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5 Key Elements to consider when Writing a Literary Analysis Essay

The chances are that you may get asked to write a literary analysis essay at school or college, and you are very confused about how to get it done. Fret not. We have got you covered! We have mentioned all essential steps crucial to consider when writing a literary analysis essay.

But first, what literary analysis essay exactly is?

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Literary analysis entails delving deeply into a text, deciphering its meanings, and delving into why the author chose particular decisions. It can be used to describe novels, short tales, plays, poems, and any other type of literary work.

A literary analysis is just more than a summary of a piece of literature. Instead, it is a discussion of the work that expresses a writer’s personal viewpoint, interpretation, judgment, or critical evaluation of the work. This is done by looking at the literary methods, word choices, and so on. In a literary analysis, the author’s writing structures are used throughout the piece. In sum, the goal of a literary analysis is to figure out what the author is trying to say. So, it is not clear if you personally liked it or not. You can somehow agree or disagree with a point of view, but your personal opinion is not the essence of the essay.

Steps to writing Literary Analysis essay:

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1. Read the literature carefully:

First of all, make sure you write literature carefully. By writing literature carefully, it means understanding the literature completely so that you can analyze it in the best way possible. It is essential to understand the essence of the story, each character, and plot to develop the right and accurate ideas about the literature. You may not understand it completely in a go, so you must read and re-read over and over until you grasp it completely.

2. Highlight main parts of literature:

Secondly, you must highlight sentences, quotations, or passages from the literature if you think they are important, and you can discuss them in your essay. When writing the essay, it will be easy for you to pick up on them and write an analysis quickly without spending hours looking for the idea that is stuck in your mind.

3. Understand the writer’s perspective:

It is very important to understand the right perspective; otherwise, you may interpret it differently from the author’s point of view. In order to rightly get the author’s perspective, you must analyse how he/she has built a notion throughout the literature.

4. Write a thesis statement:

Every essay has a thesis statement, so has a literary analysis essay. A thesis statement is a sentence that precisely expresses what the whole of the essay will be about.

The analysis will require a solid thesis that expresses a writer’s point of view while also allowing for disagreement. The thesis should express the author’s point of view while also allowing readers to draw their own conclusions. Make sure your thesis statement is debatable and does not put an end to the discussion right at the beginning.

5. Create a rough draft and proofread:

Once you have done your homework on writing a literary analysis essay, it is finally time to write it. Do free writing, which is most recommendable; remember that your first write-up is not the final. Therefore, it is important to write independently, without any constraints. Once you are done with the first rough draft, proofread and edit it. The top-class literature essay writers or literature analysis writers, such as those of Essays.uk, recommend writing a draft and pruning it until perfection. Therefore, make sure you compose it according to the conventions of essay writing and abide by all the language rules such as grammar, spelling, and punctuations.

Tips for Writing Literary Analysis:

1. Write in Present tense:

The most common mistake that students make while writing literary analysis is writing in past tense. Make sure you always write it in the present tense.

2. Don’t retell the plot of the story:

The literary analysis does not mean retelling the story but writing a critical analysis. You will lose all your marks if you retell the plot of the story or summarise the whole story in essay. Instead, you must keep the main elements of literature such as plot, setting, story, and characters in your mind and analyze them rationally.

3. Use literary words:

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Oftentimes, it is recommended to write in simple and plain words, whereas, while writing the literary analysis essay, you have to make sure to use literary words that represent that you have enough literary knowledge to analyze and evaluate a literature piece of work.

4. Write in your own words:

As said earlier, you must not retell the story; you should also refrain from copying words and sentences from the literature you are analyzing. However, you can write quotations and mention words that need to be written unchanged in your literature analysis essay.

Bottom line:

When writing a literary analysis essay, you must be cautious about not only writing but reading and comprehending as well. Because unless you do not decipher the literature well, you are not able to write a potential analysis.


Ricardo is a freelance writer specialized in politics. He is with foreignpolicyi.org from the beginning and helps it grow. Email: richardorland4[at]gmai.com