The nice thing about essay type “Writing” is that it’s hardly any form of “Writing” at all. To give it a genre is really attributing it to too much. If you want to write a good “slice of life” piece of “writing” there are two very important things to keep in mind.
1: Have an interesting life.
The worst thing you can do when sharing about your life is to not have an interesting one. The good news is the average person lives a non-consequential life that is both unimportant and not interesting. The bad news is that you are most likely an average person. There are a few ways to get around this.
- Lie about your life.
Unless your name is Brian Williams or Bill O’Reilly, most people don’t give a shit. Just make sure that if you lie, don’t go over the top. You’ll insult your reader’s intelligence. For example: If you’re telling a story and you want to add some flair to it, don’t bookend it with someone getting stabbed. Stabbings involve police reports, hospital visits, scars and follow up alibi’s. You know what doesn’t? Stories about people doing something awkward, like pooping their pants or asking a non-pregnant woman when she’s due.
- Actively sabotage your life to make it interesting, allowing people to flock to your story not because it’s good, but because it’s so unapologetically different and deranged, no one will ever have the opportunity to life that kind of life because no one would will that on themselves or on others. Wild by Cheryl Strayed or anything by Hunter S. Thompson falls under this category. Others will be smitten by your work because they can’t imagine destroying themselves or their relationships with others for no apparent reason. Being selfish, running away from home, or doing copious amounts of drugs is a good way to kick start this option. Points for writing something after a bad breakup. Bonus points if you dumped ’em because they weren’t exciting enough.
iii: Be funny People will read about anything if it’s funny. My least favorite story to tell involves me dropping my motorcycle in from of 60 motorists. It’s a story where I am unable to pick up the bike, feet kicking and sliding beneath me like a Loony Tunes character and girls in bikini’s laugh at me. Motorists honk and my self esteem is at an all time low. I hate myself while I tell that story. But people find it funny. Remember: its OK to hate yourself, as long as people find you hating yourself funny.
4: Don’t be unfunny No one likes an unfunny person. They’re about as exciting as this year’s Call of Duty launch video: we’ve seen it all. We know plenty of unfunny people in the world, it’s the funny one’s that make it different. So remember, if you find yourself being unfunny, try being more funny. Paying attention to things like grammar, or properly numbered lists is something a boring person would do.
And there you have it! A quick and simple guide to the essay form of “writing.” Really, it’s all stream of consciousness, Tumblr bullshit, but every once in a while you find a diamond in the rough; a corn kernel in the pile of poo; basal cell cancer on an unblemished face: