?I want you to write a process essay on anything you want to write about by next time we meet,? your English teacher says to you as the bell rings, ending the class. But you don?t even know the first thing about process essays. You don?t even know what a process essay is! Don?t panic. The book ?Keys to Successful Writing,? by Marilyn Anderson, defines a process essay as ?a writing strategy that explains how to do something or how something works? (475). Even you can write a great process essay with a few basic steps: brainstorming, prewriting, drafting, and revising and polishing.
The first step when writing a process essay is to brainstorm for a topic. Choose something that you are good at: hobbies, interests, or jobs are great ideas. Your topic can range from fixing a flat tire to fixing a bite to eat, from making clothes to selling clothes to shopping for clothes.
It can be absolutely anything that you know how to do, anything you can dream up. Your topic should be something that is interesting or unusual. It should be something that is interesting to read about as well as something that you will enjoy writing about. Sit down with a piece of paper and something to write with and write down every idea that comes into your head, no matter what it is. After you have a good size list compiled, narrow it down until you have the best topic for you to write about. You have picked your topic! You are now ready to go on to the next step.
The next step to writing an effective process essay is prewriting. ?Keys?? says that prewriting ?involves exploring and gathering ideas and information and selecting and grouping this material? (471). In other words,