How to write a hook sentence

Do you want your reader to wonder what’s next in your essay and keep reading? Then you need something to grab the reader’s attention: the hook sentence.

Essential steps of writing a hook sentence

Developing a creative opening statement is crucial. If you want to write a good hook, it should be interesting, relevant to the topic of the essay, and suitable for the author’s thesis statement. Follow these steps in order to create an effective hook.  

Here are the different types of essay hooks that will keep readers interested in your essay. 

Question hook

If you start your essay introduction with a question hook, it’s easier to engage the reader as they’ll be curious about the question and keep reading. 

As the name suggests, you simply start your essay with a question to readers. Now look at the example below.

Question hook example


How did people create a concept such as pre-feminism? Why did people read ancient tragedies and perceive those such ideas? Hook sentence with a question to interest the reader. The thing is, Sophocles wrote several tragedies long before feminism was a concept. In ancient Greek myths, Gods and Goddesses lived in the mountain Olympus, and men prayed to them for help. A Goddess was superior to immortal men. For example, men prayed Athena to win battles. Now, the question is, why did men show respect to the Gods and Goddesses but perceive immortal women as inferior to immortal men. Antigone was one of these immortal women, who showed her bravery against death and King Creon’s law. Sophocles’ Antigone tragedy is seen as a source of the pre-feminism concept.
....(introduction continues)

Statistic hook

A statistic hook can instantly engage your reader, especially in explanatory essays, motivating them to keep reading and learn more. 

Feel free to use different form of statistics such as numbers, decimals, and/or percentages to support the information you provide.

Statistic hook example


According to research, %30 of all adolescents in the United States experience anxiety disorders (Nutt para.15) Hook sentence with a statistic More and more people, especially teenagers, suffer from anxiety every day. It is a severe mental health problem, and the sheer scale of anxiety in today's youth is horrifying. Before taking any action, governments and health institutes should detect its causes and impacts on teenagers. In order to understand the situation better, this paper identifies the causes of teenager anxiety and describes its effects on their lives. It is clear that, in general, people's adverse experiences are the most significant cause of teenager anxiety, and it primarily affects their everyday lives destructively.
....(Essay continues with body paragraphs)

Quotation hook

Starting your essay with a quote or citation from a famous person can grab the reader’s attention. Make the quote relevant to your topic and explain it more for readers to grasp it. 

This type of hook can especially be useful for biography essays. Imagine starting with a quote of a famous person that you’re writing a biography about. That would intrigue your reader and make them read more. 

Now look at the example below: 

Quotation hook example


“Today’s wars are mostly undeclared, undefined, and inglorious affairs typically involving multiple parties, foreign governments, proxy forces, covert methods, and novel weapons” (Tisdall, para. 7). Hook sentence with a quote So true, isn’t it. There are, actually, two main parties in today’s wars; the ones who kill and the ones who die! Today’s wars are not the wars of land, dignity, or even religion -although it is not a matter of fact to start a war for-. Wars today are all about money, corporations, and sales.

Story hook

A story hook is used in the introduction of an essay with a personal story or an incident to capture the reader’s interest and compel them to continue reading.

This type of hooks are really useful for narrative or descriptive essays where you need to captivate the reader by storytelling.  Or simply use them when you’re writing a short story 🙂 

Story hook example


When I was around the age of ten, my great grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. Hook sentence with a story telling style I began to slowly see a change in her actions. She began to slowly lose her memory. It could be anything from forgetting to put more bubble gum into her purse to forgetting where she was. Things progressed and she began to forget who her children were and she would wonder out of the house to try and get “home.” Her progression of Alzheimer's lasted around six years, and throughout the six years she had went through the seven stages of Alzheimer’s. Not only did this affect my great grandmother’s life, but the people around her as well. Alzheimer’s Disease, is named after Dr. Alois Alzheimer. In 1906 Dr. Alzheimer had been examining the brain of a woman who had died from and unusual mental illness, something never seen before.

Statement hook

Statement hook is a sentence that makes an assertion about your subject. It is an excellent strategy because it doesn’t matter if your reader agrees or disagrees. What matters most is how you support your claim. 

As you see from the example below, you sound really bold with this type of hook, so it’s better to use them in persuasive or argumentative essays, where you need to sound confident and try convincing your reader. 

Statement hook example


To refuse vaccines is to not fear death and disease. Hook sentence with a statement A growing number of people have been refusing immunization for their children and themselves because they are afraid of possible harm. They do not realize that vaccines have prevented disease worldwide. Vaccines have more benefits than risks because they eliminate and significantly prevent disease and their risks are often exaggerated or false.

So after all, crafting a great hook sentence takes time and effort, but the results can be incredibly rewarding in terms of increased reader engagement. During the process, keep in mind you make use of paraphrasing tools to pick what sounds the best for your audience.

By using one or more of the various types of hook sentences, you can effectively engage your audience from the very beginning and compel them to continue reading.

Key takeaways

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a good hook sentence?

A good hook sentence always captivates your reader and make them read more. 

What are the common hook types?

Quote, statistic, story, statement, and questions hooks are the most common in many essay types. 

How to write a transition from a hook to a thesis?

First write your hook that is relevant to your main idea, then dig deeper into your hook by providing background and context. Finally, state your thesis statement and continue with the body paragraphs.