What to do before your submit your personal essay

Writing a personal essay is something that a lot of students get stressed out about. If you don’t have enough time to work on it, don’t have the writing skills to do it, don’t want to, or all of the above, then you’re not alone. Being frustrated over homework isn’t new to any of us, but going through the same thing over and over with each new assignment is not fun at all. How can you make writing and submitting personal essays – among other homework – easier and less frustrating? If you read to the end of this page, you’ll find the answer.

With an assignment like this, you need to realize early on that writing about yourself is tough. You’ll need other people’s insight and help to succeed with a personal essay. This is because other people often know you better than you know yourself, and can offer different perspectives on a shared memory that will give depth to your essay. Just like a film that shows an event from different people’s points of view, having your essay talk about other people who have influenced your life will give it more meaning and resonance. Write down some notes about the people in your life that are involved with memories and anecdotes you plan on using for this essay.

Checklist for Personal Essays

Now that you’ve got an idea of what to write in your essay, you need to know what else to do before submitting it. Besides the instructions from your teacher, there are a few basic items that you can look for before handing in your personal essay.

  • Check the formatting: should be double spaced, 12 point font, 1inch margins
  • Do you have an appropriate title, the date, your name and the class name at the top of the page?
  • Go over it one more time for spelling and grammar checks
  • Print it off and read it (and give it to a friend to read) because it’s easier to see mistakes on physical paper than on a screen
  • Think of your main topic: did you appropriately address it and stay on topic?
  • Make sure your personal essay is the right length as specified
  • Do you need any header or footer information such as page numbers?
  • Talk with your fellow students and find out what they’re doing for their own essays; you might have missed something that they’ll remember for you