after in order that
as provided that
as if rather than
as long as since
as much as so that
as soon as than
as though that
by the time whatever
even if when
even though where
if only whether
4 Colors - 4 Types of Sentences
The Essay Writing Process
Preparing to Write
Write notes and ideas a few words at a time in a long column down the page.
⦁ Do not write complete sentences
⦁ Do not worry about spelling
⦁ Look at your notes and try to think of more ideas
⦁ Do not limit yourself
⦁ Now, group like ideas together by numbering each one with a 1,2, or 3, etc. if you do not have enough notes for 3 different main ideas, then you need to think more and write more notes.
⦁ After numbering each note with a number, put them in the order you wish to write them by adding letters to your numbers, e.g.
⦁ If you do not have at least 3 points under at least 3 ideas, (see 2A above – there is no 2C) you need to add more notes.
⦁ If you cannot add notes, cross off 2A and 2B and leave that idea out of your paper. Use the other notes to write 3 paragraphs.
⦁ Look once more at your notes to determine if you need to add, subtract, or change anything. 60-80% of your time in writing should be spent preparing your outline.
Writing the Essay
Look at 1A and develop a well written sentence from your notes. Continue developing sentences from each note. Begin each sentence with a different word (no two sentences should begin with the same word). Be sure to write a variety of sentence types: simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex. Use good transition words such as: therefore, next, meanwhile, etc. All of the #1 notes should be developed into one paragraph. Then the #2 notes into the second paragraph, etc. You need 3 paragraphs as a minimum for any essay. This way when you add an opening and closing paragraph, you have a 5 paragraph essay. Add an opening sentence to this paragraph, being careful to make a general statement which introduces the reader to what the paragraph talks about. Next, add a closing sentence, which is very general (no details, facts, figures, dates, etc.), adding a little emotion to the ideas previously stated in the paragraph. Make it a strong conclusion that makes the paragraph seem complete.
Write every paragraph in the same way, using the numbered notes as a guide. Each paragraph should have at least five sentences, every one reflecting variety in structure, length, and wording. I addition, be sure one idea leads ito the next paragraph. This can be done with wording or transitions. Add a very broad opening and general closing sentence to this paragraph. In order to be sure you are on theme, write down the main idea of each paragraph in the margin.
Now, add an opening paragraph of five sentences or more. First, write one sentence mentioning the content of the first paragraph. Next, write a sentence for each following paragraph in the order written, capturing the main idea of each of the paragraphs. Refer back to your list of main ideas to see if you are still on theme. Finally, write sentences summing up each paragraph in the order they were written (one sentence per paragraph). Try to give a sense of closure to these sentences. Lastly, add an opening and closing sentence to this final paragraph. Your closing sentence of the entire essay should have a sense of finality. I you do not have an idea, try to start this final sentence with “How” or “What”.
Be sure to begin at least 2 sentences with a word ending in –ly (e.g. Surprisingly, he did not ask for money). This gives a smooth flow to the reading. Vary your sentences, so that some begin with a participle phrase (e.g. Singing while she skipped ...) Check to see that you have a variety of sentence types in each paragraph (simple, complex, compound, compound-complex). Also, check to see that NO 2 sentences begin with the same word. To check this, write down the first word of every single sentence and count how many times you used that word.
Proofread your own work. First, read it aloud to yourself, checking for errors in wording, spelling, punctuation, citations, and the overall flow and meaning of each sentence. Next, check your font size, margins, and page layout. Congratulations! You are finished!