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Get in The Right Frame of Mind for Essay Writing

stainluss 2 / 1  
Jun 6, 2010   #1
I am doing my finals next week and I have been practising personal essays. We must write one from a given title on the day.

I have been told that my discursive personal essays in the past have been good. (anecdotes, philisophical material about youth etc.) This is when I am in the right mood (Relaxed, and thinking the right way to be philisophoical)

But when I am under pressure I can never be this good (I write utter garbage :( )

I know I am going to feel under pressure during an exam, so how would I try to get in this creative, personal-essay frame of mind in that environment? Any tips?

Azeri 10 / 137  
Jun 6, 2010   #2
Hi, Stainluss.

Actually, there aren't clear tips, as a lot depends on an individual's character, psychology and mood.
Just try to summon your strenght, exploit all abilities, collect your thoughts and remember that this would be the final exam, the final step that you should take to finish the year. Come earlier to an exam, talk to your friends, do everything to allay worries just before the exam, but concentrate on the task when the exam starts. If you are good in writing, if you have certain techniques, they will come to your help regardless the pressure you will experience.

Best of luck!
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jun 7, 2010   #3
Hi Azeri, nice to see you again!
Stainlus, this is a good question... Azeri seems to be answering from experience. Good advice...

I think there are 2 methods to use:
Get Inspired
Be Mechanical.

That philosophical mood you described seems like the inspired method, but if you are not inspired, do this...
Mechanical Method
1.) Think of your simple, one sentence answer to their question. Come up with something great. Turn that sentence into the thesis. Write an intro paragraph that ends with that thesis statement.

2.) Think of 3 supporting sentences that support your thesis. Use those as the topic sentences for paragraphs 2,3, and 4. (Google "topic sentence" to learn all about it)

3.) Turn each topic sentence into a full paragraph by adding a sentence with an explanation, a sentence with an example, and a thoughtful sentence about the significance of what you are saying in this paragraph. ONE PARAGRAPH = ONE IDEA

4.) Write a conclusion paragraph that says the same thing as the intro paragraph, but add "something extra." (the same big idea is expressed in the intro and conclusion. ONE ESSAY = ONE BIG IDEA

Try this method now to answer my sample question:
Culture is beautiful, but it is also evil, because culture makes us see others as "different" an we sometimes even go to war over culture. Do you agree or disagree? Discuss.

(remember, step one is to dig deep and find your real answer. Express your response beautifully in a single sentence as you begin to write, but put that sentence at the END of the into paragraph.

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