Essay Writing Hacks

December 12, 2016

Time Management Hacks

Effective time management is crucial when it comes to essay writing. With proper planning and organization, you can ensure that you make the most of your time and produce high-quality work. One useful hack is to create a schedule or timetable specifically dedicated to your essay writing tasks. Break down the process into manageable chunks, setting aside specific time slots for researching, outlining, drafting, revising, and proofreading. By allocating time for each stage, you can stay focused and avoid procrastination. It’s also helpful to eliminate distractions during dedicated writing sessions by turning off notifications or finding a quiet workspace. Additionally, consider using productivity tools or techniques like the Pomodoro Technique to enhance your efficiency. By implementing these time management hacks, you can maximize your productivity and produce well-crafted essays within deadlines.

Research and Organization Hacks

Research and organization are key components of successful essay writing. These hacks can help you optimize your research and use your findings to create a well-structured cohesive essay:

  1. Start with a brainstorming session to map out your ideas and identify your main argument.
  2. Take advantage of online databases, libraries and other resources to gather research materials.
  3. Use note-taking techniques such as bullet points or mind maps to organize your research and keep track of references.
  4. Categorize your research into subtopics or themes, which will help you see where there are gaps or overlaps in your research.
  5. Use headings or subheadings to organize your essay structure, which will ensure your argument flows logically.
  6. Draft an outline to document each of your key sections, which will help you stay on topic and within word limits.
  7. As you write, refer to your research notes and aim to include evidence to support your argument.
  8. Use effective referencing tools like citation generators to ensure you cite your sources correctly and avoid plagiarism.

By using these research and organization hacks, you’ll have all the information and structure you need to craft a compelling and coherent essay.

Overcoming Writer’s Block

Writer’s block can be a frustrating obstacle when trying to write an essay. To overcome this challenge, consider the following hacks:

  1. Take a break: Step away from your writing and engage in a different activity. This change in scenery can refresh your mind and spark new ideas.
  2. Freewriting: Start writing without worrying about grammar or structure. Just let your thoughts flow onto the page. This can help break through mental blocks and generate new ideas.
  3. Mind mapping: Use a visual tool like a mind map to brainstorm and organize your thoughts. Start with a central concept and branch out to explore related ideas and arguments.
  4. Change your environment: Sometimes a change in location can stimulate creativity. Try writing in a different place like a café, library, or park.
  5. Seek inspiration: Read books, articles, or essays related to your topic to gain new insights and inspiration for your own writing.
  6. Set attainable goals: Break your essay into manageable chunks and set small, achievable goals. Celebrating each milestone can boost motivation and help you overcome writer’s block.
  7. Talk it out: Discuss your ideas with friends, classmates, or professors. Verbalizing your thoughts can provide clarity and generate new perspectives.
  8. Write without editing: Give yourself permission to write a terrible first draft. Focus on getting your ideas down without worrying about perfection.

By implementing these hacks, you can overcome writer’s block and find yourself back on track to completing your essay.

Drafting and Revising Hacks

Drafting and revising are fundamental steps when writing an essay. Here are some hacks to help you make the most of these stages:


  1. Start with the body: Focus on developing your argument and main points. The introduction and conclusion can be drafted later.
  2. Avoid perfectionism: Keep in mind that your first draft is not supposed to be perfect. Focus on getting your ideas down onto paper.
  3. Cut the clutter: Eliminate unnecessary phrases and sentences, which can distract from your main argument.
  4. Use active voice: Write in the present tense using active voice. This can make your writing sound more direct, concise, and engaging.


  1. Take a break: Allow time to distance yourself from your writing. This can help you see the essay with a fresh perspective.
  2. Get feedback: Seek external feedback from friends, family, or peer review groups. Their insights can help you identify areas to improve.
  3. Check for coherence: Ensure there is a clear connection between each section of your essay and that your argument flows logically.
  4. Edit for grammar and punctuation: Use grammar checkers and style guides to double-check your writing for accuracy.

By using these drafting and revising hacks, you’ll be able to produce a well-developed, coherent essay that is clear and concise.

Enhancing your writing skills

Enhancing your writing skills is crucial for creating high-quality essays. Here are some effective hacks to improve your writing prowess:

  1. Read widely: Expand your reading to various genres and styles to expose yourself to different writing techniques and styles. This helps you develop a strong command of language and enhances your vocabulary.
  2. Practice freewriting: Set aside time for regular freewriting sessions. This exercise allows you to write without constraints, fostering creativity and improving your ability to express your thoughts fluidly.
  3. Study grammar and punctuation: Brush up on grammar rules and punctuation marks to ensure your writing is clear and error-free. Refer to grammar guides or online resources to enhance your understanding.
  4. Use active voice and varied sentence structures: Opt for active voice as it adds clarity and dynamism to your writing. Additionally, vary your sentence structures—mix simple, compound, and complex sentences—to create a rhythm and engage your readers.
  5. Utilize descriptive language: Work on enhancing your descriptive writing skills by incorporating sensory details, vivid imagery, and figurative language. This brings your essays to life and engages your readers on a deeper level.
  6. Edit and revise: Always take the time to edit and revise your essays. This allows you to refine your ideas, eliminate unnecessary words, improve sentence structure, and ensure coherence throughout your work.

By incorporating these writing hacks into your routine, you’ll gradually improve your writing skills and produce more compelling and impactful essays.

Utilizing Technology for Efficient Essay Writing

Technology has made essay writing more convenient and efficient. Here are some hacks that can help you utilize technology for a productive writing session:

  1. Use online tools: Make use of online research tools like Google Scholar, online databases, and academic search engines to discover reliable sources quickly.
  2. Take advantage of apps: Use writing apps like Grammarly and Hemingway Editor to improve your writing, avoid grammar and spelling errors, and refine your writing style.
  3. Organize your research: Utilize note-taking applications like Evernote or OneNote to organize research materials and create digital notebooks that you can easily search and access.
  4. Leverage productivity tools: Use productivity tools like Trello for task organization or Pomodoro technique apps for time management and increased focus.
  5. Back up your work: Avoid losing your work due to device disruptions or crashes. Use cloud-based storage platforms like Google Drive, Dropbox, or iCloud to store your documents and always have access to them.
  6. Collaborate efficiently: Use collaborative writing tools like Google Docs to share your documents with others, allow for real-time collaborative editing, and track changes in the document.
  7. Use citation tools: Use citation software like Zotero or Mendeley for efficient citation management, allowing you to easily create accurate bibliographies and citations.

By utilizing these technology hacks, you can streamline your work and be more productive during your essay writing sessions.

Editing and Proofreading Hacks

Editing and proofreading are critical steps when writing an essay. Here are some effective hacks to help you refine and polish your work:

  1. Take a break: Allow yourself time to distance yourself from your essay, then come back with a fresh perspective. This will help you catch previously missed errors and improve the flow of your writing.
  2. Read out loud: Reading your essay out loud can help you hear the errors or awkward phrasings in your writing. You can also listen to natural flow and rhythm in your essay.
  3. Seek a second opinion: Ask a peer, family member, or professional editor to review your work. External feedback helps point out errors and provides suggestions for improvement.
  4. Use grammar and spell-checking software: Utilize software like Grammarly or Spellcheckplus to scan your essay for spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors. Pay attention to the suggestions the software offers and make judgments about each suggestion.
  5. Keep word choice simple: Avoid using cumbersome language in your essay. Long sentences, vague or repetitive phrases, or jargon should be eliminated wherever possible.
  6. Check formatting and citations: Ensure that your essay follows the appropriate formatting style required for your assignment and that your citations are accurate and valid.

By following these editing and proofreading hacks, you can make sure your essay is error-free and refined, ensuring your readers have a positive and engaging experience.

Citations and Referencing Hacks

Citations and referencing are crucial aspects of essay writing, as they give credit to the original sources of information and lend credibility to your work. Here are some hacks to help you master citations and referencing:

  1. Understand the citation style: Familiarize yourself with the specific citation style required for your essay, such as APA, MLA, or Chicago style. Refer to style guides or online resources to understand the formatting requirements for in-text citations and reference lists.
  2. Use citation generators: Take advantage of citation generators like EasyBib, BibMe, or Citationsy. These tools can generate accurate citations by simply inputting the necessary information about the source.
  3. Double-check your sources: Ensure that the sources you use are reliable and credible. Verify the author’s credentials, publication date, and the reputation of the publishing platform or journal.
  4. Keep a record of sources: Maintain a bibliography or reference list throughout your research process. This will save you time later when you have to compile the final reference list for your essay.
  5. Use reference management software: Consider utilizing reference management tools like EndNote, Mendeley, or Zotero. These tools help you organize your sources, create citations, and automatically generate reference lists according to the preferred citation style.
  6. Follow the correct citation format: Be consistent in your citation style throughout your essay. Pay attention to details such as capitalization, italics, and punctuation while formatting the citations.

By following these citation and referencing hacks, you can ensure that your essay is properly cited, avoiding plagiarism and demonstrating your academic integrity.

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