How to Write a Great 500 Word Essay

Derived from the Latin word ‘exagium’, which can be interpreted as “to present one’s case”, essays are quite personalized and mostly a short piece of writing that speaks about one’s side of the argument, their ideas, stories, experiences, etc. It can also be said to a written piece that gives voice to the author’s thoughts and ideas.

At a basic level, an essay can be sub-classified into a formal or informal kind with the formal ones characterized by their length and definitive intent while the informal ones have a form of rambling structure, graceful writing, and humor.

Before we get into how you can make your 500 word essay stand out, it is important that you understand the types of essays we have and note that the essay type largely depends on what message the writer is trying to pass to the reader.

Types of Essays

On a broad level we, have four types of essay

Narrative Essays: 

This usually involves the writer narrating an incident, experience, or story to the reader through the essay. In this type of essay, the writer is basically making his writing as vivid (usually by using the principle of “show don’t tell” in the writing”) as possible to make it seem that the reader was right there when every incident occurred thereby getting the reader involved in the story.

Descriptive Essays:

As the name implies, this form of essay writing has to do with a lot of descriptive writing. It could be the description of an event, a place, an object, or even a memory. Note that this type of essay writing does not necessarily have to be a plain form writing involving only descriptions all over but you the writer also has to try involving the senses of the reader as a great descriptive essay involves a sharing of emotions of the writer to the reader. 

 Expository Essays:  

This type of essay is completely based on facts, giving examples, statistics, etc. there is not really a place for the emotions and feelings of the writer in an expository essay. In such an essay, it is all about the writer presenting a balanced study of a topic and thus requires the writer to have in-depth knowledge about the subject.

Persuasive Essays:

It is all about your skills of persuasion in this type of essay. Here, you are not only presenting facts but you also have to make the reader see your point of reason. In most cases, when writing a great persuasive essay, the writer must present both sides of the argument in favor and against his piece of writing, but the ultimate goal is convincing the reader that his own side of the argument carries more weight.

Writing an essay can sometimes be a challenging skill to gain mastery of as it usually has to do with both creativity and the logical planning of the writer. The below tips in writing a 500 word essay should guide your essay writing steps to a massive improvement.

Preparation for your 500 word essay writing:

There is no point in making a journey if it has no purpose or a means to an end, you should approach your essay writing method the same way by making sure you have a crystal; clear view of what you want to talk about and how you are going to do so.

Listed below are some points that should aid your preparation process:

  • Topic definition
  • Research
  • Thesis forming
  • Outline creation

Once all of the above are well structured out, you are pretty much ready to write out your essay.

Format of an Essay

Now there is no set in the stone format of an essay. You might find it hard to believe how many pieces of literature that have ever been written were actually nothing less than essays, or evolved into a more complex form gotten from the essay, however, there is a basic structure that should be generally followed while writing essays. Having a vast number of topics to write on; an essay can range from why the federal government of the country needs to work on transportation to why pineapples are a great fruit to eat daily, etc. It can also contain as brief as 500 words, it can also be as much as 5000 words or more.  However, most essays fall within the range of around 1000 to 3000 words, providing the writer with enough space to really delve into the writing for the purpose of the essay.

All essays require an introduction, body paragraphs in support of the argumentative thesis statement, and a conclusion hence a template of 5 paragraphs is usually the standard for a 500 word essay. It is always best to make the introduction and conclusion 100 words long each while the body paragraph contains 300 words.


An introduction contains the first paragraph of your essay and it involves you presenting your topic to the reader for the first time. Generally, the introductory paragraph should not be very long, having about 4-6 lines.

The introduction is the platform that sets the tone for your essay so always ensure that the kind of introduction you go for is one that grabs the attention of the reader and gives them an idea of what to expect

Hook your reader

The sentence of the introduction that piques your reader’s interest and curiosity in your writing is sometimes called the hook. A hook in essay writing could be a surprising fact, a bold statement on the relevance of the topic, a surprising fact, or even a question that intrigues the reader.

 Topic background

Next, it is also necessary to give context that will aid your reader’s understanding of the argument.  You could go about this by explaining difficult terms (if there are any in your introduction) and giving an overview of debates on the topic or providing a background. Avoid giving off too many details in the introduction—as your elaboration will be done later in the body of the essay.

Present the thesis statement

The next step in your writing should involve your thesis. A thesis is basically the focal point of the argument you are about to make and brings out the main idea of the writer thereby providing a focal point and positioning of the topic. Just as we have various types of essays, thesis statements also vary accordingly.

A good thesis statement should in most cases be short and concise while also following along with your introduction, try avoiding using a lot of words that are not necessary or making it too big and grand thereby leading to thesis statements that do not cover everything, for example, a thesis statement like “fruits should be eaten daily to fight against scurvy” is one that could be better restructured with “Children within the ages 2-10 need a lot of vitamin C  found in citrus fruits which aids in the prevention of the scurvy disease”. Because of the smaller focal point in the later thesis statement, you can also get to discuss the overall topic that you might want to talk about which is a scurvy disease.

In thesis statements, claims can be made and you want to ensure that your thesis statement is not only arguable but that it provides an answer or support to the structure of your topic. You should see to it that your evidence is supporting a claim that you have made and not against it. This is why it’s very important to read and do some research about a topic first before arriving at a conclusion.

Writing the main body

Arguments, explanations, and descriptions all in support of your thesis fall within the body of your essay. The provision of evidence and the development of your ideas and claims brought up within the thesis are all found here also. She ensures that your interpretation of the analysis of information is on point and gives more power to your argument or description. This is quite important to note as the word range (being 500 words) does not really give you the space for anything much else in the body of your essay aside from your strongest points. This, therefore, is where the proper planning and research that you have carried out earlier will guide you through.

Have a clear structure

The essay you write should in most cases be viewed as an argument or a speech hence ensuring that it has a logical structure, with all your points for your arguments or reason coming together to answer the question or support your claim. It is best to make use of a few major points which will become your main paragraphs. Two to three main paragraphs is a good number for a 500 word essay.

Concluding your essay

While it is always a good idea, to begin with, the main points and the overview direction with which the essay follows, introducing your main points and the general direction your essay will take, always remember to not reveal all and hold back to something for your conclusion for if you go about pretty much repeating just about the things that were already mentioned in your introduction, the conclusion is pretty much a pointless means to an end.

The conclusion is basically the final paragraph of an essay. A great conclusion should have components of you returning to your thesis, encapsulating your main points, or having a sentence that leaves a lasting impression on the reader. It is also important to bear in mind that making phrases such as “To sum up…” or “In conclusion…” is not a good idea for starting your concluding sentence. Thinking of your conclusion as the climax to the buildup of your essay/speech is an important aspect to go about it.


Anyone can make use of the above-given tips and come up with an essay but what adds the touch of uniqueness to it is the personal take on the topic that you are trying to discuss.

Becoming a great essay writer, be it 500 or 5000 words demands the creativity of the writer as it is a powerful tool in keeping the reader’s attention while also passing your point across.

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