At this point, if you are comfortable with the content of your essay, all that is left is finalizing the details. This is the step where you can catch the silly grammatical mistakes that cost you points; it is also where you can throw in a strong concluding sentence. It is not too late to go back and expand on areas that you think are important, or cut out some parts that you think may distract the reader from your main point. If you feel that your essay contains the seven qualities of a good literary analysis then move on to finalizing the smaller details. When finalizing, be mindful of the errors you have made in previous papers so you do not make them again.
* Align the Grammar checklist with your essay, and search for any errors that you may have overlooked
* Have fellow peer-editors do the same; they may catch mistakes that you missed.
* Read your essay out loud; by doing this you may identify a sentence that needs to be reworded, or maybe a character’s name that needs to be replaced.
* Search for sentences that are wordy, and use effective diction to make them concise.
* Run a spell check, but do not rely too heavily on it because it may replace a word with another awkward/irrelevant word. It also may not catch all your mistakes.
* Check to see that all quotes are cited properly. Citing your sources properly is extremely important when finalizing your essay. To avoid plagiarism make sure that your quotes are cited correctly and you have a works cited page. It may seem tedious at first, but once you get the hang of it, it's really not that bad. We have provided a great resource that will help you cite your sources correctly.
*Many professors won't allow you to use outside sources, but it is good to know that if you don't cite your sources properly your teacher has the right to give you a failing grade on the paper and in some cases a failing grade in the course. Citing your sources is important, so try to stay organized if you are using many outside sources.
Research and Documentation Online
This website is great for giving you a good place to start if you are not yet sure about how to cite in your essay.
*Make sure your document is formatted appropriately:
* Heading matches teacher’s requirements
* Appropriate title (includes the work’s name)
* Margins, fonts, and spacing are not obnoxious but consistent
* Use a consistent and correct method when you mention the text’s title (Underline/italicize for longer texts. Quotes for shorter texts).
Finalizing has multiple benefits. It gives you a chance to seek helpful feedback from proof-readers. It allows fine-tuning and checking to see that introductory phrases are not used more than once. The biggest advantage to finalizing, however, is simple: reading over the work one last time to make sure you are satisfied with it.
"When inserting a quote in your essay, don't forget to place your punctuation inside the quote and not outside. I always overlooked this, and it was nice to have someone catch it in a peer review!" - Carli