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Friday, February 24, 2012

Essay Writing - Tips for character analysis, Due Monday, Feb 27

Essay Writing
Thesis statement = 1 sentence that contains:
·      Specific topic
·      Precise Opinion
·      Plan of development
for more information or examples discussed in class.
Ex:  In the story, “Sweeping Pittsburgh Clean,” Elizabeth Cochrane is an impulsive, unintelligent character, which is demonstrated by her actions, her responses to others, and her set of beliefs.

Introductory paragraph  - should contain
·      Effective lead – 4-5 sentences
·      Thesis statement
And possibly,
·      Transition to next paragraph

Effective leads – can contain
·      A question – do not just write, how would you feel? Or what if? Or has this ever happened to you?
o  Examples:   How you would survive if you found yourself alone in the wilderness? How would you defend yourself against predators? What would you eat? Where would you find water?
o  What’s increasing faster than the price of gasoline? Apparently, the cost of prisons.
·      Quote from a famous person or famous piece of writing
·      Sensory details – to place the reader in the situation
·      Anecdote – short story/memory
for more information or examples given in class.

In your lead/intro, DO NOT:
·      Introduce yourself – hi, my name is…
·      Use first person – I believe, in my opinion, I think,
·      Announce your plans – in this paper, I am going to talk about…, this essay will be about…
·      Use a dictionary definition
·      Start a sentence with yes or no

Imagine standing in a factory for 14 hours without a bathroom break.  You’re tired, hungry, and aching all over.  When you finally can’t take it anymore, you sneak off for a drink of water.  And then, in the words of Donald Trump, “YOU’RE FIRED!”  This very scenario happened to Elizabeth Cochrane in the story, “Sweeping Pittsburgh Clean.”  Elizabeth proves to be a character who is __(opinion about topic)___ through her __idea 1__, __idea 2___, and ___idea 3___.

Body paragraphs:       
Each body paragraph should center around the ideas in your thesis. 
·      Body paragraph 1 is about idea 1
·      Body paragraph 2 is about idea 2
·      Body paragraph 3 is about idea 3. 
·      Use details from whatever you’ve read to support your ideas and prove your opinion is correct.
·      Use transition statements at the end of each paragraph.
·      Use sophisticated language!  Vary your sentences.  When you proofread, if you notice the same word over and over, find a synonym!

Effective conclusions
·      Restate your thesis
·      Return to your effective lead 
o  End the anecdotal story
o  Reanalyze the quote or use a new quote
o  Add more sensory details
o  Answer your question or ask a new question
·      Sum up with a clincher statement
for more information or examples given in class.

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