How to Write a Great Essay in 24 Hours or Less

Googling “how to write an essay fast” is the first thing every student does when faced with a short deadline. That usually takes them to a bunch of articles, how-to videos, guides on how to write fast, and so on. It will give you 214.000.000 plus results. That’s a lot of content on one simple question!

So, how you approach this? How any student should approach this issue?

Well, first of all, know that there is no magic spell, no shortcut that will get you from zero to the perfect essay fast and effortlessly.

At the same time, that doesn’t mean it cannot be done as many students have done it. The short answer is a systematic approach, organized workflow, time management, and patience.

The somewhat longer answer, our blueprint to writing an essay in 24 hours or less, is in the lines that follow. This is not a blueprint per se, but a set of very practical, proven in practice tips on how to get the job done fast, given a short deadline.

1. Fully Comprehend The Essay Question

Take your time to read it carefully so that you comprehend every aspect of it, not just the obvious ones. More than often, professors formulate their essay questions so that they have more than one layer.

While you are doing it, keep in mind the style of your professor and what they want to see in the essay. To that end, you might want to consider talking to a senior that has experience with that particular professor.

The better you understand the essay question, as well as your professor’s expectations, the greater your chances for a great essay, despite the short deadline hanging over you.

2. Research Only What’s Necessary

Stay focused only on the relevant issues and don’t get distracted by anything else. Be brief, be concise, and waste time on nothing else. Time is a finite resource that can be easily dispersed if you lose your focus on topics that are not that relevant for your work.

3. Create Your Outline

Break your essay into five paragraphs, the introduction and conclusion included. Each paragraph needs to make a point, evidence that supports it, a sentence that summarizes it, and a transition that will lead to the next paragraph. By this point is about creating your first draft. You can complete your paragraphs later.

4. Complete the Paragraphs First

Make sure that your paragraphs contain strong and concise sentences. Present your arguments with superlatives if needed. Of course, they need to be backed by evenly strong evidence. While you are at it, add the references as you go, simultaneously for each paragraph.

5. Intro & Conclusion

The introduction is what sets the tone of your essay and explains what follows next. It is the magnet that will interest the reader into the rest of the essay. Either your professor will carefully go through your paragraphs or will just check your main points without giving them a second thought.

The conclusion is your “drop mic” moment. To write it fast, without too much pondering on it, go through the points you’ve made in the introduction, and implement them in the conclusion.

6. Proofread Your Paper

If you feel too tired, ask a colleague or a friend to take the first swipe. Or use proofreading tools like Grammarly. In meanwhile, rest your eyes on something else from your computer screen. Sometimes even short, half an hour nap can help you feel rejuvenated. Taking a nap while rushing to meet a deadline might feel like a piece of counter-productive advice, but it is not if you plan your time well.

The magic spell on how to write an essay fast is all about your ability to stay focused, follow a writing plan (as the one proposed here), and not to be tempted by distractions such as social media or social events.

All that might look like easy or even generic. But it’s not. There is nothing easy about staying focused for a prolonged period. As far as the generic part, once you start working the tips here won’t feel too generic.