How to write an introductory paragraph of an essay – a guideline on mastering the art of the first paragraph writing.
Essay Writing: First Sentence and Introductory Paragraph
Writing an introductory paragraph of an essay is a bit like writing a sales pitch. It’s interesting to read books on copywriting and books on essay writing because of both talk about that all-important first sentence.
In the book, The Adweek Copywriting Handbook, by the one of the all-time greatly revered copywriters, Joseph Sugarman, he has written a whole chapter on the powerful first sentence that you can use when you are thinking about how to write an introductory paragraph of an essay.
In this chapter Joe Sugarman says: “Now if your first sentence is so important, what can you do to make it so compelling to read, so simple, and so interesting that your readers – every one of them – will read it in its entirety? The answer is: Make it short”.
Your introductory paragraph is all about engaging the reader and writing it in a way that they want to read more. Joe then goes on to say: “The sole purpose of the first sentence in an advertisement is to get you to read the second sentence” So we all get the gist of what the great Joe Sugarman is saying here, make it interesting, make your sentences shorter so your reader wants to read more of your essay.
Persuasive Process Technique for Writing an Introductory Paragraph
Writing an introductory paragraph of an essay you need to use a technique called the persuasive process. The art of writing a great essay, and for that matter any piece of writing, is to persuade your readers you have all the facts, figures, statistics and information you need to show them how clever you are and why in some situations you are making this stand.
Your second sentence is where you begin to build momentum with your reader, where you get to give them a taste of exactly what stand you are about to make. Open your sentences up with simple, short and sweet statements such as this essay will consider, or this essay will examine or this essay will discuss so the reader is immediately drawn into the what you are about to say.
Your third sentence builds on this momentum and this is where you want to gain the reader’s trust and confidence so you should really show off a little. Persuasion soon lends its hand to convincing so with the third sentence you need think about what you can say (once again keep it short and sweet) to convince your reader that the body of your essay will support what you have to say in your introductory paragraph.
Your fourth and fifth sentence is the closing statement segments of your introductory paragraph. How to write an introductory paragraph of an essay is opening up and then summing it up so your reader is clear on what side of the fence you are on. You can finish sentence five off by making statements such as in summary or overall the argument in this essay will … and then your reader is left up to know to guess at all what you are going to write about on this particular topic.
Read also: Five Paragraph Essay
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