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Writing guide

Goal: reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man.

Work: mimic and edit; every good essay is like a fine product which has gone through tons of modifications. 

Caution! Order of a writer’s thought flow vs the order of reader

Key: Define and relate

Every thing you say has to be linked to your topic. You need to understand and show the links between each concepts – logic. 

Hints: Take “Regulation on Social Media” as an example. Research vertically (historically) – e.g. traditional social media vs social media and horizontally – e.g. comparing regulations on traditional media to see the need for social media.

Context and Audience (readers): 

Concepts: think them through; define if needed

Opinions or arguments: others’ and/or yours

Evidence: facts and stories/experiences, survey, statistics, etc. 

Readers should be able to see your opinions/arguments, apart from your evidence. 

Note: Opinion vs evidence

Analysis on cause


Like in a math proof: 

Topic (goal, concepts and relationships)

Logic: links between the concepts and relationships. 

Rhythm of sentences: Mainly complex, separated by a simple sentence here and there.

Important places in a sentence: its beginning and end: so

Conjunction words to show your logic

Start a sentence with varied subjects:

Formal nouns to replace verbs, adverbs

The Sporting Spirit, Trading Standards 



  1. Analyze Topic (Define)
  2. Opinion to be opposed
  3. Own opinion
  4. Evidence, arguments, examples
  5. Causes
  6. Suggestions, solutions etc. 

Ideas / thoughts: concepts, opinions, arguments (reasons, reasoning), logic – links between concepts and between opinions and arguments

Your idea is + adj. 

  • bright, brilliant, clever, excellent, good, great, marvelous | valuable, worthwhile | exciting, inspirational, interesting, stimulating | constructive, positive | creative, imaginative, innovative, original | wacky | big
  • | alternative
  • | original, fresh, new | absurd, bad, mistaken, ridiculous | crackpot, crazy, mad, outlandish, wild | half-baked | ambitious, big, grand
  • | grandiose | basic

You + v. + idea

  • have
  • | come up with, dream up, hit on/upon, produce, think up
  • | draw, get
  • | contribute, input | moot, put forward | promote, push (forward), sell
  • | welcome
  • | consider, entertain, flirt with, toy with
  • | mull over, turn over
  • | encourage, generate
  • | stifle
  • | reject, scoff at, veto | test, try out | bounce around, bounce off sb, brainstorm, discuss, explore, talk about
  • | exchange, pool, share | give sb
  • | apply, implement, put into action/effect/practice
  • | transform, translate
  • | steal
  • | impose

idea + v. 

  • come into sb’s head/mind, come to sb, flash across/into sb’s mind/brain, hit sb, occur to sb, pop into sb’s head, strike sb
  • | emerge, evolve, form, grow
  • | flow
  • | come from sb/sth, date back from/to sth, originate, start, stem from sth
  • | blossom, work (out)T
  • | lead
  • | come to nothing


personal opinions for/against

Have you defined / understood your concepts clearly?

clear / profound understanding 


arguments: logic / reasoning / justification

  • powerful, sound, strong, valid | compelling, conclusive, convincing, persuasive | plausible
  • spurious, tenuous, weak | balanced
  • clear and smooth, unobstructed, 
  • out of focus, flawed, beyond my understanding
  • confusing, muddled, chaotic, disordered
  • 连贯: coherent, consistent, lucid, articulate, 
  • intelligible, comprehensible, joined-up


adequate considerations / exploitation in  various cases/situations  actual, concrete, real/real-life;