6 Literary Essay Writing Mistakes You Should Avoid
There are two kinds of students on this planet. The first kind has already checked the guidelines and started researching for their upcoming college essay. On the other hand, the second group tends to push most assignments until the night before the deadline.
If this blog has caught your attention, chances are you belong to the latter category of students. You tremble and whine at the idea of researching and gathering references, writing the essay, and proofreading the content.
Ultimately, you struggle to finish the assignment and end up with an average essay, knowing you could’ve done better if you had more time. This doesn’t just affect your academic performance and grades. It takes a toll on your learning and overall understanding of the subject.
In this blog, we’ll discuss a few literary essay writing mistakes that most students make. We’ll also suggest ways to avoid these mistakes. Let’s get started.
Irrespective of the type of essay you’re writing, one of the worst mistakes you can make is not checking the guidelines. This is because the guidelines contain various important clues on what your professor expects from the essay. Also, it includes vital information about the essay structure and bibliography format.
If you’ve developed the habit of not checking the essay guidelines, chances are it’s happening because you start working on the assignment too close to the deadline. That’s why the first step is to stop procrastinating and go through the instruction as soon as you receive the assignment from your professor.
Carefully read and re-read the question to understand the requirements. Check other instructions, including the word count, due date, format, mode of submission, etc.
This is one of the most common mistakes students make while writing literary essays. It’s essential to understand that your professor isn’t looking for a synopsis of the original work of literature. You don’t have to summarize what’s happening in the novel/story/poem.
Instead, you should share your unique analysis and insights about the literary work. Dig deeper into the themes it deals with and the impact it’s had on several generations. Of course, you can include some references from the original literature to make it easier for your readers to relate to the topic.
The last thing you want is to flood your essay with too many quotes from the original text. While there’s no harm in adding a quote here and there to support your argument/thesis statement, you shouldn’t overdo it. Otherwise, your writing will come across as half-baked and hasty.
This also applies to any quotes you use from the reference materials you’ve collected. As a ground rule, you should add quotes to improve the quality of your content and not to increase its length.
You can’t write a compelling college essay without defining a strong and unique thesis statement. This is even more crucial when you’re writing an essay on a work of literature. In the absence of a thesis statement, you’ll end up rephrasing or summarizing the original text.
That’s why it is crucial to outline your thesis statement after you’ve read the instructions. Think of its as your own argument or take on the given topic. Don’t be afraid to go against convention and present a less widely accepted argument. The key is to showcase your understanding and analysis of the subject.
Also, it’s important to include the thesis statement in the right section of the essay. It’s a good idea to add it toward the end of the introduction to set the tone for the essay and let readers know what they should expect.
In the era of the internet, you’ve access to any information at your fingertips. But not all the information you find is going to be accurate and credible. The last thing you want is to include arguments and references from unverified or suspicious sources.
That’s why you should carefully vet the authors/editors of any essays, lectures, research papers, etc. you use as references for your essay. Make sure you use references from renowned and trusted authors only.
Alternatively, you should our site to connect with experienced online tutors who will help you gather verified and trusted references. You could also join student forums and Facebook groups to connect with other literature and arts students who can provide you with useful references for your essay.
The conclusion is often the most neglected section of literary essays. Students make the mistake of reiterating or rewriting the introduction to wrap up the content. But if you want to make a strong impact on the reader, you should write a thought-provoking conclusion.
Start by summarizing your opinions, arguments, and analyses of the subject. Also, includes questions and insights that’ll force readers to contemplate. It’s a good idea to end the essay with a powerful and relevant quote from the original essay.
Do you have any other tips for writing a literary essay? Share your suggestions in the comments section below.