The purpose of a persuasive essay (also known as an argumentative persuasion essay) is to convince the reader that your thesis is logically more believable than an opposing view.
The process for creating a persuasive essay starts with your choice of a thesis, which must be carefully considered. Then, you must research to find facts to support your thesis. It is in finding these supporting facts, statistics, and examples, from authoritative and trustworthy sources, and tying them directly to your thesis, that will make your persuasive essay stand out among others.
In order to prove your thesis and supporting facts are more reasonably acceptable than the opposite view, you must also anticipate the conflicting thesis (known as the antithesis) and the rival facts which may exist. As you can see, this is an arduous process.
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Tips for Planning and Writing a Persuasive Essay
Explore your feelings about the thesis you have in mind. Can you clearly state your position, and is it a view you are ready to research and defend? Your motivation to prove your point on this topic will help determine the success of your persuasive essay.
Know your audience. Will they be ready to accept your argument, or will you have to 'go the extra mile' in your research to bring them over to your side?
Data, data, data. You know you need proven facts, statistics, examples, etc. Remember; a statement of fact without citing an authoritative source diminishes the validity of the statement. Citing and footnoting your expert sources will reinforce the validity of your claims.
Plan the organization of your persuasion essay. Arrange your thesis statement(s) to determine the order of subjects to be addressed.
Spend time examining the antithesis (the opposite view of your thesis). Knowing and understanding the arguments opposed to your thesis will prove that your view is debatable, and will uncover the weaknesses of the opposition. Dispelling the 'truths' of the opposing view can help your argument, and may help you discover weaknesses in your own position.