The Bad Essay

How many methods are there to write a bad essay? Let us count the ways:

  1. start writing without doing any planning
  2. ramble
  3. throw in "fancy" words just because they look pretty
  4. go on and on about yourself (personal examples are okay, just don't go on and on about yourself)
  5. use slang
  6. get lazy and cut the essay short
  7. write an essay about something other than what the prompt asked
  8. include a lot of spelling, punctuation, grammar, etc. errors
  9. write illegibly
  10. write a piece of "creative writing"—this is an essay and should be very straight-forward in its tone and narrative, like a textbook
  11. use "well" often
  12. Start your paragraphs with, "First…", "Secondly…", "Thirdly…", "Fourth…", "Fifth…" - how high can you go?
  13. use "like" and "alot", like, alot. Ex: "Like, alot of people, like, talk, like alot." Note: "alot" is not a word, it's two words: "a lot." "Allot" means to give out something, like "allot money to each district."

Example Essay

There really is no point to giving an example of a bad essay. That's like trying to teach a person to drive a car by showing a movie clip of a person driving off a cliff then saying, "Don't do this." It teaches nothing about how to drive a car.

Essay One

This essay is more for fun than anything else. Suppose you're given the prompt (notice that it is general in nature but likely pertains to something in a high school person's life, therefore it's typical of an ACT writing prompt).

Discuss the impact of movies on teens today.

Well, U C what had happened was…movies are like, awesome. I like movies. I mean I like really really like movies. I actually went to the movies last night with some friends. The movie wasnt good but it was fun anyway. the girl in the movie was so trashy. that's what happens sometimes, teens see movies then do what they see. I hate that. Like this girl I know, she always dresses like all hip-hop. But shes not. she just dresses that way but shes not, you know what i mean?

Anyway, movies impact teens today. This is so true and i agree with it. there are lots of types of movies. Some are good and some are bad. Some are like, really bad and some are like really really really REALLY bad!!!! I like the good ones. A good movie does everything - it makes you laugh, it makes your cry. it makes you happy and sad too. Like i said good movies do everything. Thats why they impact teens today.

So in conclusion there are good movies and bad movies. Good movies have alot in them, like alot of good stuff. And in conclusion, thats why i like good movies but not bad ones.


Essay Two

Don't go crazy laying out the format of your essay. It's okay to introduce what you'll discuss, that's actually a good thing. But, don't go crazy laying it all out.

This is the first sentence of my essay. It also begins the first paragraph, my introductory paragraph. In this essay, I will first offer a thesis. This sentence is the thesis statement. Then, I will offer supporting paragraphs to my thesis. Lastly, a conclusion will follow. The introduction ends with this sentence.

This is the first supporting paragraph. And this sentence supports the paragraph, which in turn supports the essay. This sentence is a support sentence. It supports the first support paragraph, which supports the essay. Support is important, so support is included here. This concludes the first support paragraph.

This is the second supporting paragraph for this essay. It is similar to the second paragraph, but is dissimilar in that it is the second paragraph. More support is being given. This third paragraph is yet another supporting paragraph. This sentence concludes the second support paragraph.

In conclusion, this paragraph is written. It is the concluding paragraph. It sums up the essay. So, in sum, the essay was introduced in an introductory paragraph, was supported by a second and third paragraph, and was concluded here, in a conclusion. This sentence is the end of the essay.

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