Archive for September, 2011

Rule on Defining Words within Context

Always review the definition of the type of word you want to use within the context of your essay. Not every word fits or is appropriate. In order to know whether a word is suitable, you have to understand the literary work. You have to know the characters, context, and relationships. Only then will you be able to determine the proper use of a word.

This quick-reference topic falls under the post “Figure 59: Essay Excerpt on Killoran, Lily, and Selden, The House of Mirth.” You may click the link to view the post. Figure 59 falls under the comment “Word Choice.”

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Rule on Completing a Thought

When you abruptly end a thought within your paper, you create a “truncated statement.” You leave out vital information for both the reader and the professor.

The best solution to correcting a truncated statement is to apply the technique of “follow-through.” What this means is after you have incorporated a quote, you must follow through and evaluate the quote. In other words, your statements after the quote represent follow-through. If you include additional ideas within your evaluation statements, then you must also follow through and provide as much information necessary to complete the thought or your introduction of the ideas.

Although it is up to you to determine how much information will complete a thought, a particular perspective, you can do this simply by answering who, what, when, where, how, and in what way. Once you have answered these basic foundational questions concerning the text, then every statement after these represent follow-through.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “Truncated Statement.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Disconnecting Your Readers

When you leave out information, readers immediately sense that something is not present and begin to question what the missing something is. They feel disconnected. To solve this problem, they begin to fill in what they think are gaps in your analysis. In other words, they make assumptions based upon what you have written. Without your guidance, they leave your paper with a wrong understanding of the author’s work. They leave without any direction.

The experience for the professor is different. When your professor reads your paper and arrives at a truncated statement or a paragraph, he feels frustrated, because he knows “what” will fit to turn the truncated statement into a complete thought. The professor feels frustrated because he knows you did not plan well. For example, as the professor reads your paper, he examines your analysis as an expert on the subject. The professor can just about guess every time what you are going to say (write) for each paragraph and what kind of connections you will need to make. In other words, the professor knows the field, the author, and the literary work.

When you leave a statement without any warning or notice that you are about to do so, you leave your professor with the option of concluding what you should have written based upon adopted practices. When the professor must conclude, which means he figuratively writes the paper for you, then he also must lower your grade. In other words, the professor is not in the business of writing your paper. The goal of the professor is to teach you about a period, author, literary work, and critical views, not also to write your paper.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “Truncated Statement.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Asking Questions about Connections

When you write your papers and begin new paragraphs, think about the “connection” between the new paragraph and the previous one. What is your motivation for incorporating the new paragraph? Why do you start the paragraph in the way that you do? Is the new paragraph in sequence to the previous one? In other words, does the example in the previous paragraph represent a “first” or a “second”? If so, what is the relation between this previous paragraph and the new? These are the questions you must always ask yourself each time you create new topic sentences for new paragraphs.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “Transitions.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Revising General Statements

In revising general statements, always ask yourself why the subject is important to you.  Why do you want to discuss this subject? Then ask the following questions:

1) What relationship does my subject have to another subject?

2) What relationship does my viewpoint have to another viewpoint?

3) What relationship does the author’s viewpoint have to another author’s viewpoint”?

Once you establish the specifics, you can establish the connections, and you thereby bring in more detail, by default.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “Too General to be Meaningful.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Matching Socks

When you incorporate a quote or add to what you have written already, the quote must match your ideas within the paper, especially within the paragraph you are using to convey your points.

Think of your quote and topic sentence or your quote and example as two socks that match. If you are discussing one thing but the quote you want to use is an example of something totally different, don’t use the quote. Your professor will always grade on your ability to synthesize information, how you bring together corresponding points and examples and how you incorporate them within your paper appropriately, making sure that the quote and example you use actually serve their proper functions.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “This Quote is out Context.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Rule on Referencing Characters

When referring to characters within a literary work, maintain the same context of singular and plural references.

This quick-reference topic falls under the post “Figure 56: Essay Excerpt on Christmas, Light in August.”  You may click the link to view the post. Figure 56 falls under the comment “This Doesn’t Occur/Contradiction.”

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Rule on Examining Historical Context

Of each period, examine it historically by researching such characters as the kings of a period, their relationships, and their enemies. Begin with the objective to find out the values, beliefs, and moral behavior of people during the time; the class situation; the race situation; and the economic situation of the day.

Although you are stepping a bit away from the immediate text before you, there is nothing wrong with researching the time period in which the author writes. The context of any work the author writes within is always, at least, a range from the author’s beginnings to his or her death. You may examine at least fifty years prior to the author’s work because you have to take into consideration the author’s parents, but you must never examine what the author thinks after his death, because the author can’t think and be dead at the same time.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “There is No Indication of This.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Writing Solid Papers

When you write an essay that stays true to its original form, shape, and structure, you have a paper that is solid. When the paper is solid, it has easily collectable parts and facts are credible and verifiable. It is also clear that you have built the paper on a firm foundation, on a strong thesis. On the other hand, when you write a paper that has no shape or structure, one in particular that deviates from the main points, then you have a paper that is in liquid form. With the right ingredients combined with the liquid, you can transform the paper into a solid piece of work.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “Solid.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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Rule on Incorporating Evidence

Each time you make a statement, you must support the statement by incorporating in-text evidence. Always remember that you are not the original writer of the text you are analyzing. Whether you decide to inform or persuade your audience or do both, your initial objective is to always prove your thesis. The way that you prove your thesis is by including evidence and facts and incorporating quotes from the author’s work.

This quick-reference topic falls under the comment “Solid.” You may click the link to view the post.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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