An introduction paragraph is the foundation of an essay and the reader’s first impression of you, the writer. Without a strong introduction, your essay will fall apart. Starting your introduction isn’t always easy though–we’ve all experienced the dreaded writer’s block. Luckily, we’ve come up with some ideas to get you writing.
Stop staring at a blank page and try out these tips!
- Craft a powerful thesis: If you have a strong thesis, you have a strong setup for the rest of your essay. Make sure your thesis is clear too. If your thesis is confusing, your whole essay will be confusing. Remember to place your thesis at the end of the introduction after you’ve set up background information and a hook.
- Hook the reader: Get the reader interested—use something surprising, a story, a relevant example, or an intriguing question. Be creative! Besides the thesis, the hook is the most important part of the introduction. Without a captivating hook, the reader will assume the whole essay is uninteresting and stop reading.
- Give enough background information: Don’t leave the reader in the dark. If you’re writing for a general audience, leave enough detail for the reader to know what’s going on.
- Avoid cliches: Instead, use something specific and from your own experiences.
- Keep it relevant: Skip irrelevant details! Maintain your focus on your primary argument or topic. Nothing makes the reader roll their eyes like excessive details.
- Don’t ramble: Avoid rambling introductions–lengthy introductions bore the reader.
- Make sure you understand what your essay or prompt is asking: Read carefully—if you don’t understand what you’re supposed to write about, your whole essay will be off topic.
- Try writing the introduction last: You may have a better idea of how to organize your introduction after you’ve written your whole essay, or you may come up with new ideas once you start writing. It’s okay to save it for last!