How to Write an Essay, 1886

two young men writing at table

“Topics Suitable for Composition” proposed by Thomas E. Hill, Hill’s Manual of Social and Business Forms:

• The Bachelor’s Home.

• Discoveries of Galileo.

• People whom we Meet.

• Pleasures of Suburban Life.

• Love Conquers Selfishness.

• Things in a Country Store.

• The Books we Ought to Read.

• A Bar-Tender’s Fearful Dream.

• Home Amusements Considered.

• My Garden, and What was In It.

• Going to Visit Mother Next Week.

• A Drunkard’s Fate.

• Beauty at Seventy-Five.

• Adventures in a Snow-storm.

• Description of a Spelling-Bee.

Need to produce some winning prose on a deadline? Try one of these topics, or mix and match. Discoveries of Galileo in a Country Store? A Drunkard’s Suburban Life? I’d read that.