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The Writer’s Reference Book



Persuasive essays attempt to get readers to accept the writer’s ideas. These ideas might be opinions or judgments, but mainly they are ideas that try to call the reader to action. In a persuasive essay the writer attempts to convince the audience that his/her thesis is valid.

Example persuasive essay prompts

  • Write an essay persuading the reader that school uniforms are or are not necessary.
  • Write an essay persuading the reader that students should or should not be required to perform community service before graduating high school.
  • Write an essay persuading the reader that a 12-month school year – with longer breaks – is a good or bad idea.

A writer can use connotative words to make a reader accept his or her ideas. A writer may also support his or her position with examples from history, current events, personal observations, and literature. This type of essay may be biased in favor of the writer’s ideas, but it should also be honest and accurate. For example, a writer discussing the benefits of a vegetarian diet should not generalize and call carnivores unhealthy or other names. Always be specific.

A persuasive essay should always try to get the reader to agree with the author.

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