Did you know where the word “essay” comes from? An essay is derived from the Latin word “exagium,” which is roughly translated to mean “presenting one’s case.”
No wonder then, that essay writing is one of the most effective ways to present arguments, ideas, stories, opinions etc. Broadly, essays can be classified into two types: formal essays and informal essays.
While formal essays are academic or scientific in nature and deal with serious stuff, informal essays are more personal and have elements of human sentiments, emotions and connections. Apart from this broad classification, there are types of essays.
Types of Essays:
It is important to decide about the type of essay one wants to write. The type of essay depends on the needs and requirements of the writer as well as the subject matter of the essay.
As the name suggests, a narrative essay is recommended when one wants to narrate an incident or story through an essay. Narrative essays are mostly written in the first person. While writing this type of essay, particular consideration is given to ensure that readers get the feeling as if they are part of the story as it unfolds.
In fact, narrative essays are based on the ‘show, don’t tell’ principle. Therefore, narrative essays are of necessity the most engaging essays.
These are descriptive where a writer describes a place, event, process, or personal experience. However, they are not merely plain descriptions but vivid pictures of the event that has the power to invoke readers’ senses. Thus, descriptive essays provide a taste of the actual living experience of the writer to the readers.
As the term suggests, this type of essay is primarily employed to explain a phenomena, establish a cause and effect relationship based on facts and figures. There is no place for emotions and personal biases of the writer in an expository essay.
The primary purpose of a persuasive essay is to persuade the reader to accept and believe in your side of the story or argument. It is not only about presenting facts and figures but to convince the reader to consider the opinions and arguments of the writer worth accepting.
Format of an Essay
Given that writing is a creative process, there is no single way to design and develop your essay. Nevertheless, the basic structure of the essay generally follows the following structure.
An essay should have a catchy title that gives readers a clear idea about the contents and subject matter of the essay.
Introduction is the first part of an essay which introduces the main thesis topic or the main idea of the essay. It should be written in a way that catches the readers’ attention and convinces them to read the whole essay.
This forms the major portion of your essay including all the major ideas and details. The body of an essay comprises several paragraphs. It should be logically coherent and well organized so as to save the readers from getting confused and losing interest. One way to go about it is to organize your thoughts and ideas beforehand. Also, it should be chronological in order.
A conclusion is the final part of an essay that sums up the story or argument in a way that leaves the reader convinced. Usually, a conclusion mirrors the introduction but has different words.