To get yourself thinking clearly about what you’re going to be writing, see if you can sum up what your argument is going to be in a single sentence – a bit like an ‘elevator pitch’.
If you can’t do this, the chances are that you don’t quite know what you want to say, with the result that you may end up waffling in your essay, thereby wasting valuable time.
If it helps, underline key instructional words in the title, such as “compare” or “analyse”.
This forces your mind to focus on the right kind of task, so you write the essay with this in mind.
Perhaps surprisingly, the introduction and conclusion of an essay are often the hardest bits to write. By the time you’ve written the body of the essay, the task of writing the introduction and a summarising conclusion should be much easier, as you’ll already have spent plenty of time on your argument and you’ll be very familiar with it.
If you’re required to add references and a bibliography to your essay, do these as you go along to save time.
Before you start writing, it’s crucial to get yourself into the right mindset.
You may be experiencing feelings of panic, feeling as though you don’t have enough time and you can’t do it. To be successful, however, you will need to banish these negative feelings.
Most young people these days type faster than they write by hand, so unless you’ve been told that you must handwrite your essay, type it.
This will make it much easier to edit what you’ve written and change things around, and you’ll be able to get more words in through typing quickly.