Focus on Writing : Paragraphs and Essays

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  • Edition: 2nd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-09-15
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
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Focus on Writing: Paragraphs and Essaysis a clear, inviting text that engages students visually, demonstrates concepts with color and highlighting, and offers students the support and coverage they need to write well in college.Focus on Writingoffers the unique self-assessment tool T.E.S.T. (Topic sentence,Evidence,Summary statement, andTransitions), which works clearly and simply to motivate students and empowers them to become capable writers and self-editors. In this revision, best-selling authors Laurie Kirszner and Stephen Mandell provide more support for moving from paragraph to essay, more step-by-step coverage of the writing process, and more diverse examples, exercises, and models, making the text both student-friendly and thorough.

Author Biography

During their more than 25-year collaboration, LAURIE KIRSZNER and STEPHEN MANDELL have produced a number of best-selling college texts for Bedford/St. Martin's, including Foundations First: Sentences and Paragraphs (2008), Writing First: Practice in Context (2009), Patterns for College Writing (2010), and Practical Argument (2011). Laurie Kirszner teaches composition, literature, and creative writing at the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. Stephen Mandell is the founder and former director of the basic writing program at Drexel University, where he teaches composition, literature, and technical and business writing.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Understanding the Writing Process 
STEP 1: Planning 
     A. Understanding Paragraph Structure 
     B. Focusing on Your Assignment, Purpose, and Audience 
     C. Finding Ideas 
          Journal Writing 
     D. Identifying Your Main Idea and Writing a Topic Sentence  
STEP 2: Organizing 
     E. Choosing Supporting Points 
     F. Arranging Supporting Points 
STEP 3: Drafting 
     G. Drafting Your Paragraph 
     H. TESTing Your Paragraph 
STEP 4: Revising and Editing 
     I. Revising Your Paragraph 
     J. Editing Your Paragraph  
Chapter 2 TESTing Your Paragraphs
     A. Using a Topic Sentence to Unify Your Paragraph
     B. Using Evidence to Support Your Paragraph's Main Idea
     C. Using a Summary Statement to Reinforce Your Paragraph's Unity
     D. Using Transitions to Add Coherence to Your Paragraph
Chapter 3 Using Exemplification 
     A. What Is Exemplification?
     B. Writing an Exemplification Paragraph 
Chapter 4 Using Narration
     A. What Is Narration?
     B. Writing a Narrative Paragraph
Chapter 5 Using Description
     A. What Is Description?
     B. Writing a Descriptive Paragraph
Chapter 6 Using Process
     A. What Is Process?
          Process Explanations
     B. Writing a Process Paragraph
Chapter 7 Using Cause and Effect
     A. What Is Cause and Effect?
     B. Writing a Cause-and-Effect Paragraph
Chapter 8 Using Comparison and Contrast
     A. What Is Comparison and Contrast?
          Subject-by-Subject Comparisons
          Point-by-Point Comparisons
     B. Writing a Comparison-and-Contrast Paragraph
Chapter 9 Classification  
     A. What Is Classification? 
     B. Writing a Classification Paragraph 
Chapter 10 Definition 
     A. What Is Definition? 
     B. Writing a Definition Paragraph 

Chapter 11 Using Argument 
     A. What Is Argument? 
     B. Writing an Argument Paragraph 
Chapter 12 Writing an Essay  
STEP 1: Planning 
     A. Understanding Essay Structure 
     B. Focusing on Your Assignment, Purpose, and Audience 
     C. Finding Ideas 
     D. Identifying Your Main Idea and State Your Thesis 
STEP 2: Organizing 
     E. Choosing Supporting Points 
     F. Arranging Your Supporting Points 
STEP 3: Drafting 
     G. Drafting Your Essay  
     H. TESTing Your Essay 
STEP 4: Revising and Editing 
     I. Revising Your Essay 
     J. Editing Your Essay 
     K. Checking Your Essay's Format 

Chapter 13 Writing Introductions and Conclusions
     A. Introductions
          Beginning with a Narrative
          Beginning with a Question (or a Series of Questions)
          Beginning with a Definition
          Beginning with a Quotation
          Beginning with a Surprising Statement
     B. Conclusions
          Concluding with a Narrative
          Concluding with a Prediction
          Concluding with a Recommendation
          Concluding with a Quotation
Chapter 14 Patterns of Essay Development
     A. Exemplification
          Model Exemplification Essay
     B. Narration
          Model Narrative Essay
     C. Description
          Model Descriptive Essay
     D. Process
          Model Process Essay
     E. Cause and Effect
          Model-and-Effect Essay
     F. Comparison and Contrast
          Model Comparison-and Contrast Essay
     G. Classification
          Model Classification Essay
     H. Definition
          Model Definition Essay
     I. Argument
          Model Argument Essay
Chapter 15 Writing Simple Sentences
     A. Subjects
     B. Prepositional Phrases
     C. Verbs
          Action Verbs
          Linking Verbs
          Helping Verbs
Chapter 16 Writing Compound Sentences
     A. Using Coordinating Conjunctions
     B. Using Semicolons
     C. Using Transitional Words and Phrases
Chapter 17 Writing Complex Sentences
     A. Identifying Complex Sentences
     B. Using Subordinating Conjunctions
     C. Using Relative Pronouns
Chapter 18 Writing Varied Sentences
     A. Varying Sentence Types
     B. Varying Sentence Openings
          Beginning with Adverbs
          Beginning with Prepositional Phrases
     C. Combining Sentences
          Using Present Participles
          Using Past Participles
          Using a Series of Words
          Using Appositives
     D. Varying Sentence Length
Chapter 19 Using Parallelism
     A. Recognizing Parallel Structure
     B. Using Parallel Structure
          Paired Items
          Items in a Series
          Items in a List or in an Outline   
Chapter 20 Using Words Effectively
     A. Using Specific Words
     B. Using Concise Language
     C. Avoiding Slang
     D. Avoiding Clichés
     E. Using Similes and Metaphors
     F. Avoiding Sexist Language
Chapter 21 Run-Ons
     A. Recognizing Run-Ons
     B. Correcting Run-Ons
Chapter 22 Sentence Fragments
     A. Recognizing Fragments
     B. Missing-Subject Fragments
     C. Phrase Fragments
          Appositive Fragments
          Prepositional Phrase Fragments
     D. Incomplete-Verb Fragments
          - ing Fragments
          Infinitive Fragments
     E. Dependent Clause Fragments  
Chapter 23 Subject-Verb Agreement
     A. Understanding Subject-Verb Agreement
     B. Compound Subjects
     C. Be, Have, and Do
     D. Words between Subject and Verb
     E. Collective Noun Subjects
     F. Indefinite Pronoun Subjects
     G. Verbs before Subjects
Chapter 24 Illogical Shifts
     A. Shifts in Tense
     B. Shifts in Person
     C. Shifts in Voice
Chapter 25 Dangling and Misplaced Modifiers
     A. Correcting Dangling Modifiers
     B. Correcting Misplaced Modifiers
Chapter 26 Verbs: Past Tense
     A. Regular Verbs
     B. Irregular Verbs
     C. Problem Verbs: Be
     D. Problem Verbs: Can/Could and Will/Would
Chapter 27 Verbs: Past Participles
     A. Regular Past Participles
     B. Irregular Past Participles
     C. The Present Perfect Tense
     D. The Past Perfect Tense
     E. Past Participles as Adjectives
Chapter 28 Nouns and Pronouns
     A. Identifying Nouns
     B. Forming Plural Nouns
     C. Identifying Pronouns
     D. Pronoun-Antecedent Agreement
     E. Special Problems with Agreement
          Compound Antecedents
          Indefinite Pronoun Antecedents
          Collective Noun Antecedents
     F. Pronoun Case
          Subjective Case
          Objective Case
          Possessive Case
     G. Special Problems with Case
          Pronouns in Compounds
          Pronouns in Comparisons
          Who and Whom
     H. Reflexive Pronouns
Chapter 29 Adjectives and Adverbs
     A. Identifying Adjectives and Adverbs
     B. Comparatives and Superlatives
          Forming Comparatives and Superlatives
          Solving Special Problems with Comparatives and Superlatives
Chapter 30 Grammar and Usage for ESL Writers
     A. Subjects in Sentences
     B. Plural Nouns
     C. Count and Noncount Nouns
     D. Determiners with Count and Noncount Nouns
     E. Articles
          The Definite Article
          Indefinite Articles
          No Article
          Articles with Proper Nouns
     F. Negative Statements and Questions
          Negative Statements
     G. Verb Tense
     H. Stative Verbs
     I. Modal Auxiliaries
     J. Gerunds
     K. Placing Modifiers in Order
          Required Order
          Preferred Order
     L. Choosing Prepositions
     M. Prepositions in Familiar Expressions
     N. Prepositions in Phrasal Verbs
          Separable Phrasal Verbs
          Inseparable Phrasal Verbs
Chapter 31 Using Commas
     A. Commas in a Series
     B. Commas with Introductory Phrases and Transitional Words and Phrases
         Introductory Phrases
         Transitional Words and Phrases
     C. Commas with Appositives
     D. Commas with Nonrestrictive Clauses
     E. Commas in Dates and Addresses
     F. Unnecessary Commas
Chapter 32 Using Apostrophes
     A. Apostrophes in Contractions
     B. Apostrophes in Possessives
          Singular Nouns and Indefinite Pronouns
          Plural Nouns
     C. Incorrect Use of Apostrophes
Chapter 33 Using Other Punctuation Marks
     A. Semicolons
     B. Colons
     C. Dashes and Parentheses
Chapter 34 Understanding Mechanics
     A. Capitalizing Proper Nouns
     B. Punctuating Quotations
     C. Setting Off Titles
     D. Hyphens
     E. Abbreviations
     F. Numbers
Chapter 35 Understanding Spelling
     A. Becoming a Better Speller
     B. ie and ei
     C. Prefixes
     D. Suffixes
          Words Ending in Silent e
          Words Ending in -y
          Doubling the Final Consonant
     E. Commonly Confused Words

Chapter 36 Reading Critically
     A. Previewing
     B. Highlighting
     C. Annotating
     D. Outlining
     E. Summarizing
     F. Writing a Response Paragraph
Chapter 37: Readings for Writers
      *“Don't Call Me a Hot Tamale, Judith Ortiz Cofer
      *“Volunteer Workers of the World, Unite,” Nicols Fox
      “Orange Crush,” Liyun Li
      *“Pick One,” David Matthews
      *“An American in Mexico,” Alex Espinoza
      *“A Fable for Tomorrow, “ Rachel Carson
      *“Mummy Arts,” Adam Goodheart
      *“My Grandmother's Dumpling,” Amy Ma
Cause and Effect
      *“The Poncho Bearer,” John Schwartz
      *“Connected, Yes, But Hermetically Sealed,” Ben Stein
Comparison and Contrast
      *“My Two Lives,” Jhumpa Lahiri 
      “The Transaction,” William Zinsser
      *“'But What Do You Mean?'” Deborah Tannen
      “The Dog Ate My Disk, and Other Tales of Woe,” Carolyn Foster Segal
     *“The Wife Beater,” Gayle Rosenwald Smith
     *“Triskaidekaphobia,” Paul Hoffman
     “Don't Hang Up, That's My Mom Calling,” Bobbi Buchanan
     *“For Most People, College Is a Waste of Time,” Charles Murray
     *“Impounded Fathers,” Edwidge Danticat
     1. Orientation Strategies
     2. First-Week Strategies
     3. Day-to-Day Strategies
     4. Time-Management Strategies
     5. Note-Taking Strategies
          During Class
          After Class
          Before the Next Class
     6. Homework Strategies
     7. Exam-Taking Strategies
          Before the Exam
          During the Exam
     1. Choosing a Topic
     2. Doing Research
          Finding Information in the Library
          Finding Information on the Internet
     3. Taking Notes
     4. Watching Out for Plagiarism
     5. Drafting Your Thesis
     6. Making an Outline
     7. Writing Your Paper
     8. Documenting Your Sources
          Parenthetical References in the Text
          The Works-Cited List
          Sample Essay using MLA Style
Answers to Odd-Numbered Exercise Items
Index of Rhetorical Patterns
Correction Symbols

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