How To Choose Good Personal Essay Topics: Tips & Examples

Selecting a good personal essay topic is important because the topic will set the tone for the entire paper. By picking something original that you feel interested in, you will find the writing process more enjoyable as well as your audience will feel more engaged. Writing about something intriguing keeps everyone more involved because they are excited to hear about what you have written.

Below are some simple steps that can be taken to select the best possible subject for your next personal essay.


  1. Understand
  2. The first step to writing a successful essay is making sure you fully understand the expectations of your finished product. Consider the requirements, instructions, and rubric. All of this information will help you in selecting the possible personal account to share in your paper.

  3. Consider
  4. Once you have a clear understanding of how you expected to perform in your writing, you will be able to better select what you intend to write about. Explore unique and original subjects, and think about what is “different” that you can share with your readers. By writing about something you feel interested in, you will create more interest work. Create a shortlist of potential topics.

  5. Research
  6. With your shortlist of potential topics, you are now ready to finally select what you intend to write about. Dig into your memories and ideas. Although a personal essay is not research-based, you can still consider whether you have enough material, information, or “research” on the topic in order to write an essay.

Now that you know how to select what you want to write about, we have laid out some examples for you. These examples can help spark an idea for your own topic.


  • When You Learned to Ride a Bike: Share the coming of age story of the first time you rode your bike.
  • Your First Favorite Book: A good book can change your outlook on life. Think about some of the best books you have read.
  • Youngest Memory: What is your first memory? Why do you believe it was significantly memorable?
  • Greatest Accomplishment: Think about your largest accomplishment.
  • Loss of a Loved One: Losing someone you love is very hard. What did you learn form this?
  • With these tips and examples you will be writing the best possible personal essay in no time!

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