The toughest part of the essay, for me, was taking all the information I had gained and reduce it to a mere few pages essay. After all, quality is better than quantity. I feel that if I shortened my essay, it would be weaker because I couldn't include everything that I had researched. This would mean that much of the time I spent and the information I had gathered in my research was going to waste.
Reviewing the finished product, I realized that my shortened essay did in by half the pages did what my old one could not do in a few hundred -- it made a concise, focused argument. By focusing my essay, I was able to include only the best and most important points from my research, while discarding more extraneous ones. I learned that a research writer is like a funnel; he or she must take in a wide range of information at the beginning, and turn it into a narrow argument in the end.
An essay is more than just uniting facts from your research, it is an opportunity for you to voice your own opinion. An essay with just facts is informative, but not very interesting and get boring. It tends to lose your audience.. A strong essay is one that uses facts to support an argument based on the writer's analysis of the topic. Even though this is easier said then done.
Always keep the essay question in mind during your research. Ask yourself: "What do I need to know in order to answer the question?" Have a system of how you are going to answer that question. Find plenty of information to support your argument. Throughout your research you will surely find challenges. Do not ignore them, but think of them as an obstacle that you most conquer in order to succeed. Remember, you are trying to write the best essay, not an infallible one.
Although not everyone can write a well thought, or perfect essay, lots of reading and writing can be good in preparation for any future post-secondary education or work opportunity. Each time you...