant experiences that helped you come to the realization and helped you grow as a person. Then you share the ultimate realization at the very end, and possibly even offer a suggestion for the reader to learn from, too.