How to Start an Essay with a Quote? Smart Tips & Tricks

As Jeff Goins said: Nobody becomes an expert without years of practice. So rather than being a matter of talent, expertise is a matter of practice. Among various areas that require practice, academic writing ranks top on the list. 

Specifically, hooking your readers into reading your papers calls for practice on the best ways to start an essay. Quotes rank among the popular essay openings for academic and non-academic assignments. 

Unfortunately, students often quote irrelevant, cliché quotes, boring their readers and losing their focus reading the paper. this article will discuss tips on how to use essay quotes in the introduction and capture your reader’s attention. 

Can you start an essay with a quote?

Starting an essay often proves a daunting task for students. besides having to condense your essay into a short paragraph that captures the essence of your paper, the introduction ought to hook your reader into reading your entire essay. 

A quote, which is a passage from another writer’s work, allows you to highlight the gist of your paper without dwelling on the content of your essay. The essay highlights your stance on a topic while borrowing the credibility of authority to establish your key argument.

Additionally, beginning an essay with a quote allows you to quickly dive into the topic without boring the reader with minute details.

How to start off an essay with a quote

Although quotes are a great way to start off your essay, not every quote fits the bill for a great essay opener. Often, students opt to use a popular quote that does not necessarily highlight their topic. 

This approach often results in an incoherent introduction and bores the reader due to its lack of originality. Some of the tips on how to start an essay with a quote include: 

  1. Quote a surprising fact from a less popular person

Taking the popular route is bound to yield unoriginal introductions that barely pique your reader’s interest. Ideally, select a less popular quote that is relevant to your topic. the quote should highlight an idea that may spark a debate, serving as a platform on which to present your thesis statement. 

Preferably, the quote should be from a field expert, making it relatable for your readers. You may also choose to show the connection of your topic to the quote, helping the reader to identify your stance on the topic. 

  1. Contradict a well know quote

Another approach for starting an essay with a quote is to contest a popular quote. This approach allows you to express the fallacies and knowledge gaps in a topic, setting the ground for your arguments.

Doing so will highlight the knowledge gaps you intend to fill and the counterarguments you intend to contest within your paper. your introduction will thus goad the reader to interact with your paper further to clarify the gaps you’ve highlighted in the introduction. 

When doing this, opt for an approach where you highlight each shortcoming of the author’s stance. Also, avoid clarifying your standpoint in this section, saving your arguments for your essay’s body. 

  1. Attribute correctly

Unfortunately, a poor quotation may easily make you a culprit for plagiarism by omission. As such, be keen to credit every source for your quotes, avoiding plagiarism and allowing your reader to trace the source to establish the context in which a quote was originally used. 

  1. Use a fragment of the quote

The introduction makes up a small part of your paper’s total word count. As such, you should be succinct and straight to the point to deliver your ideas and hook the reader. Occupying your introduction with a quote is thus bound to bore the reader. 

When quoting various items, select the relevant part that highlights your essay’s essence. This will make ample room for other portions of your introduction, ensuring that your reader has a glimpse of the structure and key research objectives of your paper. 

  1. Ensure that the quote fits the tone of your paper

If you are writing a paper on a mechanical topic, a funny quote may not be best suited for your essay. Ideally, your quote should adhere to your paper’s tone, building towards your paper from the start. 

Final take

So, should you start an essay with a quote? That is entirely your decision. However, be keen to follow the above tips when opening your essay with a quote to make the most impact on your readers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *