Creative Tips on How to Write an Introductory Paragraph of an Essay

The goal of any writing project is to create something that is compelling, provides value to the ready, and is well-written. And It all starts with the introduction, which will set the tone for the rest of a written piece and, hopefully, is effective in capturing your reader’s attention, urging them to move forward. Here are some creative tips on how to write an introductory paragraph for an essay:

Tip #1: Start with an analogy.

An analogy is simply a short story that is similar in some way to the topic you are about to discuss. What is really great about an analogy is that the story doesn’t necessarily have to be true or accurate. Analogies are great when you must explain difficult or confusing concepts or terms in a way that is familiar. Say you are writing about physics principles: before getting into the formulas or charts you would start by describing a real world situation where the physics principle occurs.

Tip #2: Provide some background info.

Background information can set up your essay by bringing in events, people, locations, others essays and more and putting them into context with your own writing. You’ll find this used in a lot of social sciences as well as history and literature. While you don’t want to focus too much of your introduction on a detailed history lesson, you can certainly make your essay better by just giving what information your reader should know in order to understand your topic.

Tip #3: Give a short description.

Similar to starting your essay with an analogy, a short description can be a great way to lull the reader into the story behind your essay. Perhaps it’s describing your walk to class on a rainy day before you go on to discuss the schools problematic transportation system. Or perhaps you can describe a water fountain full of coins representing, in some way, the hopes and dreams of poor college students longing for the future a degree promises. Whatever the description be sure to be as vivid as possible. As the old saying goes, “Show don’t tell.”

Tip #4: Use a little humor.

Humor can be a highly effective way of getting your reader’s attention, but it takes some practice. You don’t want to make any inappropriate jokes or introduce a punchline that falls flat or doesn’t make any sense at all. There’s also a time and place for humorous introductions – they particularly work well in personal essays with lighthearted themes but often fail when you’re writing about a serious social issue. Use humor sparingly.