Real Essays with Readings Writing for Success in College, Work, and Everyday

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  • Edition: 6th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2017-10-21
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's

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Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?


Connect writing with your real life and the expectations of the larger world as Real Essays with Readings develops the skills you need to be a successful writer in everday situations.

Table of Contents


1 Getting Started

Understanding Instructors’ Expectations

Making Connections

Your Classroom Writing Community

Your College Community

Learning from Prior Experiences

Setting Goals

Writing Goals

Reading Goals

Reading and Writing for Your Degree

Career Goals

Part 1 Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing

2 Critical Thinking and Critical Reading

Critical Thinking

Question Assumptions and Biases

Apply the Critical Thinking Process

Active and Critical Reading

Apply the Critical Reading Process

2PR The Critical Reading Process


Reading Multimodal Texts Critically

2PR The Critical Reading Process for Multimodal Texts

3 Effective Writing: An Overview

The Elements of Effective Writing


Main Idea and Support

Organization, Unity, and Coherence

Conventions: Structure and Grammar

An Overview of the Writing Process

Reflecting on the Process

4 Responding to Texts

Ways of Responding to Texts






Documenting Sources

Reviewing What You’ve Learned

Deborah Tannen, It Begins at the Beginning

Reflecting on Writing

Part 2 Writing as a Process

5 Finding and Exploring a Topic

How to Find and Explore a Topic

Decode the Assignment

Find a Good Topic

Narrow Your Topic

Ask Yourself Questions

Map Your Ideas

List Narrower Topics

Explore Your Topic


List and Brainstorm

Ask a Reporter’s Questions


Cluster and Map

Keep a Journal

Write Your Own Topic

Reflecting on Writing

Checklist: Finding a Good Topic

6 Developing a Thesis Statement

How to Develop a Good Thesis Statement

Consider Your Audience and Purpose

Focus on a Single Main Idea

Make Sure Your Thesis Is Neither Too Broad Nor Too Narrow

Make Sure You Can Show, Explain, or Prove Your Thesis

Express Your Thesis Forcefully and Confidently

Place Your Thesis Appropriately

One Student’s Process

Write Your Own Thesis Statement

Reflecting on Writing

Checklist: Writing a Thesis Statement

7 Supporting a Thesis

How to Support a Thesis

Consider Your Audience and Purpose

Prewrite to Find Support

Drop Unrelated Ideas

Select the Best Support Points

Add Supporting Details

Review Your Support

Write Topic Sentences for Your Support Points

Support in Multimodal Compositions

One Student’s Process

Write Your Own Support

Reflecting on Writing

Checklist: Supporting Your Thesis

8 Planning and Drafting a Paper

How to Plan and Draft a Paper

Drafting a Multimodal Project

Arrange Your Ideas

Create an Outline

Draft the Body of the Essay

Write an Introduction

Write a Conclusion

Title Your Essay

One Student’s Process

Write Your Own Draft

Reflecting on Writing

Checklist: Writing a Draft Essay

9 Revising a Draft

How to Revise a Draft

Understand Large-Scale and Small-Scale Revision

Revise Using Peer Review

Revise for Unity

Revise for Support and Detail

Revise for Coherence

One Student’s Process

Revise Your Own Essay

Reflecting on Writing

Checklist: Revising Your Essay

Part 3 Different Types of Writing

10 Essays That Show and Tell: Narration, Illustration, and Description

Showing and Telling

Four Basics of Writing to show and tell

Contexts for Writing To Show and Tell

Main Idea in Writing To Show and Tell

Support and Organization in Writing To Show and Tell

Read and Analyze Writing To Show and Tell

A College Narrative Essay: Jordan Brown, "A Return to Education"

A College Illustration Essay: Tam Nguyen, "Reflection"

A College Description Essay: Kimberly Kirwan, "Volunteering for a Fallen Soldier"

Writing an Essay To Show and Tell

Writing Guide: Writing To Show and Tell

Write a Narrative Essay

Write an Illustration Essay

Write a Description Essay

Writing To Show and Tell in the Real World

Profile of Success: Jenni VanCuren

Professional Narrative Essay: Bill Bryson, "Coming Home"

Professional Illustration Essay: Liza Long, "I Am Adam Lanza’s Mother"

Professional Description Essay: Annie Dillard, "Heaven and Earth in Jest"

Vocabulary to Show and Tell

Reflecting on Writing

Reflect on the Process

Reflect on Future Writing

11 Essays that Analyze and Explain: Process Analysis, Classification, and Definition

Analyzing and Explaining

Four Basics of writing to analyze and explain

Contexts for Writing To Analyze and Explain

Main Idea in Writing To Analyze and Explain

Support and Organization in Writing To Analyze and Explain

Read and Analyze Writing To Analyze and Explain

A College Process Analysis Essay: Katie Horn, "The Beginner’s Guide to Movie Night"

A College Classification Essay: Josef Ameur, "Video Game Genres"

A College Definition Essay: Benjamin Mills, "Of Nerds and Nerdiness"

Writing an Essay to Analyze and Explain

Writing Guide: Writing to Analyze and Explain

Write a Process Analysis Essay

Write a Classification Essay

Write a Definition Essay

Writing to Analyze and Explain in the Real World

Profile of Success: Iza Frechette

Professional Process Analysis Essay: Christopher Mele, "How to Pick the Fastest Line at the Supermarket"

Professional Classification Essay: Phyllis Crème and Mary Lea, "Writing at University"

Professional Definition Essay: Clive Thompson, "Emoji: Think of Them as an Upgrade"

Vocabulary to Analyze and Explain

Reflecting on Writing

Reflect on the Process

Reflect on Future Writing

12 Essays That Reason and Persuade: Compare and Contrast, Cause and Effect, and Argument

Reasoning and Persuading

Four Basics of writing to reason and persuade

Contexts for Writing to Reason and Persuade

Main Idea in Writing to Reason and Persuade

Support and Organization in Writing to Reason and Persuade

Read and Analyze Writing to Reason and Persuade

A College Comparison and Contrast Essay: Rui Dai, "A Whiff of Memory"

A College Cause and Effect Essay: Daniel Langford, "A Dangerous Game of Chance"

A College Argument Essay: Kathryn Arnett, "Media and Advertisement: The New Peer Pressure?"

Writing an Essay to Reason and Persuade

Writing Guide: Writing to Reason and Persuade

Write a Comparison and Contrast Essay

Write a Cause and Effect Essay

Write an Argument Essay

Writing to Reason and Persuade in the Real World

Profile of Success: Tiffany Riggs

Professional Comparison and Contrast Essay: Dave Barry, "Beauty and the Beast"

Professional Cause and Effect Essay: Brent Staples, "Just Walk On By: Black Men and Public Space"

Professional Argument Casebook

Janet Napolitano, "It’s Time to Free Speech on Campus Again"

Lindsay Holmes, "A Quick Lesson on What Trigger Warnings Actually Do"

Vocabulary to Reason and Persuade

Reflecting on Writing

Reflect on the Process

Reflect on Future Writing

Part 4 Researched Writing

13 Doing Research: Preparing to Write a Research Essay

Find Sources

Consult a Librarian

Use Library Resources

Use Other Resources

Interview People

Evaluate Sources

Questions for Evaluating All Sources

Questions for Evaluating Websites

14 Writing the Research Essay: Using Outside Sources

Make a Schedule

Choose a Topic

Avoid Plagiarism

Keep a Running Bibliography

Create Clear, Complete Records of Source Information

Use Summary

Use Paraphrase

Use Direct Quotation

Write a Thesis Statement

Make an Outline

Write Your Essay

Cite and Document Your Sources Using MLA Style

Use In-Text Citations within Your Essay

Use a Works Cited List at the End of Your Essay

Revise and Edit Your Essay

Sample Student Research Essay: Michael McQuiston, "To Be Green or Not to Be Green"

Writing Guide: Research Essay

Reflecting on Writing

Part 5 The Four Most Serious Errors

15 The Basic Sentence: An Overview

The Four Most Serious Errors

The Parts of Speech

The Basic Sentence

Six Basic Sentence Patterns

Editing Practice

16 Fragments: Incomplete Sentences

Understand What Fragments Are

Find and Correct Fragments

Editing Practice

Checklist: Editing for Fragments

17 Run-Ons: Two Sentences Joined Incorrectly

Understand What Run-Ons Are

Find and Correct Run-Ons

Editing Practice

Checklist: Editing for Run-Ons

18 Problems with Subject-Verb Agreement: When Subjects and Verbs Do Not Match

Understand What Subject-Verb Agreement Is

Find and Correct Errors in Subject-Verb Agreement

Editing Practice

Checklist: Editing for Subject-Verb Agreement

19 Verb Problems: Avoiding Mistakes in Verb Tense

Understand What Verb Tense Is

Use Correct Verbs

Editing Practice

Checklist: Editing for Verb Problems

Verb Tense Reference Charts

Reflecting on Writing

Part 6 Other Grammar Concerns

20 Pronouns: Using Substitutes for Nouns

Understand What Pronouns Are

Editing Practice

21 Adjectives and Adverbs: Describing Which One? or How?

Understand What Adjectives and Adverbs Are

Editing Practice

22 Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers: Avoiding Confusing Descriptions

Understand What Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers Are

Editing Practice

23 Coordination and Subordination: Joining Ideas

Understand Coordination and Subordination

Practice Using Coordination and Subordination

Editing Practice

24 Parallelism: Balancing Ideas

Understand What Parallelism Is

Practice Writing Parallel Sentences

Editing Practice

25 Sentence Variety: Putting Rhythm in Your Writing

Understand What Sentence Variety Is

Practice Creating Sentence Variety

Editing Practice

26 Formal English and ESL: Grammar Trouble Spots for Multilingual Students

Basic Sentence Patterns





Reflecting on Writing

Part 7 Word Use

27 Word Choice: Avoiding Language Pitfalls

Understand the Importance of Choosing Words Carefully

Practice Avoiding Four Common Word-Choice Problems

Editing Practice

28 Commonly Confused Words: Avoiding Mistakes with Soundalikes

Understand Why Certain Words Are Commonly Confused

Practice Using Commonly Confused Words Correctly

Editing Practice

Reflecting on Writing

Part 8 Punctuation and Capitalization

29 Commas ( , )

Understand What Commas Do

Practice Using Commas Correctly

Editing Practice

30 Apostrophes ( ’ )

Understand What Apostrophes Do

Practice Using Apostrophes Correctly

Editing Practice

31 Quotation Marks ( " " )

Understand What Quotation Marks Do

Practice Using Quotation Marks Correctly

Editing Practice

32 Other Punctuation ( ; : ( ) – - )

Understand What Punctuation Does

Practice Using Punctuation Correctly

Editing Practice

33 Capitalization: Using Capital Letters

Understand Capitalization

Practice Capitalization

Editing Practice

Reflecting on Writing

Editing Review Tests 1-10


Part 9 Readings for Writers

34 Essays That Show and Tell

Narrative Essays

Langston Hughes, Salvation

Christina Tang-Bernas, \’in-glish\

Illustration Essays

Ashley Graham, Body Shaming

Cyra McFadden, Wait—Perhaps Your Cause Is Already Lost

Definition Essays

Henry Louis Gates, Jr., In the Kitchen

Jill McCorkle, Her Chee-to Heart

Writing to Show and Tell: Linked Readings

35 Essays That Analyze and Explain

Process Analysis Essays

Roy Peter Clark, 8 Writing Lessons from Michelle Obama’s DNC Speech

Nancy Bubel, How to Make a Terrarium

Classification Essays

Amy Tan, Mother Tongue

Martin Luther King Jr., The Ways of Meeting Oppression

Definition Essays

Catherine Rampell, Who Counts as Rich?

Damien Ridge, There’s No Crisis in Masculinity, Only a Narrow Definition of Men

Writing to Analyze and Explain: Linked Readings

36 Essays That Propose and Persuade

Comparison and Contrast Essays

Anne Fadiman, Never Do That To a Book

Amy Chua, Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior

Cause and Effect Essays

Oliver Sacks, Mishearings

Anahad O’Connor, How the Sugar Industry Shifted the Blame to Fat

Argument Casebook

Edward Schlosser, I’m a Liberal Professor, and My Liberal Students Terrify Me

Tom Cutterham, Today’s Students Are Anything But Coddled

Writing to Propose and Persuade: Linked Readings

Reflecting on Reading and Writing

APPENDIX Problem Solving in Writing


Useful Editing and Proofreading Marks

Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

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