Academic Writing Success

7 Sensational Essay Hooks That Grab Readers’ Attention

by Suzanne Davis | Jul 14, 2022 | Writing Essays and Papers | 12 comments

Do you want people to feel excited when they read your essay?

7 Sensational Essay Hooks Blog Photo

The secret is to get them interested in reading your essay by making the first part of your introduction intriguing. The best way to do that is by using attention-grabbing essay hooks.

So, what is a hook? It’s a piece of writing at the beginning of your essay that engages your reading audience. Usually, a hook is a sentence or group of sentences that draw people into reading your essay or research paper.  A hook sparks a person’s curiosity. You want whoever reads your essay to wonder what happens next. Hooks also make an introduction stand out (which raises your chance of getting a high grade on your essay). 

If you want to see all the elements of great introductions for research papers check my post, How to Write a Strong Introduction to a Research Paper at https://www.academicwritingsuccess.com/how-to-write-a-strong-introduction-to-a-research-paper/.

When you write essay hooks that make your rea ders curious, you’ve taken the first step toward making them fall in love with your writing. Let’s dive in and look at essay hooks that will elevate your writing style!

7 Types of Essay Hooks

7 Excellent Essay Hooks

Here are 7 writing hooks that make readers want to find out what you will say in the rest of your essay.

1.  The Interesting Question Hook

An interesting question hook is when you ask a question that relates to your essay or paper. And the only way a person can know the answer to that question is by reading your writing.

People are inquisitive. When we hear or read a question we want to know the answer. If we don’t have an answer then we need to find out.

So, when you start your essay with a question hook, this signals to your readers that if they keep reading you’ll give them the answer.

Here’s an example of an interesting question hook on the topic of succeeding in college:

What is the difference between successful college students and unsuccessful college students? 

The goal of this essay hook is to make you want to learn what students who succeed in college do, and what college students who don’t succeed in college do wrong. 

2.  The Strong Statement/Declaration Hook

A strong statement hook is a sentence that makes an assertive claim about your topic. It connects to the thesis statement and shows the importance of your essay or paper.

A strong statement is a great technique because it doesn’t matter if your reader agrees or disagrees with your statement. They will want to see how you support your statement.

This is an example of a strong statement on the topic of the vegan diet. 

Vegans are the healthiest group of people in the world.  

This statement either supports your point of view about the vegan diet, or it makes you want to argue against it (especially if you love meat). Either way, you are curious about what the writer says.

3.  The Fact/ Statistic Hook

Facts and statistics hook your reader because they give real information about a topic. You can impress your reader with your knowledge and evidence from the very beginning of your essay. But, you need to include facts that are accurate, interesting, and reliable. Evaluate your information and make sure it comes from a credible source. Some places to visit for statistics are The Pew Research Center   https://www.pewresearch.org/ , and The CIA World Fact Book, https://www.cia.gov/the-world-factbook/. 

Here’s an example of a factual hook about an essay on gun ownership in the United States.

Almost two-thirds of American adults at some point in their life lived in a home with at least one gun.

The Pew Research Center, “America’s Relationship With Guns: An In-Depth Look at the Attitudes and Experiences of US Adults”   http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2017/06/22/americas-complex-relationship-with-guns/  

4.  The Metaphor / Simile Hook

The metaphor/simile hook engages your readers because it makes them think about a topic in a different way.  Your audience wonders what you mean and how you compare a topic to something that seems unconnected.

A metaphor is a figure of speech that directly compares one thing to another, but these two things seem unrelated.  An example of a metaphor is: Her boyfriend is a rat.  The boyfriend is not really a rat, but he behaves like one.

 If your essay topic is on business blogging you could write the metaphor hook:

A business blog is a magnet pulling clients to a company. 

A simile is like a metaphor.  Both compare two unrelated things to each other, but a simile uses the words like or as to connect them. A simile is less strong than a comparison in a metaphor. An example of a simile is : Writing a research paper is like running a marathon when it’s 95 degrees Fahrenheit. 

A simile hook for the essay about business blogging could be: 

A business blog is like a magnet that pulls clients to a company.

5. The Story Hook

This is a hook where you begin with a short story or episode that relates to your topic.  Readers love stories, especially a well-written story that is memorable.  The key to a great story hook is making sure the story directly connects to your essay or paper topic. Your story can be personal or someone else’s story.

Here’s an example of a story hook for an essay about the differences between British and American English.   I used my own story about a trip to England.

I got off the train and pulled my luggage behind me.  A cab pulled up to the curb, and the driver got out.  He lifted my luggage and said, “Miss, I’m just going to put your stuff in the boot.”  I didn’t know what he meant until I saw him open the car’s trunk.  Then I realized the boot means car trunk.  I got in the cab, wondering how many other words would be different in England. 

You’ll see this sto ry hook is longer than other types of essay hooks.  That’s okay. Your hook can be longer, but it shouldn’t be a large part of your essay or paper. Compare the length of your hook to the length of the essay.

Also, consider your audience (especially an academic audience). Ask yourself, “Will a story hook be acceptable in this course?” If you’re unsure you can ask your teacher or professor or you could select a different type of hook.

6.  The Description Hook

This is a hook where a vivid description of a scene draws your readers into your writing. A good description hook will make your reader want to know what comes next in your writing.  It’s most popular in narrative essays, but you can use a description hook with any type of writing (yes even academic papers). But, like the story hook ask yourself, “Will this description hook be acceptable in this course?”

Here’s an example of a description hook for a personal narrative essay about saving a dog:

The dog howled in pain and limped along the side of the road. His leg was cut and blood streamed down his leg. 

Doesn’t this scene make you curious about what will happen to the dog?

7.  The Quotation Hook

This is a hook where you begin your essay with a quotation.  The quotation could be from a famous person, but it doesn’t have to be. You can quote anyone if it connects to what you’re writing about.

If you write an essay on the topic of education you could start

Nelson Mandela said, “ Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world .”

If you want to use a quotation for a hook, make sure you quote the words exactly.  Choose quotations where the words are striking, powerful, and/ or memorable.

Writing Challenge:  Write 2 Essay Hooks

Essay hooks are a great way to intrigue all your readers.  Select your favorite 2 types of essay hooks.  Then write a hook for each kind you choose. Comment below and share your favorite one! 

Have fun and be creative.

Photo by  Bram Naus  on  Unsplash

I find that switching it up makes my content better. My favorite is to start with a question or a strong statement. I love this infographic. Well done!

Thanks Joanne! Question and strong statement hooks are great for getting readers to wonder what’s in your essay. I’m so glad you liked the infographic.

This is a great article, showing the variety of openings you can use in writing. Thank you for the tips!

I’m glad you liked it. I think hooks are great for writing.

[…] For more information about essay hooks see-https://www.academicwritingsuccess.com/7-sensational-types-of-essay-hooks/ […]

Very good blog! Do you have any recommendations for aspiring writers? I’m hoping to start my own site soon but I’m a little lost on everything.

Would you recommend starting with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid option? There are so many options out there that I’m totally overwhelmed ..

Any suggestions? Many thanks!

Hi Cindy, Those are great questions about blogging. I think the beginning point with starting a blog is determining your niche/focus, goals and your ideal readers. The next piece of advice is to really learn the style of writing blog posts. It’s a craft, so you should really start with a good grasp of the formatting, style, and techniques, etc. Since I don’t know your blog’s focus I can’t offer you more specific advice.

If you can afford it, I suggest paying for a domain name and hosting. There are free ones like WordPress.com etc. These will get you started, but if you want to use your blog for a business I really recommend starting with a paid option. I hope this helps you. Good luck blogging!

Thank you for this informative Eda’ya. My favorite hooks are question, strong statement and the fact. I think these are the best for an academic paper. Your infographic is excellent and memorable. Thank you! ??

Mehmet, Those are all great hooks! I think they would each be a great way to begin an academic paper too. I’m glad the infographic is useful to you. Thank you for the compliment.

These are great. I’ll have to file this away for my next writing student (and my next blog post!). For research papers, I used to use the fact/statistic hook a lot.

Beth, I’m glad you liked these essay hooks. I like the fact/statistic hook a lot too, and you’re right it is a great one for research papers.

I like question hooks & metaphoric ones…

I need to write to essays for tomorrow at English (preparing for Baccalaureate) & I’ll choose “success is not about luck” & “the importance of music in our lives” …

For the first one I’ll choose the first type of hook (for me it’s the easiest): “How can you be sure that when it comes to success, luck isn’t so important” or sth like this.

But for the second essay I’ll choose a metaphoric hook “music is the spot of light who makes shine in gray tones” or sth like this.

For the first one I was also thinking about sth statistically but idk not a kind of statistics about luck help in success or sth like this…

Ik, you can’t give me advices till tomorrow but I’ll be OK. Thx for this gorgeous inform. God bless you. All the best!

I think those are 2 great hooks to use with those essays. I love the metaphoric hook you came up with–it’s beautiful. I hope you do well with your essays. Good luck!

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20 Compelling Hook Examples for Essays

hook examples for essays

The key to writing a great hook begins with brainstorming a compelling opening statement or question that will capture the attention and interest of readers. No matter what the essay topic is, it’s possible to craft a compelling hook. Use these hook sentence examples to get some ideas.

10 Hook Sentence Examples

The most important job of a hook is to entice readers to want to read your essay, so it is often the first sentence in your introduction.

These hooks make an assertion intended to engage readers so they’ll want to continue reading to find out what you have to say. Whether a reader’s first thought is to agree with the hook or to question the content of the hook, the person will want to learn more. It’s up to you to write an essay that effectively supports your assertions.

10 Hook Question Examples

Sometimes the best hook for an essay is a question rather than a sentence. What better way to entice readers to want to see what you have to say?

The key to writing an effective hook in the form of a question lies with considering what you can ask that will make readers want to learn more. It can be helpful to relate your topic to surprising statistics, current events or other subject matter that your audience members are likely to feel strongly about. Your goal should be to write a question that will draw readers in so they want to continue reading to discover what else you have to say.

Properly Source Your Assertions

While the purpose of a hook is to draw in readers, you should only do so with accurate information. Be sure there is a factual basis for any assertions you make or statistics you cite . Include credible sources backing up such information in the body of your essay.

Engage Readers

The hook you use to start your essay has to be specific to the subject matter and audience. Now that you have reviewed examples of hooks, spend some time learning how to write a great hook . What you learn will help you master strategies to engage readers .

Preparing to Write an Effective Essay

Once you’ve mastered the art of crafting an effective hook, turn your attention to what’s involved in creating a strong introduction paragraph . You may also want to review some essay examples before you begin writing your own.

Essay Writing Guide

Hook Examples

Last updated on: Feb 8, 2023

Hook Examples: How to Start Your Essay Effectively

By: Nova A.

Reviewed By: Jacklyn H.

Published on: Feb 19, 2019

Hook Examples

Tired of getting poor grades on your high school or college essays?

Not sure how to make your writing interesting enough for the professor?

Students are always busy with essays, assignments, and projects on a regular basis. Whether they're in school or college, students are always looking for new ways to get their point across.

One way that's becoming increasingly popular is using hooks. Hooks are attention grabbing phrases that prompt the reader into further reading.

They intrigue them enough to stay interested in what you have to say next. Essay writing  is based on how well you explain your main points and engage the readers.

They can be placed anywhere in your essay. But typically they come at the beginning of sentences or paragraphs.

Check out the essay hook examples discussed in this blog to solve all your concerns.

Hook Examples

On this Page

What is an Essay Hook?

Imagine this; you are at a bookstore looking for interesting books to buy. How will you decide which one to go for?

You skim through the introduction if it catches your attention, you decide to buy it. Even if the book was well-written, if the introduction was dull, you wouldn’t want to continue reading it.

Similarly, when your professor is reading your essay, they judge it based on the introduction. If the introduction fails to impress them, they are less likely to keep reading it further. Even if they do decide to give it a quick read, they wouldn't find it too interesting.

To combat this issue, writers make use of a term called a “hook.” A hook sentence is the opening sentence of your essay. And it is written with the intention of grabbing the reader's attention.

An effective essay hook has the ability to keep the reader interested and motivate them to finish reading the entire essay.

It is better to start your essay with a hook. It provides an idea about your overall topic and the questions that are addressed.

It is important to have an interesting opening statement. And it is important for the rest of the text to be engaging as well. Here is a complete guide to describe  how to start an essay  to keep your audience engaged.

In this article, we are going to address the basics of writing a hook and the different types of hooks.

How to Write a Hook?

The opening lines of an essay is your hook, which acts as an attention grabber. Remember that the hook statement is part of your essay introduction. It isn’t written to replace the introduction itself.

An introduction consists of a hook followed by a thesis statement. A hook is written to attract the reader. The purpose of a thesis statement is to explain the main points of the essay. To learn more about it, head on to this detailed blog of writing a  thesis statement .

In order to write a good hook, you must be aware of the following aspects:

Remember, that the hook should be related to the main topic or idea of the piece of writing.

When you write essays, research papers, or other academic papers you can use different types of hooks relevant to your requirements. Some of the different attention grabbing hooks are:

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Hook Sentence Examples

To give you a better understanding of the different types of essay hooks, we will be discussing essay hook examples.

Question Hook

Starting your essay by asking a thought-provoking question can be a good way to engage the reader. Ask your reader a question that they can visualize. However, make sure to keep your questions relevant to the reader's interest. Avoid generalized, and yes or no questions.

Rhetorical questions make up good hooks.

“How are successful college students different from unsuccessful college students?”

“What is the purpose of our existence?”

“Have you ever wondered whether Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters would have been still together if he didn't die of cancer?”

Quotation Hook

A quotation from a famous person is used to open an essay to attract the reader's attention. However, the quote needs to be relevant to your topic and must come from a credible source. To remove any confusion that the reader might have it is best to explain the meaning of the quote later.

When writing about Education, you can use the quote by Nelson Mandela:

“Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.”

If your topic is related to hard work and making your own destiny, you can start by quoting Michael Jordan.

“Some people want it to happen; some wish it would happen; others make it happen.”

And further, explain how he talks about people who dream for a certain thing. But they never achieve it because they don’t put in the efforts. Simply wishing, dreaming and praying isn’t enough. It is only those dreamers who take it upon themselves to work hard to make it as a professional basketball player.

Statistic Hook

Here you use statistical data such as numbers and figures, percentages, etc. to hook the reader. This is mostly used in informative writing to provide the reader with new and interesting facts. It is important to mention the source.

Here is an argumentative essay hook example, if you're writing about gun laws. You can use the following statistics:

“Reports have shown that almost two-thirds of adults in the United States of America have lived in a place with at least one gun, at some point of their life.”

Another persuasive essay hook example about people's psychology and lying is mentioned below:

“It is noted by Allison Komet from the Psychology Today magazine that people lie in every one out of five conversations that last for at least 10 minutes.”

Anecdotal Hook

An anecdote is a short story relevant to the essay topic, illustrated to gain the reader’s attention. This story can be derived from a personal experience or your imagination. Mostly, an anecdote is humorous; it makes the reader laugh and leaves them wanting to read more.

It is mostly used when writing narrative or descriptive essays.

If you are a non-English speaker and call the support department or the helpline and hear:

“If you want instructions in English, press 1. If you don't understand English, press 2.”

“ An elderly person came to buy a TV, asked the shopkeeper if they had colored TVs. When told that they are available, he asked to purchase a purple one.” 

Personal Story

Starting with a personal story is the right way to go when writing a personal narrative or admissions essay for College.

There is no such rule that the story has to be yours. You can share your friends' story or someone you know of.

Remember that such hooks aren't suitable when writing a more formal or argumentative piece of writing.

“My father was in the Navy; I basically grew up on a cruise. As a young boy, I saw things beyond anyone's imagination. On April 15, 2001…”

In the next section we will be discussing hook examples for different kinds of essays.

Argumentative Essay Hook Examples

The opening paragraph of an argumentative essay should be similar to the opening statement of a trial. Just as a lawyer presents his point with a logical system, you must do the same in your essay.

For example, you are writing about the adverse effects of smoking, and arguing that all public places should be turned into no smoking zones. For such essays, good hook examples will be statistical such as:

“According to the World Health Organization consumption of tobacco kills about five million people every year, which makes it more than the death rate from HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria altogether.”

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Persuasive Essay Hook Examples

The main idea or aim for writing a persuasive essay is to convince and persuade the reader to do something. It is also written to change their beliefs and agree with your point of view.

Hook sentences for such essays are a shocking revelation that the reader is curious to learn more about.

“On average each year, humans release 38.2 billion tons of carbon dioxide approximately. Due to this, the level of carbon dioxide has increased significantly, more than it has been in centuries. If you think climate change is nothing to worry about then you are highly mistaken.”

Narrative Essay Hook Examples

Simply put, a narrative essay is just like a story. In other types of essays you need to pick a side, argue and prove your point with the help of evidence. A narrative essay gives you a freehand to tell your story however you may please.

It can be a story inspired by your life, something you may have experienced. If you feel like it isn’t exciting enough you can always transform it using your imagination.

Examples of a hook sentence for a narrative essay can be something like:

“I was riding the bus to school; the other kids were making fun of me thinking I couldn’t understand them. “Why are his eyes like that?” “His face is funny.” A Chinese kid in America is probably like a zoo animal.”

These were some catchy hook examples just to give you an idea. You can make use of any one of these types according to your paper and its requirements. The key to making your essay stand out from the rest is to have a strong introduction.

While it is the major part, there’s more that goes into writing a good essay. Continue reading and you can find the basics guidelines of essay writing.

If you are still unable to come up with an exciting hook, you can always ask our professional essay writer online for help. The expert essay writers at 5StarEssays.com  are just a click away. Reach out to them today and have an engaging opening for your essay.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a visual hook.

The visual hook is a scene that captures the audience's interest by encapsulating something about the movie. It usually occurs around 15 minutes into it, and can be found in marketing or reviews of movies.

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As a Digital Content Strategist, Nova Allison has eight years of experience in writing both technical and scientific content. With a focus on developing online content plans that engage audiences, Nova strives to write pieces that are not only informative but captivating as well.

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Top 100 Essay Hook Examples

Introduction.

Teacher: “I will never forgive you for the essay you submitted.”

Student: “What’s wrong with it? I can see you gave me an A already.”

Teacher: “My dinner got burned because I just couldn’t get myself to stop reading it.”

Do you get the clue?

Polish your essay introduction if you want to wow your teacher. Add something shocking, funny, or interesting.

Right from the start, build an emotional connection.  An essay hook should be your reader’s bait.

You can write persuasive essay hooks in several ways.

What is an Essay Hook?

You will use a hook when you want to encourage or intimidate your audience in reading your essays.

A hook is the first sentence that appears in your introductory paragraph. Its average length is 3-7 sentences, but it depends on the essay topic.

The hook will show your readers that the content of the essay is worth reading.  Some writers will even make the hook go up to several pages.

Though, it would be best if you kept it as a sentence or a short paragraph.

Remember, the hook does not replace is not an essay introduction. It is an opening line for an introduction.

The essential components of the introduction of an essay are the thesis statement and the hook.

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Writing a Good Essay Hook

To write a good essay hook, you need to follow these steps:

Let us discuss each in detail.

Understand the Literary Work

Have in mind a clear vision of the literary work for your essay. You will need to describe the techniques used in supporting the arguments of the given essay type.

Craft an Outline

Have an outline to organize your information and highlight the relevant points to your essay.

Know Your Audience

Choose how you intend to develop your work and know your target audience. Use simple language if you are targeting children. If it is for professionals, use appropriate language.

Know Your Writing Intent

Your choice of the hook should fit your essay. Know the purpose of the research paper you want to write. If you have an interesting essay topic choice, your hook should be funny.

Have a normal hook if you want to write a conference paper.

Why You Need a Good Essay Hook

Types of Hook Sentences

Different types of hooks exist for different kinds of papers, such as research papers and essays.

1.     Question Hook

When you want to grab your audience’s attention, you can ask an intriguing question that they have an interest in answering.

Question hook examples include:

Think about what the reader would be eager to learn or what they are interested in before posing the question.

Do not make the questions Yes or No or generalized. Tailor them to fit your reader’s needs. Making use of rhetoric is always an excellent way to grab the reader’s attention.

2.     Anecdote

We live lives full of strange, interesting, or funny happenings. So, why not attract the attention of your reader using such stories?

An anecdote may be something you have imagined or a personal story. Ensure the story remains relevant to your essay topic.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

Examples of an anecdote hook:

Ideally, an anecdote makes the reader laugh and gives them more interest in reading your essay further.

3.     Quotes

You can use quotes from famous people to explain the relevance of your essay topic . Ensure you elaborate the quote for the reader’s understanding.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

4.     Statistical Facts

A statistical hook works when you intend to provide your reader with information. These facts are, in most cases, used in informative or process essays.

Statistical facts are also quotes from famous people, only that, in this case, they present a percentage, number, or figure.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

5.     Personal Story

When writing a college application essay or a narrative essay , it is best to start it with a short personal story.

It could be something that happened to a relative or a friend. It doesn’t have to be something you have experienced firsthand.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

6.     Description Hook

When writing your essay, you will want to get the reader’s attention.  A description hook describes a scene vividly to the readers to want to read more and more.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

It is in most cases used in narrative essays but can be used with other types of essays .

7.     Simile/Metaphor Hook

A simile/metaphor gives your readers a different way to look at an essay topic. A metaphor makes a comparison between two unrelated things.

An example would be:

“I have a five-year-old baby – my fashion business was founded in 2017.”

8.     Literary Quotes

Literary quotes are best in a book review. Keep in mind that they may not be appropriate for use with persuasive and expository essays.

An example of a literary quote:

You can use literary quotes in a compare & contrast essay in the works of William Shakespeare: “Less than kind and a little more kin” (Hamlet, Act 2, and Scene 2)

9.     Common Misconception

It shows your reader that what they believe in may not be accurate. Then, make a connection with your thesis statement. This will force the reader to study further because this hook example aims at creating a disturbance.

“Fortune cookies aren’t Chinese,” “The Buddha wasn’t fat.”

Use this type of hook to depict that sometimes things are not what they seem to be. They are most appropriate for reflection or explanation essays.

10.  Scenes

In most cases, people can efficiently process and remember visual information.  As human beings, we quickly transform words into pictures in minds. Scenes are, in most cases, used in descriptive or narrative essays.

“Imagine sitting by the fire sipping some wine with the love of your life by your side.”

11.  Thesis Statement

A different way to begin your introduction without using the tricks is to go straight to the main statement. You don’t need to put a lot into just a couple of sentences.

Essay Hook Examples

Below are examples of essay hooks used in writing the different types of essays:

1.     Argumentative Essay Hook Examples

In an argumentative essay , the opening paragraph should be similar to that of a trial. You are supposed to claim persuasively and logically. This comes after you have provided some background information, just like a lawyer begins by presenting an issue.

For example, when arguing that all public places should be turned into no-smoking zones because of the adverse smoking effects, use an excellent statistical hook as follows:

“According to the World Health Organization, tobacco consumption kills more than 5 million people yearly. This makes the death rate more than would be from Malaria, HIV/AIDS, and TB combined.”

You may also want to check argumentative essay topics

2.     Persuasive Essay Hook Examples

A persuasive essay persuades the reader to take a specific action or agree with you by changing their beliefs.

The hook sentence in this essay will create curiosity in the reader by making a shocking revelation or stating statistics.

For instance, you can choose to write about the seriousness of the climate change issue and its threat to the world. Start your essay by giving facts concerning the atmosphere:

“On average each year, the human population emits approximately 39.2 billion tons of carbon dioxide. More than it has been in the past centuries, the carbon dioxide levels have significantly increased. You are highly mistaken if you think there’s no need to worry about climate change.”

3.     Narrative Hook Examples

A narrative essay is more like a story. It gives you the freedom to tell your story just the way you want. This is unlike other types of essays where you need to argue and choose a side.

“I am not sure whether it is just something that became solid over time or it is a real memory. I can’t tell whether at one point my neighbour tried to murder me.”

You can also check comprehensive narrative essay topics !

4.     Examples of Hooks in Speeches

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

You may also want to check speech attention grabbers

5.     Examples of Hooks in Literature

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

How to Choose a Good Hook

You might be wondering what it takes to choose the right hook. There exists no single formula in choosing the best hook for your essay.

That said, you will need to keep the following in mind when choosing your hook:

Knowing your audience and the type of essay you intend to write plays an essential role in selecting the hook.

So, it is crucial to identify the appropriate hook for your essay and audience.

Final Word – Get High-Quality Essay from Experts

We have provided you with the ultimate essay writing guide to create the best introduction to your essay. You may still find it to be challenging to grab the reader’s attention in your introductory line.

Thus, remember that we will provide you with the ultimate solution for all your essay writing problems.

Take advantage of our professional essay writing service if you find it challenging to develop a relevant hook; just click the green button below!

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List of Amazing Essay Hook Examples

Table of Contents

Essays are usually written to educate, persuade and entertain the audience. But in essay writing, the real challenge lies in attracting the target readers inside the essay and making them read the entire content. Currently, are you looking for effective ways to invite the readers to learn about your essay topic? If yes, then formulating an engaging introduction is the only way. The essay introduction is the opening paragraph of an essay where your readers decide whether to continue reading or not. In order to impress the audience, beginning the essay introduction with a hook sentence is the best way. The essay hook is the starting sentence in the essay introduction that gives life to your work.

Essay Hook Examples

Here, in detail, let us learn about essay hooks and their types. Also, for your better understanding, we have explained how to write a catchy essay hook and have suggested some interesting essay hook examples.

Keep on reading this blog post to know more about essay hooks.

What is an Essay Hook?

An effective essay hook is an essay introduction’s opening sentence designed to grab readers’ interest. The hook can be utilized virtually in any type of essay without restriction. However, keep in mind that the hook is neither an introduction nor a substitute for one. It is usually written as a stand-alone sentence to spice up the introduction and break up the monotony.

Never confuse an introduction with a hook. The introduction of an essay includes the topic’s background information and a thesis statement in addition to the hook. The majority of the time, it appears in the essay’s opening sentence. The information about the topic and the thesis statement can be added after you have introduced the essay with a hook in the first paragraph.

A hook generally does not have a predetermined length. Hooks for essays can also be written as sentences or short paragraphs. However, depending on the topic of the essay, the average length of an essay hook can range anywhere from three to seven sentences. When writing an essay hook, make it interesting, intriguing, or impressive to the readers. It should primarily pique readers’ interest and naturally encourage them to read the entire article.

Keep in mind that the only effective tool for making your essay introduction stand out from the crowd and engage readers is the essay hook. There are a number of different kinds of essay hooks that can be used, especially when writing an engaging introduction. Therefore, use any essay hooks that are appropriate for your type of essay. If your hook catches the interest of your readers, then it is said to be effective.

The Purpose of an Essay Hook

The reasons why the hook is included as the essay introduction’s opening sentence are as follows:

Types of Essay Hook

As said earlier, the essay hooks are of different types. Here, let us learn about some common types of essay hooks that can be used for writing academic essays and research papers with examples.

Essay Hook Examples

Question Hook

Anecdotal hook, quotation hook, fact/ statistical hook, description hook, metaphor/simile hook, statement hook, common misconception.

It is a hook type in which as a writer you can draw your reader’s attention towards your essay by asking a rhetorical question to them. The question hook is useful because to find answers to your topic question, the readers will have to read the entire essay.

Usually, when you throw a thought-provoking question at the beginning of an essay, then almost everyone will take attempt to look for answers in your essay. So, in this way, you can engage your readers and make them read your whole work.

But before preparing your question hook, search and find your reader’s interest and the topic they would love to learn about. If you use a question hook matching your reader’s interest, then you can easily grab your reader’s attention.

For a question hook, using a rhetorical question is the best way to engage the readers. Never use generalized questions or simple ‘yes or no’ questions because it won’t make your readers think about it.

Question Hook Examples

An anecdote is a short story or a product of your imagination. When writing an essay introduction, you can use an anecdote that is relevant to your essay topic as a hook to attract your target readers.

Basically, an anecdote is a funny statement. So, using the anecdotal hook in your essay would make your readers laugh and will also tempt them to read further. For writing an anecdotal hook, you can use your personal story or rely on any imaginative stories.

The anecdotal hook is predominantly used when writing descriptive essays or narrative essays.

Anecdotal Hook Examples

A quotation hook is a type of essay hook in which as a writer you can use a quote from a famous person to attract your reader’s attention. It is one of the most popular essay hooks that are widely used in many kinds of academic essays.

If you are in plan to use a quotation hook in your essay introduction, then make sure to refer to credible sources and pick a powerful quote that is relevant to your essay topic. In case, you have used a quotation hook in your work, then for a better understanding of your readers, give an explanation to the quote later in your essay.

Also, at the time you use quotation hooks in your essay introduction, remember to quote the exact words. Paraphrased quotes will not be treated as a quotation hook.

Quotation Hook Examples

For an essay introduction, you can use facts and statistics as a hook. In general, facts and statistics will provide actual and accurate information about an essay topic. Therefore, using them as an essay hook would be helpful for you to motivate your readers and make them read your essay.

Note that, if you use facts or statistical hook in your essay, then definitely your target audience will be impressed by your knowledge and the information that you have provided them. So, make sure to use this type of hook in process or informative essays and research papers. Also, try to add a statistical hook in academic essays where factual information is required.

The statistical data you present as a hook can be in the form of numbers, figures, or percentages. But when you use any statistics or facts as a hook, remember to mention the source. Avoid frequently discussed statistics that your readers are aware of. Give preference to new and unknown interesting facts relevant to the essay topic.

Fact/ Statistical Hook Examples

It is a type of essay hook in which an incident, a short story, or a personal story relevant to the essay topic can be presented. Typically, many readers love listening to exciting stories. So, beginning an essay with a story hook is one of the best tricks to hold the reader’s attention and make them read the whole essay.

Whenever you write a story hook, make sure to keep your target audience in mind because some readers will not like stories related to the essay topic.

You can use story hooks when writing a college application essay or a narrative essay. Remember, it is not necessary to share your own experience as a story hook. You can use the real stories of your relative or a friend too.

On the whole, the story hook you write should be simple, short, and interesting. Therefore, avoid elaborating on the story. Also, never use this type of hook in a formal or argumentative piece of writing.

Story Hook Examples

It is an essay hook type in which a vivid description of an event, a scene, or a character is presented to pull the reader’s attention toward an essay.

Basically, when you give a satisfactory explanation related to the topic, the readers will quickly get impressed and they will develop their interest to read the entire essay. So, based on your essay topic and essay type, you can use a catchy description hook in the introductory paragraph of any essay type. But mostly, the description hooks are used in narrative essays.

Description Hook Examples

If you want to showcase an essay topic to your readers in a different way, then you can very well use a metaphor or simile hook in your essay introduction. This hook type is appropriate for informal writing and can also be used in formal writing too.

Note that, using a metaphor or simile hook is one of the best ways to keep hold of your reader’s attention. Because, when you use a simile or metaphor hook in your essay introduction, the majority of your readers will start exploring the meaning and content of your hook and in turn will stay connected with the essay.

Metaphor/Simile Hook Examples

For opening an essay, you can create a hook in the form of a simple and strong statement. Usually, a powerful statement hook may shock the readers at first. But they will keep on reading your work to know how you have planned to back up your claims.

It is one of the best hook types that are extensively used in serious and formal writings. Even if your readers agree or disagree with your statement hook, out of curiosity they will read further to understand your point of view.

Statement Hook Examples

In general, people are more visually-oriented. So, depending on your essay type, you can draw a scene as a hook to help your readers visualize a clear picture in their minds. The scenes are widely used in descriptive as well as narrative essays.

Scenes Examples

You can start your essay introduction with a statement about a popularly accepted truth that is false. Using the misconceptions as a hook will intrigue your audience and motivate them to read your essay further.

Common Misconception Examples

How to Write an Essay Hook

How to Write an Essay Hook?

Writing an essay hook is a tedious process that is extremely challenging. Similar to essay topic selection, you need to invest more time and effort to identify a good essay topic. Most importantly, the essay hook you prepare should captivate your readers, and match your essay topic or idea.

Remember, when it comes to selecting an essay hook, you need to concentrate on more factors like essay type, target audience, etc. In general, there are many essay hook types available. So, based on your essay, research paper, or any other academic paper writing requirements, you can select and use any essay hook or attention grabbers in your introduction section.

Currently, do you want to write a thought-provoking hook for your academic essay introduction? If yes, then make sure to keep the following tips in mind.

Find the kind of literary work

First, have a clear idea about the literary work you have decided on for your paper. Mainly, here, you should describe what your essay type demands and what type of techniques you need to prove the main arguments in your essay. Finally, you should pick an essay hook depending on that.

Prepare an outline

To get an idea about how to organize the information in a better way and which points need to be highlighted, create an outline. Then, based on the prepared outline relevant to the topic, find an essay hook that has the power to grab the attention of the readers.

Identify to whom you are writing

Search and find the target audience for your essay. Once you have found out the target audience group, try to write a great essay hook matching the interest of your target audience. Remember, the essay hook statement you prepare should be according to your target audience and the essay topic. If your target audience is children, then use simple language. But when writing for professionals, take the specific language into consideration.

Know the reason for writing your essay

The hook statement you create should be relevant to the purpose of your essay. So, get to know the real reason behind writing that essay and then select a hook that fits your academic paper. You can use funny hooks for informal writing. But for a research paper or conference paper, your hook statement should be more formal.

Essay Hook Examples for Different Essay Types

Basically, academic essays are classified into different types. In particular, when writing the essay introduction, you can’t use one particular type of essay hook for all the essay types. Based on your essay type, purpose, and writing requirements, you need to choose an appropriate essay hook.

Say, for example, if your essay is scientific, then you can very well use an unknown fact as a hook to spike your reader’s interest. On the other hand, it is not a good idea to start an essay introduction with a story in professional essay types.

So, it is significant to take the essay type into account, while you are writing an essay hook.

For your better understanding, here we have explained how to use essay hooks for different types of essays with examples.

Argumentative Essay Hook

In an argumentative essay, the introductory paragraph should be similar to a trial. So, when writing the argumentative essay introduction, the hook statement should be logical. For instance, suitable to your essay topic, you can use any statement, or fact as an essay hook in the essay types that are argumentative.

Argumentative Essay Hook Examples

Narrative Essay Hook

A narrative essay is more like a story. When it comes to writing a narrative essay, you have the freedom to narrate the story on your own. But it is not the case with other essay types where you have to argue and prove your point with valid evidence.

As a narrative essay is completely creative and less formal, while writing a narrative essay introduction you can very well use a story hook, anecdotal hook, scenes, or description hook based on your essay topic.

Narrative Essay Hook Examples

Persuasive Essay Hook

The ultimate aim of a persuasive essay is to persuade the readers or convince them to accept your arguments on an essay topic. So, when writing a persuasive essay, in order to hold the reader’s attention, you should use a shocking revelation or statistics as a hook statement.

Persuasive Essay Hook Examples

Final Words

We hope you are now clear on how to write a catchy essay hook. If you have any doubts, then have a look at the essay hook examples suggested above, it would give you an idea of how to use the attention grabbers in your essay introduction.

In case, you need help writing an essay hook, then reach out to us. We have professional essay writers to prepare a hook statement for almost all kinds of essays, research papers, and academic papers.

Just send your requirements to us through the order form. We will work as per your requirements and will send you the necessary documents on time at an affordable price.

Are looking for online essay help ? Do you need assistance to write a top-notch hook statement for your academic paper introduction? Call us now! We will provide a quick fix for all kinds of academic paper writing issues you experience.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

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Top 100 Compelling Essay Hook Examples

Apr 21, 2022 | 0 comments

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

Apr 21, 2022 | Blog | 0 comments

The article will discuss essay hook examples and how they are used in essays.

Hook statements are used in essays to draw readers’ attention and engage them. A hook is a catchy statement or question that makes the reader think and sets up an expectation for the essay to follow. It creates an interest in the topic of your essay, making your main points more interesting.

The essay hook is not just great lead-ins, it is a critical part of the essay, and every essay needs one.

The main purpose of a good hook is to grab the reader’s attention and make them want to read further. There are many ways to accomplish this goal, but one method often works is creating a surprising statement. The more surprising or intriguing the statement is, the better chance you have of getting your reader interested in learning more. A great hook will also set up a question for your readers that they want to be answered – so they will continue reading to find out what it is.

Different Types of Hooks

There are different hooks that you can use depending on what you’re writing. The more good essay hooks you use, the mor is that your reader will stay interested.

Here is a list of 100 essay hook examples. I have compiled this list below to include all the most common examples of each type of hook

1.    Question Hook

A question hook is a sentence at the beginning of a paragraph that makes the reader want to keep reading in order to find the answer to the question. The question can be implied, or it can be stated directly.

The most common form of question hooks is rhetorical questions. Rhetorical questions are simply asked and not answered; they are designed to encourage the reader to think about an issue and come up with his or her own answer. For example: “Why do we laugh at jokes?” “Is it immoral to eat meat?”

Another way to use a question hook is to combine it with an anecdote, as in this example: “When I was growing up my mother often told me that it was rude to stare, but now that I am older I have noticed that many situations call for staring…”

Sometimes, instead of phrasing a statement as a question, you can simply ask your audience if they agree.

Interesting question hook examples include:

2.    Anecdote Hook

One of the best ways to hook your readers is through a short anecdote or a short story. But if you are not an experienced writer, it is also one of the most difficult things to write. Even professional writers have a hard time writing an effective anecdote hook, especially if they are writing on a topic that is new to them or if they need to crank out content quickly.

The good news is that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to writing an anecdote hook. Just take a look at this list of anecdote hooks examples and pick one that will be appropriate for your essay topic.

3.    Quotes

You can begin your paper with an interesting quotation or phrase. The main thing is to make sure that the quote will have a positive impact on your work. Quotation hooks sometimes seem like clichés; however, they can be used effectively if the author says something new about the topic.

Examples of quotation hook:

4.    Statistical Facts

Statistics are everywhere, but people often don’t realize it until they’re faced with a particular problem. This is why statistics hooks are so powerful. They provide relevance to your reader by describing a situation everyone is familiar with. It’s easy to relate to one of these situations since it’s something you’ve probably seen or had to happen in your own life.

A statistics hook will give you an opening paragraph that will grab the attention of your reader and make him or her want to read more of your essay.

Examples of statistics hook include:

1. “According to the World Health Organization consumption of tobacco kills about five million people every year, which makes it more than the death rate from HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria altogether.”

2. “Statistics show that on average Facebook users have 155 friends, but will only ask 4 of them for help in case of a crisis.”

3. “Reports have shown that almost two-thirds of adults in the United States of America have lived in a place with at least one gun, at some point of their life.”

4. “It is noted by Allison Komet from the Psychology Today magazine that people lie in every one out of five conversations that last for at least 10 minutes.”

5.      Cigarettes are the primary cause of cancer.

6.      Fifty percent of marriages end up in divorce. (If the fact is undisputed and widely known and accepted, you do not have to cite a source.)

7. “Seventy-two percent of Canadians have been directly related to a person, or persons, killed during WWII” (Source to follow here).

8.      Around 25% of dreams blind people have are nightmares compared to only 6% of nightmares others have.

9.      According to the National Soft Drink Association, the annual consumption of soda by U.S. citizens is 600 cans.

10.   Even though we live in the 21st century, there still are around 3 billion people living in poverty.

11. “The average iceberg weighs over 100,000 metric tons.”

Essay Hook Examples

The following are examples of essay hooks used in writing the different types of essays .

  1.    Argumentative Essay Hook Examples

An argumentative essay should have a similar opening paragraph to a trial. You’re trying to persuade and logically convince your reader as you present some background information, just like a lawyer presents the issue in a trial.

For example, when arguing against smoking in public places, use an excellent statistical hook like this:

“According to the World Health Organization, tobacco consumption kills more than 5 million people yearly. This makes the death rate more than would be from Malaria, HIV/AIDS, and TB combined.”

2.    Persuasive Essay Hook Examples

Persuasive essays are types of essays that describe a particular subject and provide a strong, logical argument for your position on that subject. Persuasive essay hooks are used to grab the reader’s attention right away. Here are some examples:

1. “I’m the youngest person ever to do this.”

3. “Some people love me, but most people hate me.”

4. “Here is a new way of looking at this problem.”

5. “You’re not going to believe this, but…”

6. “If you do something everyone else thinks is crazy, you will achieve success.”

7. “Everyone says this is impossible, but I will prove them wrong.”

8. “Things were bad for me until I learned about … .”

9. “The experts say this will never work, but I want to show them that they’re wrong.”

10. “This might sound crazy, but what if…”

11. “Everyone knows this is true, even though it isn’t true at all!”*

3.    Narrative Essay Hook Examples

Narrative hooks are the tools writers use to capture their readers’ attention. If you’re looking to start writing your story, try using the following essay hooks:

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Essay Hooks That Grab Attention (Formula For Better Grades)

Meredith Sell

Have you ever read a line that caught your attention so fast, you didn’t look up until five paragraphs later? Props to whoever wrote it — they mastered the attention-grabbing hook.

For many writers, hooks (or ledes, as they’re referred to by journalists) are both tantalizing and infuriating. Out in the wild, we spot first lines that are startling and mind-bending and stoke our curiosity. But then we sit to write our own and all we can think of is “once upon a time” or “a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away” or, worse, “imagine yourself…”

‍ ‍ The truth is: every piece of writing can’t start with an explosion or a chase scene. Especially if you’re writing an academic essay or other piece of nonfiction that needs to stick with the facts. But there are better ways to start your essay than the sleepy “A recent study observed 300 chimpanzees in 50 habitats over seven years. This is what it found.”

These are just a couple questions we’ll answer in this article. 

But first, let’s talk about what you need to know before attempting to write that opening sentence.

Try our FREE essay hook generator > Try our FREE essay hook generator >

essay hooks

What to Know About Your Essay (and Topic) Before You Write the Hook

Whether you’re writing a research paper on economics, an argumentative essay for your college composition class, or a personal essay for that blog you’ve been plotting, there are a few things you need to nail down before you settle on a first line.

1. Gain In-Depth Knowledge of Your topic

1. Gain In-Depth Knowledge of Your topic

Name one thing under the sun. You could write an essay about it.

Before you actually write your essay, though, you need to know your topic — not just in name, but in-depth. You don't have to be a subject matter expert , but you do have to research.

Your research will help you narrow your focus, build an argument, and uncover the facts to shape the flow of thought throughout your piece. What you learn in the research stage should determine how you structure your essay — and should guide your choice of hook.

‍ Did you uncover a shocking fact? A compelling anecdote? An interesting quote? Any of those things could be your hook.

‍ Take action: When you’ve finished your research, go through your notes and think through your essay. Mark or make a list of anything you learned that’s compelling enough to be a good lead. Then, filter that list through your essay genre.

2. Type of essay

2. Type of essay

In academic settings, there are generally three kinds of essays:

‍ The type of essay you’re writing is key to choosing the best hook for your piece. 

A serious argumentative essay probably shouldn’t start with a joke. And a shocking statistic may not be the best way to set the stage for a narrative story.

‍ Take action: Go through your list of potential hooks and cross out anything that doesn’t fit the type of essay you’re writing.

3. Audience and tone

To make sure your essay is properly engaged and understood, you need to keep your audience in mind and choose a tone that fits both your subject and your audience.

For an argumentative essay, you’re trying to convince someone who doesn’t agree with you that what you’re claiming is right or, at least, reasonable. You don’t want to turn them off with snarky or offensive language — but you do want to be authoritative. Your hook should match that tone and support your effort.

A narrative essay is likely to welcome more lyrical language, so starting with a colorful description or an anecdote might make more sense than, say, a bold claim or surprising fact. Whatever tone you choose for your narrative essay — comical or gentle or bold — should be used for your hook.

‍ Expository essays can use all sorts of tones and be written to a variety of audiences, so think carefully about the tone that best fits your subject matter. An essay explaining how the human body shuts down when overdosed will likely require a different tone than one on the lives of circus masters in the late 1800s. 

‍ Take action: Look at your list. Can you write these potential hooks in a tone that suits your subject and audience?

Are you writing a 10-page paper or a three-page reflection? Or is this your senior thesis, pushing 100 pages?

‍ If you’re writing a shorter paper, you’ll want to keep your hook quick and snappy. Don’t wax eloquent over three paragraphs about your childhood baseball league if your research paper on Little League is only four pages long.

At the same time, a long work — like a senior thesis or a term paper — could be enhanced by a longer hook. Just make sure your hook relates to and supports the core point of your essay. You don’t want to waste space describing a scene that ultimately has nothing to do with the rest of your piece.

‍ Take action: If you write out the items on your list, how long will they be? A sentence or paragraph? Perfect. Two to five paragraphs? Unless your essay is on the longer side, you may want to save that information for later in the piece.

‍ Now that you know the basic facts about what you’re writing, let’s look at some approaches you could use to catch those readers — and reel them in.

5 Enticing Essay Hooks (and How to Avoid Common Mistakes)

1. shocking fact or statistic.

1. Shocking fact hook

Your research turned up a trove of information — some of it’s boring, some of it’s downright mind-blowing. Here’s a tip: If you lead with anything, lead with the mind-blowing stuff.

‍ Your job as the writer is to either make the mundane interesting or point out what’s not mundane at all. That starts with your first sentence.

For example, let’s say you’re writing about the color of the sky. You don’t want to start with “the sky is blue”. But you could start by explaining how the sky got its color.

For example:

‍ Making the mundane interesting: Sunlight is clear and colorless — until it strikes earth’s atmosphere. Then, scattered by air molecules, it colors our sky blue.

‍ Not mundane at all: In 2020, wildfires up and down North America’s West Coast sent so much smoke into the atmosphere that, in California, the sky turned orange.

Whether you’re sharing a fact or statistic, make sure it’s shocking or unexpected. And state it as directly as possible. 

Produce a shocking statistic with AI

Go to Wordtune, add your headline, and click on 'Statistical fact'. You can scroll through different AI-suggested stats that relate to your subject at hand.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

2. Bold claim hook

Especially fitting for argumentative essays, this approach goes from zero to 60 in two seconds (or less, depending how fast your audience reads). The idea is to get to the point ASAP. Make your claim — and then dive into your argument to back it up.

Will your claim ruffle feathers? Hopefully. If your “bold claim” makes people shrug, you haven’t succeeded either in writing it or in choosing a claim that’s actually bold. 

‍ Avoid the mistake of making a claim that people already accept as fact.

Just like “the sky is blue” won’t work as a shocking fact, it won’t work as a bold claim. We know the sky’s blue. Tell us something we don’t know. Or better: tell us something we’ve never heard before and may even find hard to believe. (As long as you can back it up.)

What could work for our sky color example?

Generate a bold claim suggestion using AI

Go to Wordtune again, and write a statement that has general consensus. Then, choose the 'Counterargument' suggestion. This is a great way to formulate a bold claim with no effort at all.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

3. Story/Anecdote hook

3. Story/Anecdote hook

If your research turned up a wild example from a study that perfectly fits what you’re writing about, leading with that anecdote might be the best way to open your essay. Or maybe you have a personal story that relates to the topic — or permission from a friend to include their story.

The anecdotal lede is a favorite for magazine journalists and, let’s be honest, most of the writers in the room. It’s an excuse for us to play with words and work in more storytelling. As a bonus, well-told stories also have a knack for sucking in readers. Humans are storytellers . It’s like our radar is always pinging for another wild tale to first hear and then share.

But be careful you’re not wooed by a story that doesn’t fit the essay you’re writing. And if it does fit, keep it brief. The details you include need to be relevant to the essay, not just satisfying the inner gossip’s need for more juice.

A favorite writing tip that applies here: enter the scene as late as possible, leave as early as possible.

Consider these two examples:

‍ Long and rambling: When I moved to Colorado in 2015, I’d never been here before and I didn’t know what to expect. I came from Illinois, where I thought the skies were big and the landscape was boring. I wasn’t expecting the Colorado sky to be bigger. And I certainly wasn’t expecting it to be more blue.

‍ Direct and concise: The first thing I noticed when I moved to Colorado was the sky: it seemed bigger and more blue than the sky anywhere else I’d lived.

Either of these hooks could work fine if we were just writing a personal essay about a move to a new place, but if we’re specifically writing about the sky, the second example is better. It sticks to the point — the sky and the color of the sky — and doesn’t get bogged down in irrelevant details about where the person moved from, whether they’d been to Colorado before, or what they were expecting.

Improve your story using AI

Not all of us are natural storytellers. By using AI you can expand a short-written story, or simply phrase it better.

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

4. Question Hook

4. Question Hook

Do you remember the beginning of this blog? No need to scroll back up, because I just used the same hook style again: the question.

Starting your piece with a question is a great way to spark curiosity in your reader and set up what your piece is about. But there are plenty of ways to do this poorly.

Avoid any variation of “have you ever thought of…” or “have you ever wondered…” Questions like these try to put thoughts into readers’ minds that they may or may not have ever considered, and can be a major turnoff.

Instead, you’ll want to come up with a unique question that approaches your topic from a fresh angle. This means honing in on what was especially interesting or surprising from your research — and maybe even doing some brainstorming of different questions to find the most fascinating one.

What questions could you ask about the color of the sky? So glad you asked.

5. Description Hook

5. Description Hook

Another favorite of the literary writers in the room, description is a prime choice for explanatory or narrative essays. But it takes some focus and intention to do well. 

Like with story hooks, you want to keep descriptive hooks concise. Whatever you’re describing — historical figure, disease, sporting event, London in the 1600s — should be clearly relevant to the central purpose of your essay. Your description should either illustrate the point you’re making or serve as an introduction to your topic.

Mistakes to avoid:

As with all hooks, your description needs to be specific and unexpected .

So what would make a good descriptive hook for an essay on the sky? 

Describing a sunset is too cliche, so cross that one off the list. Describing the sky as it is on a normal day wouldn’t be shocking or unexpected. To reach something unique, you’d have to either zoom in on the air molecules (like we did in our shocking fact example) or take a totally different approach:

Only an artist, the kind that memorized the colors in the crayon box as a kid and uses words like cerulean and violet , could name the difference between the blue of Colorado’s sky and the blue of Indiana’s sky. But she saw the difference, first in photos and then in person. That richer Colorful Colorado blue reflected in her eyes. Not baby blue or sapphire or azure — or even sky blue. Blue bird, perhaps? That’s what Coloradans called it. We’re closer to the sky, they say, that’s why it’s blue-er here. Believe it or not, they’re right.

Create a description hook with AI

By now, you know the process. You write the main topic of your essay, and click 'Explain'. You can also try the 'Emphasize' suggestion, which rather that adding an explanation, reiterates the message more deeply.

Create a description hook with AI

3 Approaches to Avoid

Every type of hook can be done poorly, but avoid these at all costs. These hooks are tired and overdone. They may help you start your first draft, but please — for the sake of your readers — do not submit an essay with any of these leads.

1. Quotations

Abraham Lincoln probably didn’t even say that quote the internet attributed to him, but even if he did, people probably already know it. It’s not shocking or unique or unexpected. Leave it out.

2. Definitions

The New Oxford American Dictionary defines hook as “a thing designed to catch people’s attention.” 

This approach doesn’t catch anyone’s attention — unless you’re defining a particularly unusual word. But even if you are defining an unusual word, there’s probably a more interesting way to start your essay than relying on someone else’s definition.

3. “Imagine this”

Here’s a hint: Cut “imagine this” and keep the rest. The hook will either work (and be an enticing description) or be painfully boring. Either way, you’ll at least avoid the most cliched approach to starting any piece of writing.

Our Go-To Trick for Writing Catchy Hooks

If you want a surefire way to write compelling openings , do this:

Go through your notes and either outline your essay or write the whole thing. This way, you’ll know the central thread (or throughline) that runs throughout your piece. 

Once your essay or outline is complete, go back through and identify a particularly compelling fact, claim, or example that relates to that central thread.

‍ Write up that fact, claim, or example as the hook for your essay using any of the methods we’ve covered. Then revise or write your essay so the hook leads smoothly into the rest of the piece and you don’t repeat that information elsewhere.

Does your hook spark curiosity in you? Did that fact surprise you in the research stage? Chances are, your readers will have the same reaction. And that’s exactly what you want.

P.S. This article was co-written with Wordtune . Wordtune didn’t write the whole piece. Instead, it contributed ideas, suggested rephrasing alternatives, maintained consistency in tone, and of course - made the process much more fun for the writer.

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How to Write a Hook

A hook is an opening statement (which is usually the first sentence) in an essay that attempts to grab the reader’s attention so that they want to read on.

It can be done by using a few different types of hooks, which are a question, quote, statistic, or anecdote. Be mindful that the hook has to be related to the overall topic of the paper. Here are a few examples of each type of hook.

Question Hook

A question hook is when you ask the reader something that they can visualize and try to think of in their own minds. Then, the writer answers the question.

Quotation Hook

A quotation hook is when a quote is used and explained that has relevance to the topic at hand. Make sure this quote comes from a credible source. Also, talk about the quote’s meaning afterwards to ensure that the reader isn’t confused.

Statistic Hook

A statistic hook can be used for more informational pieces of writing. The writer uses a quote from a source that relates to the main idea of the paper, but the quote must have some type of statistics, such as numbers, decimals, or and/or percentages. The meaning and relationship of the quote to the paper needs to be explained afterwards just in case the reader does not quite understand

Anecdotal Hook

When a writer uses a short story to relate to the topic and gain the reader’s attention, they are using an anecdote. This story can be a short, personal story or one that is a figment of your imagination. Make sure that it relates to the main idea of the paper. Show the relevance that it has to the topic of the paper.

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How to Write a Hook for an Argumentative Essay

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Table of contents

Whether it’s your first time working on an essay that defends your position on an issue or you’re doing your first round of revision because your instructor didn’t find your initial introduction compelling, you’ll find this post helpful.

It's not easy to come up with a good start for an argumentative essay. You'll find yourself writing and re-writing the introduction more times than you remember. When your hard work pays off, you'll probably be too tired to finish the rest of the essay.

We’ll show you how to write good hooks without trying too hard. So if you want to introduce your professor to a persuasive essay that’s irresistible to read, continue reading to learn more.

What is a Hook in Essay Writing

A hook in an argumentative essay is the assignment's introductory sentence. A hook appears in the very first sentence of the argument and is often one or two sentences long.

This paragraph may make or break an essay. Your teacher will not bother reading beyond the thesis statement if you insert arbitrary sequences of words in the introduction.

However, if you create a compelling hook, your teacher may naturally develop an interest in reading your argument in the subsequent paragraphs.

A hook isn’t an essay’s introduction. It’s a part of it. When writing the hook, put on your creative hat and write in a style that piques your audience's attention and compels them to read the rest of the essay.

How Should You Write a Hook for an Argumentative Essay

We’ve been writing persuasive essays for years, and, from our experience, there’s no one right way to write a hook for an argument. Here are good hook techniques for your argumentative essays.

1. Ask a Question

Questions are practical because they instantly capture a reader's attention and can pique their interest in a topic to the point where they feel compelled to continue reading. However, this is only possible provided the question is not too broad.

Let’s you’re writing about social media.

Questions like "Is social media bad?" sound somewhat ambiguous. Everyone is already aware of the specifics. So such a question will not do anything to grab the reader's interest.

Therefore, write extremely engaging questions that encourage critical thinking instead of creating questions that need Yes or No responses. In other words, consider rhetoric as your hidden weapon if you wish to begin a hook with a question.

Consider the following example question : “Should children have social media accounts before attending college?”.

In addition to being rhetorical, the question immediately captures the reader's attention, not to mention there’s room for an argument.

2. Use Statistics

Statistics are beneficial because they stimulate inquiry. If employed in persuasive writing, statistics may present readers with previously unknown facts and information. That might do much to pique their interest in reading your essay from beginning to end.

As you want your essay to be as credible as possible, you should conduct research and verify the stats before adding them to your essay. Don't forget to specify the source from which you got the statistics.

After all, even your instructor will require the source of the data you present in your argument as a reference.

3. Start with a Quote

We do not advocate beginning essays with quotations. However, if the citation is within the context of an argument, it might serve as an excellent hook for the paper. Again, you must ensure that the quotation is pertinent to the topic and consistent with your thesis statement.

Educators frequently discourage students from beginning argumentative essays with quotations for at least two reasons. First, quotations represent the ideas of another author, not your own. Second, citations tend to inhibit self-expression and innovation.

Despite this, you may utilize a quotation to attract your audience's attention if it is not too vague or overused. You will need to do more research to locate an uncommon but pertinent quotation.

4. Tell a Story

Some writers argue that stories only work best for narrative and descriptive essays. However, we’ve tested and found them to be just as compelling to start an argumentative essay .

Understand that you have little time to captivate the audience with a narrative, so ensure your story is concise, clear, and direct to the point. More importantly, the story you share should be 100% relevant to the essay’s primary theme.

Since arguments must be utterly devoid of personal feelings, don’t infuse the hook of your argument with such sentiments. In other words, unless instructed otherwise, avoid using first-person pronouns in the argumentative essay.

5. Use a Common Misconception

Given that a strong hook should capture the audience's attention, what could be a better method to compose it than to include a common misconception?

A common misconception is a belief held by many people, but it’s, in fact, false. When you develop a hook that incorporates a misunderstanding, you not only surprise your readers but also instantly grab their attention.

Final thoughts

A hook alone won’t get you an A+ for an argumentative essay , but it’s a great starting point. In any case, you want to make sure you can grab the reader's attention first before you can structure and write the rest of the essay.

So take any of the options we’ve shared in this guide and grab the attention of your target audience with your argument.

Useful links:

Writing an Introduction for an Argumentative Essay: 10 Do's and Don'ts How to Write a Strong Conclusion Paragraph in an Argumentative Essay What are Good Argumentative Essay Topics: 5 Tips to Make the Right Choice (+ 15 Topic Ideas) Rebuttal in Argumentative Essay: What It Is and How to Write One? How Significant Are Opposing Points of View in an Argument?

Last edit at Sep 25 2022

Stefani Holloway

Stefani is a professional writer and blogger at Writers Per Hour . She primarily contributes articles about careers, leadership, business, and writing. Her educational background in family science and journalism has given her a broad base from which to approach many topics. She especially enjoys preparing resumes for individuals who are changing careers.

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Good hooks for argumentative essays (with examples)

good hooks for persuasive essays examples

Many students find it hard to create good hooks when writing an argumentative essay. The hook is the first sentence or two of your essay, and it should interest the reader in your topic. A good argumentative hook for example can leave them thinking “Yes! I need to know why this is true!”

In this guide, we will learn how to write a good hook for argumentative essay and earn a top grade.

Some starter questions answered in this guide include:

Argumentative essay outline

Argumentative essay layout, argumentative essay transition words.

argumentative essay examples

If you want to learn how to write a strong good hook for an argumentative essay, just follow these simple rules. If you need essay help , just fill out the order form here . We have over 3000 essay writers standing by ready to craft your paper, so there’s no need to worry about it! Let us know what type of essay paper you’re looking for and let our certified writer make your dreams come true.

What makes a good hook for an argumentative essay?

A good hook is a question or statement that catches the reader’s attention and piques their interest. It must directly relate to the topic of your paper, but it cannot be so on-the-nose that you sound like you’re complaining about something. Keep in mind that your thesis statement won’t be just one sentence; it will have several sentences that need to lead logically from the introduction into the bulk of the text.

Characteristics of a good hook for argumentative essay

So, what are some characteristics of a good hook for argumentative essay?

6 Types of argumentative essay hooks

There are 6 types of argumentative essay hooks you can use to grab the attention of your audience:

Quotation or citation hooks

Factual hooks, personal experience hook, question hook, case study hook, definition hook.

Below is a detailed analysis of the 6 hooks for essays listed above with examples on how to write a hook for an argumentative essay (with detailed essay hook examples ).

Quotation or citation hooks involve using quotes, statistics, and other research data to support your argument.

For example, if you are writing about how people rely too heavily on cell phones to communicate with each other as opposed to giving face-to-face time as a priority, then one possible hook might be:

“A recent study by the Pew Research Center reveals that American teens between the ages of 12 and 17 send an average of 60 text messages per day.”

Factual hooks use facts and figures from surveys and polls. For example: “According to a survey conducted by CBS news, more than 50% of first year college students wish their parents had not pushed so hard for them to attend college.” Or, “According to the US Census Bureau, the average household spent $2400 on back-to-school supplies in 2014.”

Facts are very important when writing an argument essay because the facts present a valid way to support your argument. For example, if you are writing an opinion essay about how commercialism is damaging Christmas traditions, citing a statistic that shows that spending for Christmas has increased by 500% in the past ten years will help strengthen and support your argument.

Personal experience hooks are effective hooks in argumentative writing because they involve the audience directly. For example: “If I had it my way, students would have to give up social media for an entire semester just so that they could focus on their academics.” Or, “As a college student hailing from a low socioeconomic background, I can attest to how frustrating it is not being able to buy name brand items at school prices after graduation.”

By sharing a personal experience when starting an argumentative essay, the writer is able to catch the reader’s attention right away by either relating to a personal situation or revealing something that many people might find surprising. In addition to this, these hooks have an active voice which makes the argumentative essay feel more direct and forceful.

To use a question hook successfully, you must frame your argument as a question. For example: “Do you think life would be easier if you never had to deal with the in-between moments in life, when your life didn’t fit perfectly into any timeframe?”

Using a question as an argumentative paper hook allows you to organize your paper around a series of questions. The format for this type of paper is simple:

A case study hook allows you to illustrate examples using stories about real people. Using real life case studies can attract your readers’ interest in your paper because everyone loves a good story.

You may consider using this type of hook in any argumentative essay, but it is especially effective when you are writing an opinion essay or persuasive essay . This type of hook has the advantage over other types because it can be personal and easy to understand at the same time. You may use details about people’s lives to make your point clear and maybe even inspire emotions like empathy within your readers. The disadvantage however is that not every reader will find the case study equally interesting or involving; thus depending on what you are writing about, you may want to try out more than one type of hook before deciding which one is best for your particular scenario.

For example: “Jessica was excited to make new friends at college until she realized how difficult it was trying to find common ground between acquaintances.”

A definition hook allows you define terms that may or may not be familiar to the reader. For example: “Art is a form of expression that balances creativity, imagination, individuality, and beauty.”

Example of a definition hook in argumentative essay writing would be:

“Art is a form of expression that balances creativity, imagination, individuality, and beauty.”

Writing challenge: Practise writing good hook for argumentative essays

Now that you know how to write a good hook for argumentative essay, you need to practise writing argumentative hooks by choosing two types of hooks above and creating good argumentative hooks.

Share your views and the results of this challenge in the comment section.

Argumentative essay structure

Argumentative essay background information, qualitative research question examples, related guides, argumentative essay topics, how to write a thesis statement for an..., argumentative essay format, how to write a conclusion for an argumentative..., argumentative research paper outline, gun control argumentative essay, how to start an argumentative essay | introduction....

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