What makes an A essay different from a B essay? What makes one essay stand out among countless submissions while others barely make the grade?

The answer lies in both the content and the execution of your writing. Strong content that is poorly executed can lead to disappointing results, just as weak content cannot be saved by writing style alone.

A strong essay needs to be balanced. The writing should be informative and exciting but also fun to read. At the same time, your grammar, syntax, and punctuation should be on point.

If you’re struggling to make the grade and are unsure what you’re doing wrong, this article will cover ten basic strategies for improving your writing skills.

With a bit of understanding and a steady commitment to improving your craft, you should see a noticeable increase in your essay grades.

These strategies will help refine your writing style and structure while enhancing your analytical thinking and argumentative skills. We’ll also discuss some AI tools you can use starting today to make the essay writing process more fun and manageable.

1. Read a Lot

To truly master the art of writing, you must read as much as you can. To the best of your ability, immerse yourself in various texts and read across different genres and disciplines.

One of the best things you can do in essay writing is study published essays and periodicals to better understand how accomplished writers develop their arguments and maintain flow.

Of course, reading is a time-consuming activity. If you want to expand your knowledge without spending hours at a time in the library, consider using Smodin AI to help.

Smodin’s AI Summarizer can help you take long pieces of text and create an extractive or abstractive summary. This way, you can read a portion of the text and use AI to grasp the main points and key arguments without dedicating too much time to each piece.

Using this approach, you can cover a broader range of materials in a shorter time, particularly useful if you’re juggling multiple assignments or subjects during midterms or finals week.

2. Understand the Topic

A solid understanding of your essay topic is crucial to producing an engaging and insightful piece of writing. One of the worst things you can do as a student is to submit a paper without thoroughly researching and understanding the topic.

In other words, read the instructions before writing a single word. Invest however much time you need in researching and gathering relevant information.

Don’t rush the process, and take the time to build a strong foundation for your arguments. Study the counterarguments and ensure that your thesis is factually accurate and thoroughly thought-out.

That said, if you’re sitting at your desk, struggling to figure out where to start, or need help comprehending the topic, Smodin’s AI Chat can help you gather your thoughts.

The chat can help you understand complex topics using real-time Google Insights and provide instant access to a wealth of information with a single click.

3. Outline Your Essay

Even the best writers outline their writing before they begin. Creating an outline is crucial to organizing your thoughts and structuring your essay so it flows logically and cohesively.

When writing an essay, your topic will often take on new dimensions as you delve deeper into your research. Sometimes, your essay ends far off course and entirely different from what you envisioned.

An evolving outline can help you manage these ideas and ensure they are woven into your essay in a way that is meaningful and makes sense.

Any piece of writing needs a roadmap, whether it’s essays, articles, short stories, novels, or nonfiction books. Your ideas need to progress logically from one point to another so that they are persuasive and easy for your reader to follow.

Remember, effective time management is one of the secrets to writing an effective essay. That’s why it’s essential to use AI tools like Smodin to optimize your outlining process.

4. Master the Basics

A strong command of grammar, syntax, and punctuation is fundamental to writing an A-level essay. While most teachers and professors will not deduct points for an occasional misspelling or comma splice, too many mistakes will leave a negative impression on your reader.

The good news is that mastering the basics of writing has never been easier, thanks to the rise of AI. Do your best to practice the basics of good writing using ordinary resources like grammar guides and books, then use AI to enhance your knowledge.

In this area, Smodin has several tools that can help. The AI Rewriter can help you rewrite or completely recreate a piece of text to optimize the content so it is polished and easy to read.

You can also use the AI Chat feature to ask any question you like about grammar rules or stylistic choices, ensuring that you understand the fundamental principles of good writing.

5. Nail the Intro

The introduction of your essay sets the tone and hooks the reader. It also helps you make a strong impression and stand out among your peers.

A compelling intro should start with a strong first sentence that piques curiosity and leads the reader to the second sentence. That second sentence should lead the reader directly to the third, and so on.

Always do your best to think of a solid opening statement or pose a thought-provoking question. Remember, your essay is just one of many essays the teacher or professor must read, so you must do everything possible to stand out.

You want a clear and concise thesis that sets up the arguments you will develop throughout the body of your essay. Smodin’s AI Essay Writer can help you craft essays with compelling titles and opening paragraphs.

If you want to go the extra mile, consider trying the “Supercharge” option to tap into the power of a much more advanced and sophisticated AI model to take your writing to the next level.

6. Use the Active Voice

Generally, the active voice is more engaging and easy to read than the passive voice. Active voice constructions are more direct and energetic. They keep the reader engaged and make statements that are easier to visualize.

For example, compare the active sentence “The scientist conducted the experiment” with the passive “The experiment was conducted by the researcher.”

The active voice allows you to clearly identify who is taking action. This helps make your writing more assertive and easy to understand.

However, there are situations where the passive voice is appropriate or even necessary. For instance, if the person taking action is unknown, irrelevant, or obvious from the context, the passive voice might be the better choice.

For example, in scientific or formal reports, the passive voice is often used to create an impersonal tone and to emphasize the action rather than the person.

In most cases, you should use the active voice to make your arguments more engaging and your prose easier to follow.

7. Avoid Repetition

If you’ve ever tried to “word stuff” an essay to get to a specific word count, you know how easy it can be to repeat yourself accidentally. To keep your essay engaging, always do your best to avoid unnecessary repetition of words or ideas.

Never use the same word too often, especially in the same paragraph. Varying your language and sentence structure can help keep the reader engaged and create a pleasant cadence for your essay.

Always avoid rehashing the same ideas twice unless necessary to your thesis or argument. When in doubt, use Smodin’s Essay Writer to help structure your essays with a clear flow and easy-to-understand introductions and conclusions.

8. Get Feedback

Receiving feedback is one of the most effective ways to improve your writing. Of course, your teacher’s or professor’s feedback matters the most, but what if you want feedback before the final submission?

Seek constructive criticism from peers or tutors who can look at your writing and give you feedback to help you improve your writing. Being able to seek out and incorporate feedback is one of the most vital skills a student can have.

Also, consider using an AI tool like Smodin that can draw upon hundreds of thousands of published and peer-reviewed academic articles as a basis of comparison. By tapping into the unlimited power of AI, you can easily create essays that match college-level writing standards.

9. Organize Your References

Managing and organizing references can become overwhelming during the research phase of writing an essay.

It’s crucial to keep track of all the sources you consult to maintain academic integrity and avoid plagiarism. This is where tools like Smodin’s Research Paper Generator come into play.

Smodin’s Automatic References tool utilizes AI-powered algorithms to generate accurate citations. It pulls information from reliable databases like Google and Google Scholar, ensuring each reference is precise and meets academic standards.

This feature is a time-saver and a crucial component for any student who wants to ensure their work is appropriately credited and free of plagiarism concerns.

This tool streamlines the process of citation creation. The Automatic References feature formats each reference correctly according to your chosen style guide, whether it’s APA, MLA, Chicago, or another academic citation format.

This allows you to focus more on the content of your essay rather than the tedious task of manual citation. It’s like having a personal assistant at the click of a button.

10. Revise, Revise, Revise

The single best thing you can do to improve your writing is to get into a habit of constant revision. Try to write your essay as far in advance so that you can let it sit for a while and revisit it with fresh eyes.

You may be surprised how many areas of improvement become apparent after taking a short break. Allowing your writing to breathe after the initial draft can dramatically enhance its quality.

The three main things you want to look for are ways to improve clarity, strengthen your argument, and refine your language.

Of course, Smodin’s Rewriter Tool can help you do just that. Using this tool, you can easily see and improve sections that need rephrasing. Use this technology alongside your own manual refinements to create a tone and style that aligns with your voice and creates a unique style.

Then, once you’re 99% done and happy with your essay, run it through the Plagiarism and AI Content Detector to ensure its complete academic integrity.


Ultimately, your ability to improve your essay writing skills will depend on your level of dedication. Spend as much time as you can mastering the above techniques and consistently practice.

Remember, AI tools like Smodin have made essay writing more accessible than ever before. If you need help with essays and consistently bring home B, C, or even D-level papers, Smodin’s array of AI tools is what you need to take your writing to the next level-

  • AI Chatbot
  • AI tutoring for students
  • AI content detection
  • Plagiarism checker
  • Essay, research paper, and article writing features
  • Text summarizer
  • Homework solver

When you sign up for Smodin, all this and more comes standard. If you’re ready to get started, click here to try it!