In chapter five, I found three important elements of an exploratory essay: explaining multiple possibilities/angles so the reader is not caught following a single idea; expressing the thinking process that occurs during research; and revise to keep the essay clear and concise, yet interesting.
"The essential move for exploratory thinking and writing is to keep a problem alive through consideration of multiple solutions or points of views...The thinker resists closure--that is, resists settling too soon on a thesis" (Rammage, Bean, and Johnson 107). Following this, readers have the opportunity to come to their own conclusions, while being lead down a thought path that the writer creates. For this reason, it is important for several points of view to be expressed to show the benefits and downfalls of the possibilities.
Rammage, Bean, and Johnson say,"...the goal when writing with an exploratory aim is to reproduce the research and thinking process, taking the readers on the same intellectual and emotional journey you have just traveled" (Rammage, Bean, and Johnson 113). It is important to show the readers the thought process you go through so they can clearly understand and make connections from one thought to another.
Lastly, revising makes a phenomenal difference. The essay may be well thought out, and have an emotional appeal, but it might run too long, leaving the readers with a growing detachment and straying thoughts. Therefore, "when [writers] revise, their major concern is to improve their essay's interest level by keeping it focused and lively. Often drafts need to be pruned to remove the extraneous details and keep the pace moving...achieve the right balance between summarizing sources and showing the evolution of [their] own thinking" (Rammage, Bean, and Johnson 115).