Education

Steps to Write an Interpretive Essay

In this interpretive writing guide, we are going to discover the magnificent world of crafting the A-grade interpretive essay. This is a fully different type of writing assignment that takes a bit of practice, a bit of understanding, and… some tips and tricks. No wonder that some beginner writers apply to professional writing help, to handle this uneasy type of writing. We wish to undertake a journey in that area to find out how to become better interpretive essay writers.

What, Exactly, Is That Animal?

The interpretive essay, we mean. Well, here you interpret some piece of literature. It can be a book, a poem, or an essay, etc. It doesn’t have to be about every element that is hidden in that literary piece. No, here you focus on specific ways you reason on the meaning of the, say, book. It can be given as an assignment for scholarship writing or simply as a way to round up your grade. No matter the reason, you can encounter some difficulties. So, let’s see the main essay writing tips.

The Thesis

The thesis presents an a-couple-of-sentence-long summary of your viewpoint on the main topic you’re going to discuss. You are going to need to provide valid reasons in support of it. When we are talking about an interpretive essay, in the thesis you need to briefly touch on what are you interpreting. Point out some supporting points that you’re going to discuss further.

Balance

Here we are talking about the body of the essay. There needs to be a balance there. Not only there, though, but this is the main part we are going to talk about this. What, for the sake of all interpretive essays, are we talking about.

First, start with a short introduction to what you’re discussing below. Then, jot down several body paragraphs (or however many you need) that consist of similar lengths. Finally, wrap it all up with a short conclusion where you tie all ends.

The reason we started with mentioning the body of the essay in this paragraph is the following. You cannot and should not write something like this: a sentence-long paragraph, followed by two paragraphs touching upon the same section, then a-couple-of-sentences-long writing that touches on several aspects. No, everything should be balanced and up to the point.

Support

No point in giving opinions that cannot be backed up. You need to offer some support to them. This comes both from your own written text, and from outside sources from books or the internet. By proofing up your arguments you show your understanding of the text and offer the reader a better way to understand it themselves. But keep in mind – credible sources only. (Oh, here goes that favorite meme down the drain!)

Now, something that deserves a whole paragraph itself and, thus, disturbs the balance we talked about above. But it’s worth it – CITE your sources. Credits are always to be given properly.

Transition

For a magnificent essay, you need to provide a good sense of flow. To do that, you need to use effective transitions. They are the way you go from one idea to the next. In the lower grades, you did that by using words such as “first”, “second”, “finally”, etc. But now you need to do better and use more conversational transitions that don’t allow for awkward stops and pauses.

Personality

Here is another important aspect – you need to insert some of your personality into the essay. You don’t need to go purely academic. This is interpretive writing which means you need to interject some of your opinions and thoughts (of course, backed up by credible sources). This allows for a better flow, easier reading, and your essay will look much more well-crafted to your teacher.

Interpretive Essays Aren’t a Summary

No, no, no. That’s a big no! When writing an interpretive essay, you shouldn’t put down some summary. Don’t simply tell, for example, what is one person like, what are they doing for a living, what their personality is. You should, rather, make connections between that and your main point in the thesis. For example, when you want to touch upon how two people interact and why is that important, you need to discuss their relationships and how their various circumstances affect those. Don’t go with “what”, go with “why”.

Do I Need an Outline?

Sure, many students choose to go with an outline to help them through the process of writing an interpretive essay. That is totally up to you, though. Crafting such can allow you to organize your thoughts and ideas. It saves you time and eases up the process of writing. By having an outline, you have all the main points right in front of you. Now all you have to do is fill in the gaps (aka. the information).

Conclusion

Essays, in general, are personal favorites of teachers. Yes, we understand why that is so. We won’t go into those details here; they are too many to be discussed in several pages. Rather, we simply want to point out that we do understand why your teacher has handed you an assignment for an interpretive essay (as much as you don’t like it). Still, we understand that you may have troubles with that, as well. This is why we set it as our goal to help you out as much as we can. So, we compiled a shortlist of things to do when you have such an assignment. If you choose to follow our guidance, we are certain that your result will be a top-notch interpretive essay that’s going to get you your next A.

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