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Writing a Familiar Essay

Definition and Recommendations for Writing a Familiar Essay

Very often, students at secondary or high school level do not know very much about writing familiar essays since these are considered to be difficult assignments. A familiar essay is a type of writing that focuses on the writer’s own exploration and reflections on such topics as “Providing Advice” and “Being Untrue to Oneself.”   

Many students think that writing a familiar essay is quite a similar to writing a personal essay. Yet, research is not necessary in a familiar essay. Instead, this type of essay tends to explore the writer’s own philosophical outlook or their attitude, and these do not need to be supported with any evidence or research materials.

Audience and Essay Tone

If you are asked to write a familiar essay, try to imagine that you are addressing just one reader. This person is sufficiently educated and intelligent enough to understand your topic. Therefore, it is unnecessary for you to provide any further explanations or clarifications. Consider that your reader is keen to know what you think of the topic i.e. they are interested in your opinion. You may even use personal pronouns such as “I” and “you” to fully interact with your reader.

Create an Essay Plan

While writing a familiar essay may be similar to writing a personal essay, it is still necessary for the writer to organize their ideas prior to starting to write. You may start by writing freely for a few minutes i.e. by jotting down all your ideas on a piece of paper as they occur to you. You need not worry at this stage about content. Later, your task will be to pick out the most important and valuable ideas for your essay outline. Then you will further fine-tune these until they become your final paper.

Writing Your Essay

The next step is to write your actual essay using the outline you created. The importance of an outline should not be underestimated and this should be followed throughout the entire writing process. Because a familiar essay is very personal in its nature, it is commonplace for students to go off track and away from the topic(s) they were initially meant to focus on. A good tip for writing this type of essay is to write it all in one go (in just a single session). This will help you retain your focus.  

Using Sources

A lot of tutors request that students do not use references in familiar essay assignments. You should, however, read the instructions you are given carefully. If your tutor permits it, you may use quotations from renowned philosophers to illustrate or prove a particular point. In any case, it is not necessary to use external arguments since your own reflections should be the focus of your paper.

Revise Your Work

You should always read back over your essays and revise it before you submit it. Your reader should be able to clearly understand your personal stance. Check the style and tone of your writing. Make sure you eliminate any inconsistencies in style. If, for instance, you start with an exuberant tone, this should be visible in your closing paragraph. Check also that your work is coherent and unified.  

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