is an essay?
essay is a focused piece of writing about a single topic. An essay
is more than just a
of information; an essay presents your views—your argument—about
provides support for your argument.
This general principle of
argument and support
whether you are arguing for a total ban on cigarette smoking,
between Victoria and Vancouver, or arguing about the importance of
culture and heritage. An
essay will contain your views because you choose
information you want to include, but it is not simply an expression
of your personal
Your arguments must be backed up—supported or explained in
basic approach to essay writing according to Sheridan Baker is to
and back it up." You
make your point in your thesis statement and in your body
you provide evidence for your point of view.
essay is a way of thinking about a topic that is different than
simply talking about it.
writing requires that you organize and express your thoughts
clearly. The same
of development that you used for writing
paragraphs—classification, cause and
etc.—can be used for writing essays.
the most basic level, an essay has a beginning, a middle, and an
end. These serve
purposes and should be distinct sections.
A more formal model of essay
Organization: Parts of an Essay
of the Essay
of Each Part
Lead in sentence
Introduce your topic
Capture the reader's interest
you want to make
Set the tone
1, 2,3, or more
Two or more supporting
Topic sentences for each
focus on a distinct
Paragraphs provide evidence
support the thesis
Transitions for continuity
ideas and between
Provide evidence to support
to explain your thesis
Include examples, facts,
helps support your
A reference to the thesis
but not an exact
A summary statement,
suggestion, etc., to
up the essay
Leave your reader with a
impression of the main
of your essay
Student Essay: Process
of the Essay
a hint about the content.
Catches the reader's
Style, Low Budget
to attract the
light, playful tone.
Are you a student or a perennially starving artist?
Do you feel you
more style in your little finger than most people have in their
but just not enough cash? Living
on a tight budget doesn't have to
living like a pauper.
a little bit of creative ingenuity, any
challenged young person can transform three major
of his or her meager existence—housing, clothing, and food—
an enviable lifestyle.
As trite as it sounds, the number on thing you can do to
you call home is something your mother told you: "Clean your
room!" Admittedly, many of us are card carrying members of the
Failure club and resist cleaning our rooms or going to bed at a
hour just on principle. But
there is certainly something to be said
finding that term paper or sketchpad exactly when you need it. On a
exciting note, decorating your space, whether it is a room or a
can be an inexpensive and satisfying creative endeavour. Enlist your
organize a house painting party and offer to help paint their place
time. Frequent thrift stores and develop an eye for discarded
would make one-of-a-kind furniture.
You can reveal your artistic side
recycling everything from old fabric to driftwood to create a unique
you can truly call your own. And
don't forget lighting. An
candles from the dollar store will transform any room into a cozy,
it doesn't have to cost a fortune to dress stylishly. Thanks to the
passion for retro and vintage clothing, (and mainstream culture's
embrace of the "new individuality) anyone can put some
skills to work and look like a fashionista without breaking the
There are at least three avenues to go to get panache for
there's the consignment store/thrift shop route. The secret is to go
and know what you are looking for.
It helps to have a look in mind
to familiarize yourself with the components of that look.
the all black wardrobe. The
trick here is that any a few good pieces are
and these can be mixed or matched easily without an additional
of cash for more colors or passing trends.
Finally, and probably the
fun, is organizing a clothes swapping party.
Gather together a few
friends, a bottle of wine, and any items that you haven't worn in
six months to trade in for something new and exciting.
you've upgraded your housing and your wardrobe, it's time to focus
food. It's one of the biggest budget items, but there's no reason
have to subsist on a diet of Kraft Dinner now matter how strapped
cash. The most helpful
thing you can do is to start off with a shopping
and buy staple that have a long shelf life and can be used in a
meals. It's also worth
investigating the world of ethnic cooking both as
source for economical nutritious meals and for the variety of tastes
to discover. Finally,
there is the ubiquitous potluck.
has saved many an impoverished young person from culinary
or near starvation.
the essay to a close by
summarizing or acknowledging the points made
the body of the essay
well is a state of mind; it depends more on using one's imagination
on the amount of money one has.
It's actually more of a challenge
more personally satisfying to think up alternative way to solve
Living in style on a tight budget forces you to be creative,
develop all sorts of new skills in the process. Becoming a gourmet
cook, making your own funky furniture and acquiring a knack for
timeless good quality clothing are but a few effects. These skills
last a lifetime and may come in handy later when money is
not so much of a concern.
thesis is a clear statement of the main point you are making in your
essay; it is more
just a simple statement of fact.
To say many people are stressed out these days is
a statement of fact. Your
reader expects to learn more. Why
are people stressed
What is the effect of stress on people's lives?
statement will not only state
topic, but it will offer a point of view or an opinion about the
topic. A better thesis
would be: Stress is having a serious impact on people's social,
work lives. In this
example, you can see that the thesis statement also plays a role in
the overall structure of your essay. It can provide a preview of
are preparing the reader—and yourself—for an essay that deals
the effects of stress
three clearly defined areas of people's lives.
essay without a clear thesis will feel flat and unconvincing no
matter how much
you present. Essayist
Sheridan Baker suggests that an essay without a thesis is
a "tour of the miscellaneous".
Your reader will quickly become bored and
of the point you are trying to make.
You must invite and interest your reader
your starting point should be a clear thesis. Your writing will be
stronger and more
focused if you recognize that the core of your essay is an argument
in support of
should be able to state the thesis of your essay readily to someone
who asks what
essay is about. If you
know what your essay is about—the main idea you are trying
get across—then your essay has a better chance of staying on
track. It is more
say that your essay is about arguments against capital punishment
than simply to say it
about capital punishment.
you are writing an essay about cars, it is not enough to say
"Cities today are filled with
Everyone knows this. A
more provocative thesis statement might be "Our
with cars is ruining the quality of life in our cities".
Then you certainly have
attention of all those car lovers and you've laid out the basis for
a clear and
You could go
one step further and outline the specific points you
going to make in your supporting paragraphs. For example: Our
obsession with cars
making us lazy, contributing to the destruction of the environment,
and destroying the
of our cities.
that Narrative and Process essays do not generally follow a three-point
pattern. A narrative
a sequence of events, while a process relates a series of steps.
this sample first paragraph the thesis statement is in bold.
Americans have long been obsessed with their cars. For many car owners, cars are
of their identity. The
owner of a sleek red sports car is trying to tell the world
he or she is young and exciting, and likes to live life in the fast
lane. There is no
that cars are both fun and a great convenience. However, our love affair with the
has had a serious effect on the quality of life in our cities. Our
cars is making us lazy, contributing to the destruction of the
environment, and is destroying the character of our cities.
a thesis statement from a topic
examples below show how general topics have been formed into clear
Topic: Japanese cars and American cars
statement: Because of their reliability, styling, and high resale
buyers are choosing Japanese cars over American cars. (division)
Topic: Technology and modern life
statement: In many ways technology has made our lives worse rather
Topic: Parenting styles.
statement: Parents can be grouped according to the parenting styles
practice: the strict, the liberal, and the hands-off.
Causes of Small Business Failure
businesses are a huge part of the Canadian economy. Some small
are quite successful, while others cannot even get off the ground or
they have started. There
are many reasons why businesses fail. The cause for small
failure can be found with employees, products, management, location,
owner. These all play a
major role in the success of a small business, and if any one
is overlooked, it can spell disaster for the business.
are the forefront of any small business.
They give primary attention to
customers in the store, while properly managing the products by
the merchandise. They provide the appropriate information about the
and products insuring that sales are made to produce revenue. With
falling on employee's shoulders, it is essential that they do a good
are bitter or unhappy with their job, employer, or working
revolt by providing poor customer service, or by being just
downright rude to
customers. These offended customers will tell others of their bad
that they don't shop there. Poor employee performance and behaviour
customers who will spend their money elsewhere.
order for small businesses to do well, they need to have a variety
of products to
from. Small businesses need to take a niche in the market they want
to tap so they
compete with the big chain stores.
When managers or owners become too aggressive
try to compete on a larger scale, they spread themselves too thin,
that are not needed or that their clientele doesn't want.
Having too much stock
inventory is essentially money that is ties up in products that
can't be sold or that have
be sold at a discount. Those
products become lost revenue for the business, putting
in a tight money situation and making it difficult to buy newer and
Overstocked stores lose their appeal by being too crowded,
difficult and causes customers to become bored looking at the same
owners rely on themselves and their mangers to communicate with
This communication is vital. It lets the owner know what is
happening on the
floor. A good manger ensures that the worker's needs, wants, and
and an communicated to the owner, and not overlooked. They can then work
to improve sales performance and customer service. Poor mangers may make
feel that their ideas are not being heard, and that they are not
able to get their
across to the owner. Furthermore,
a poorly managed store may have high employee
as a result of mismanagement. Employee
turnover can effect sales because
may have become accustomed to specific sales people and don't want
new or inexperienced employees.
key element in small business success is location. The store must be
accessible to its patrons. Good
location alone can create awareness of the sore and
promote business. Even
though many prime locations can cost a fortune to lease or
they may be worth it. A good location alone can make or break a
new stores try to save on rent and end up in out of the way locations
walk by traffic. Good location is especially important if the
business relies on impulse
or sells non-specialty products that customers can find elsewhere.
final ingredient in small business success is the owner.
Owners have to have
wits about them. A good
business plan can help the owner make key decisions.
need to be very attentive to the market they are involved in and be
changes to give themselves a competitive edge.
An owner who is unwilling or
to make changes and respond to demands from employees and the
fail, thus losing his or her dreams and investment.
some, being the owner of a small business can be a dream come true,
it can become a nightmare if managed poorly. There are many ways to
a small business, but there are just as many ways, if not more, to
fail. In spite of
challenges, those businesses that maintain a high quality of
employees and products,
effective mangers, are in good locations, and have responsive owners
stand a good
of becoming successful.
Student Essay: Classification
Sales and the People Who Run Them
the sunny days of summer draw nearer and the temperature rises, like
sales begin to pop up in front yards across the city. If you go for a walk or for a
on a sunny weekend, you will certainly come across one or more
balloons and handwritten signs attract bargain hunters.
Whenever I pass a
sale, I always stop and check things out.
Eventually, I have come to realize that
are several kinds of garage sales.
Generally garage sales and the people who hold
can be divided into four groups: the let's-have-fun garage sale, the
garage sale, the semi-professional garage sale, and the
first type is the let's have fun garage sale.
Cheerful and energetic housewives
operate this kind of sale. Their
purpose for having the sale is to have fun.
girls who pretend to be shop owners, they enjoy playing salespeople
at their own
sales. If you ask the
price of one of their items, they often begin to tell you a
of the item of family memories associated with the item instead of
they are generous and respond to your offer politely, for having fun
is the most important
thing for them. They are likely to say, "Take it, it's a garage
sale!" After the
they usually give unsold items to a charitable organization.
The second kind of garage sale is the wanna-make-money garage
for this garage sale is strictly to make money. People who have this kind of sale
not so smiley or friendly and give you sharp looks. The prices of their items are
higher than at other garage sales.
Some of the prices are ridiculously high for
goods. You may get a
sense of greed from these people.
They won't give in
negotiating a price with you, and in most cases, will refuse your
offer. Even if they
up not selling much of their stuff, they are not easily discouraged.
They will continue
hold garage sales until they sell all of their pricey items.
A more sophisticated type of garage sale is the
semi-professional garage sale.
kind of sale is similar to a trading business.
One of my neighbours holds this kind
sale. He goes to other
people's garage sales and buys things at low prices and then
them at his garage sale at a profit.
He goes all over the place and collects saleable
and then adds a few dollars on each price.
For people like him, garage sales are
a second job. The
proprietors of these sales are usually friendly and know how to
to their customers like good salesmen. They know the prices and
value of items and
can convince people that something is a good deal. Occasionally, they will sell you
at a give-away price when they sense it's time to get rid of old
there is the everything-must-go sale.
Mostly, people who are moving out
town hold this kind of sale. Everything
in this case means everything.
even their dogs are for sale. These
people usually don't close their sales after one
The sale continues until they leave town. At the beginning, they are
money, but as their departure date draws closer, they drop their
to have a nice chat with these people to find out when they are
leaving. In the
they will be desperate to dispose of their items and will give you a
really good price.
Besides finding good deals at garage sales, observing the
operating styles of the
who run them is entertaining. Garage sales reveal a part of their
tastes, and the style of the sale shows what kind of people they
are. Analyzing the
of garage sales and the people who hold them is for me a fascinating
Professional Versus Generic Equipment
sport of skateboarding is bigger than ever.
Its popularity has grown so
that the demand for products has opened up a huge opportunity for
to make skateboarding equipment.
Unfortunately, this demand for skateboarding
has resulted in an influx of cheap and inferior products which
equipment in the retail market.
Although inexpensive gear has put more
on skateboards, it's giving them products that are substantially
inferior in design,
and performance to professional gear. The design and quality of the
wheels is being overlooked in the production of the cheaper
decks can vary greatly in quality.
Professional skateboard decks are
from the highest quality laminated maple wood and the lightest and
This combination of wood and glue results in a deck that is
and has ample amounts of life or "pop". Generic decks are made from
plywood, which has no real
strength and wears out more rapidly than the maple
decks. The deck's
strength, life, and shape gives the skater an advantage in
new tricks. Cheaper
decks have very plain shapes and don't offer the same feel
a pro deck. Pro decks offer skaters a variety of shapes, concaves,
widths, and lengths,
skaters a more personalized piece of
equipment for their style of skating.
griptape on generic decks is of a lesser quality, offering for less
traction than the grip on
a pro board.
for the variety of professional and generic trucks on the market,
there are also
differences in quality. The trucks are the component of the board to
attach. They let the
skater turn the deck. Metal trucks have a true pivot point and
bushings that give skaters the ability to turn smoothly while they
set up for their
Pro trucks turn substantially better than cheap ones.
Pro quality trucks off
skater more selection, higher quality metals, and cleaner cast mold
on cheaper boards are usually made from low grade metal or plastic
even when used to perform basic skateboarding tricks like the grind.
The price of
set of pro trucks is 20 to 30 dollars higher than generic ones, but
the advantages and
justify the cost.
skaters should not overlook wheels in the purchase of a complete
Wheels are as important as decks and trucks. Skaters should
carefully. A good set of wheels allows the board to run smoothly on
all sorts of
There are drastic differences in the construction quality and
materials used in the
of pro quality and generic boards.
Good wheels are made of urethane, while the
of blank wheels on cheap boards are made of plastic. There are many different
of urethane which vary in durability, but all will outlast plastic.
to disintegrate and lose bits over time, giving the skater a bumpy
ride. Unlike plastic
professional ones come in a large variety of widths and diameters.
offer different levels of hardness which can really make a
difference to a seasoned
that skateboarding is so popular, there is a considerable stream of
onto the market. With
such a variety of equipment, it can be tough for someone
make an informed decision when buying a skateboard. The sheer quality of
equipment really makes a difference even for skaters who are just
pro gear has advantages over cheaper skateboarding equipment
the people designing and developing this gear are skaters who make
because they love the sport and care about its progression.