Essay Guides

How to Write a Good Hook for an Essay

Essay hook
Worried about writing a unique paper?

Use our free
Readability checker

An essay hook is a captivating opening sentence. Its purpose is to evoke  the reader's curiosity and encourage them to keep reading. A hook can take various forms, such as a thought-provoking question, a surprising fact or a relevant quote.

True anglers know that there are different types of fishing hooks designed for specific bait. If we draw an analogy between fishing and academic writing, we'll understand that a hook serves the same purpose here and there. In the first case, you need to catch fish. And when you are writing an essay, you want to grab your reader's attention. There are also different ways to hook readers in various types of papers. 

In this article, we will describe some most popular attention-grabbing techniques. You will find out what good hooks for essays are and how to write them.  

What Is a Hook in Writing

First of all, let's grasp what hooks for essays are and what their purpose is. Have you ever felt that your writing lacks a highlight making readers stunned from the first line? Or maybe your teacher didn't grade a paper you've written as high as you wanted? One reason for this could be an absence of a catchy statement usually included in an introduction. So hook is a remark located in the very first paragraph that grabs readers' attention.

Why do you need it in an essay? That's easy. If you want people not to yawn when they start reading your paper but get excited right away, use hooks. Indeed, if your audience becomes indifferent, all efforts to inform, convince or entertain them with your writing might be in vain. Let's make it clear. We don't mean that your essay is worthless without an attention-grabber at the beginning. Still, it will be more complicated to appeal to the readers' curiosity, interest, or emotions if you don't use it. A hook will also ensure that your audience concentrates on your paper and dives deeper into the content.

As we mentioned before, the hook is usually an opening line of the first paragraph. Along with background information and thesis statement, it builds an introduction. Check the image below and see a typical structure of an introduction:  

Essay Introduction Structure

How to Write a Hook

There are different ways of writing a hook. Before choosing one, always keep in mind:

  • Type of paper and its purpose (persuasive, narrative, analytical essays, and so on)
  • Writing style and tone
  • Target audience

Sometimes, it can be challenging to come up with corresponding hook from the beginning. In this case, you may write the complete introduction after you finish the entire paper. This way, you will have clearer vision of which passage correlates best with the content. Also, to help you choose the best essay hook, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Which feelings am I appealing to
  2. What new information do I want to give my readers

Any hook should reflect the intention of your writing. Therefore, do not choose one just because it sounds cool. Make sure it is closely connected with your essay title of choice and thesis statement.

We will mention the most popular hooks as one of the ways to start an essay below for consideration.  

1. Think of Using a Quote as a Hook

One catchy hook for essay is a quote by a well-known person or historical figure. A thematically chosen quotation may give the readers sense of what comes next in your writing. Such an approach doesn't drop piles of boring information on them right away. Instead, it prepares your readers and stirs up their interest to see your interpretation of the chosen words.

Here is how to quote example you can use for an essay in ethics:  

Example of using a quote as a hook: "Be like the flower that gives its fragrance to even the hand that crushes it." - Imam Ali

2. Ask a Question

A question hook is also an excellent choice to start your essay. Since the response is hidden between the lines, anyone can find it out only by reading your text. People are curious by their nature. When they see questions without answers, they need to find them. If you appeal to this trait, starting your essay with an exciting inquiry will make your readers want to know the answer. And that's exactly what you need.

Check the example of an intriguing question prepared by our essay writer to start your paper with:

Example of an intriguing question: “Did you know that there are more ancient pyramids in Peru than in Egypt?”

3. Make a Powerful Statement

A strong statement as an opening line is also a good hook for an essay. It's the right choice for your argumentative or persuasive paper. Such an assertion should be relevant to your thesis statement, which you put as the closing sentence in an introduction. Both such hook and thesis work perfectly well together and show the significance of your essay. No matter whether the readers agree or disagree with your statement, they will still be curious about how you support it.

For instance:  

Thesis statement: Since the rise of cyberbullying, parents need to supervise their children's smartphone usage and social network activity and notify the school authorities about any cyberbullying attempts.

4. Mention a Delusion

Another option of commonly used hook strategies is starting with delusional facts. If there is something topic-relevant that people still believe is true while it's false, describe it without hesitation. It's one of many great essay hooks that will intrigue your readers. Got no time for that? Please order essay, and a professional penman will do everything for you from scratch.

For example:  

Great essay hook: “Even though the Great Wall of China is enormous, you still cannot see it from space.”

5. Impress With Statistics

Another good hook is a fact supported by statistics. Such openings captivate your readers since they provide undeniable proofs of particular statements. It also helps to gain trust in further arguments you will be making in your paper. Include exciting and reliable data that will impress your audience with your subject expertise. Make sure that your statistical facts come from credible sources.

Here is an example for an essay about technology:  

Example of a hook for an essay about technology: “According to the 2021 Statista studies, an average American possesses more than 10 devices in their household”

6. Use Humor to Hook Your Reader

Humor is also one of the ways to hook a reader in an essay. People like to laugh as it makes them feel relaxed and less stressed. An anecdotal hook is something you don't want to use in a piece that discusses severe issues. It can be really out of place, and you will most likely confuse or cause dispraise among your readers. Instead, it suits best for personal narrative essays. By starting with something funny about a situation that occurred, you may let your readers know more about yourself. This way, you will make a good base for your further narration.

Here is an excellent example that can fit in a paper about nutrition:

Example a hook in a paper about nutrition: “There is only one thing I like more than being vegan. It's not being vegan”

7. Start With a Description

The last but not least of great hooks for essays is a descriptive one. Many people are visually oriented, so if you aim at attracting them to read your piece, describe a setting. Such scenes can be taken from real life or a fiction story. Let your readers envision themselves in that place for better effect. It will help draw parallels between your plot and their perception.

For example:  

Example of descriptive hook for essay


Now you know how to write a hook for an essay. Even though you need to captivate your readers with an eye-catching opening, it alone cannot guarantee you high grades. So always pay attention to other parts of your paper. Creating an outline and writing the whole essay first will surely help you come up with an excellent hook. Proofread your work, make sure it's clear from errors, craft a powerful opening, and you'll get handsomely rewarded with a good grade. Buy custom essay if you don't feel like doing your article at the moment.

Can't write a catchy hook for an essay?

If you still believe that writing hooks is not what you are meant to be, ask our professional academic writers for help. They do know how to attract their readers and create a flawless paper of any type. Every time you place an order with us, be sure to receive an assignment of highest quality!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How long should a hook be in an essay?

Its length can vary from 1 to a couple of sentences. It depends on the paper and hook type, writer's intentions, and the audience. 

2. Can a thesis statement be a hook?

Technically no. However, both hook and thesis serve a similar purpose of influencing the readers' concentration. First, you start an introduction with a catchy phrase to capture your reader's attention. Then you continue with writing a concise remark (thesis statement) that keeps it. 

Article posted on:Apr 26, 2022
Article updated on:May 13, 2024


Leave your comment here:
6/20/2022 7:55 AM
Hi there! I just wanted to say thank you. This article about how to write a catchy hook for an essay helped me with my assignment (for which I got A grade!).
6/22/2022 7:04 PM
It's very good news Lee,

When we see the success of our community, it makes us do more and more! Hope to hear about your achievements again! Good luck in your further academic pursuits!
7/4/2022 5:26 PM
Hi! I have to finish my expository essay by the end of this week, and I would like to know how to write a hook for an expository essay. Can you please give me a hint on how to do it?
7/4/2022 6:29 PM
Hi Joel,

Basically, the process of writing a hook for an expository essay is the same as for any other kind of essay. There is no difference between them. It means that you can freely use this guide for your expository essay writing and be sure it will fit all the requirements. Tell us about the results! Good luck!
7/4/2022 6:37 PM
I also recently had to write an expository essay, and I used this guide about how to write a hook sentence for an essay from StudyCrumb. It helped me a lot with my writing, thanks! I would also like to share a trick that helped me as well. When I started writing a hook for my essay, I tried to put myself in the shoes of a reader and imagine what would be interesting and catch the attention from his perspective. After doing this the ideas started to come to my mind and I knew exactly what to write in a hook of my essay.