Ryan Holiday: How to Write Any Essay: The Spartan System
Writing the perfect paper is a lot like a military operation. It takes discipline, foresight, research, strategy, and, if done right, ends in total victory. It follows then that the best advice for writing a paper -- be it a high school essay, a college research paper, or even an office memo at a Fortune 500 company -- would come from the tactics of a brilliant military commander. I discovered these tactics myself as a student, reading in awe of the mastery of ancient military masters and put them to good use. I could then -- and still can, when necessary -- bust out a ten or even twenty page paper with a few days notice. What Was My Secret? In my reading of Greek history, I stumbled across an obscure military maneuver, one designed for troops penetrating deep in enemy lines. My essay format works the same. Forget your teacher's boring prompt. Here is the outline for a hypothetical five paragraph paper: Introduction: (see a complete intro example here) Begin with a broad, conclusive hook.