Writing English Essays

English essays are organized and contain analytical discussions and interpretations of a work of literature in the English language. English essay writing has many approaches, but most of them start with close and active reading plus responding to and thinking about the text you are working on. The reader of the text and the essay writer should ask and try to answer questions about what the word means, and how the author’s choices affect the actual meaning. If you are still not sure, here is a guide that will help with English essay writing.

English essays are built around what the essay writer thinks about the texts. The most important support and evidence in your essay should come from the text itself since they are not research essays and do not require the use of secondary sources. The following approaches to the study of literature can help with English essay writing.

  • Considering the work in relation to its background or with regard to its author or its original readers.
  • Thinking about reflecting on the themes in the work.
  • Considering how the work is created and how it creates the effect.
  • Reading from a particular theoretical perspective.
  • Examining the work in timer so it fits the genre.

What are the Formal Elements of Literary Work?

Most English essays analyze how the formal elements of a literary piece work together to create meaning. The formal elements refer to the various techniques and tools writers have at their disposal. Therefore, essay writers should pay attention to the ways authors can arrange and pattern words and their medium to create effect.

Considering the Theme

When an essay focuses on the themes of the literary work, it focuses on the central ideas that the work seems to be considering. Any piece of literature is about ideas of the real world, and it not only entertains but also conveys something meaningful and important about the central ideas through its plot, story, formal elements, and characterization. These ideas may be love, friendship, duty, justice, death, God, right and wrong, etc. The work may also be thematically concerned with social, religious, political, and psychological concerns of a particular place and time.

Considering the Theme

Most English essays aim to uncover and clarify the major themes in a text and what the writer says about them. When you write about a literary work, you may study it for the theme. But you should also look at how the work’s themes are being expressed and conveyed with the tools unique to literature, the particular literary genre, and the formal elements.

Remember that in any literary work, the words are chosen and arranged to make meaning, and create effect by making you feel, think, and interpret. The best essays will not forget that the characters, plot, and setting do not really exist but have been created by the writer by using words arranged in certain ways and using tools to create effect and express meaning.

Final Take

When writing an English essay, you must be aware of what you are doing and what the assigned topic is asking you to do. If your primary focus is on the formal elements or their theme, your source will only be the work from which you gain insights and write an essay that fulfills the aim.

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