How to Write Anything: A Guide and Reference / Edition 2

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Overview

Instructors at hundreds of colleges and universities have turned to How to Write Anything for clear, focused writing advice that gives students just what they need, when they need it. And students love it—because John Ruszkiewicz’s tone makes writing in any genre approachable, with a flexible, rhetorical framework for a range of common academic and real-world genres, and a reference with extra support for writing, research, design, style, and grammar.

The new edition is accompanied and enhanced by LaunchPad for How to Write Anything, an online course space of pre-built units featuring the full e-text, multimodal readings, and adaptive LearningCurve activities to help students hone their understanding of reading and writing. The new edition also gives students more support for writing portfolios, more help working with the concept of genre, and more emphasis on critical reading and writing—all essential to academic success. And you’ll find more teaching ideas and syllabi from the community of teachers led by coauthor Jay Dolmage. The result is everything you need to teach composition in a flexible and highly visual guide, reference, and reader.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781457602436
  • Publisher: Bedford/St. Martin's
  • Publication date: 1/5/2012
  • Format: Spiral Bound
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 704
  • Sales rank: 125,637
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

John J. Ruszkiewicz is a professor at the University of Texas at Austin where he has taught literature, rhetoric, and writing for more than thirty-five years. A winner of the President’s Associates Teaching Excellence Award, he was instrumental in creating the Department of Rhetoric and Writing in 1993 and directed the unit from 2001-05. He has also served as president of the Conference of College Teachers of English (CCTE) of Texas, which gave him its Frances Hernández Teacher—Scholar Award in 2012. For Bedford/St. Martin's, he is coauthor, with Andrea Lunsford, of Everything’s An Argument (6th edition, 2013), and the author of How To Write Anything (2nd edition 2012) and A Reader's Guide to College Writing (2014).
Jay Dolmage is an assistant professor of English at the University of Waterloo. He is the author of Instructor's Manual for How to Write Anything and the coauthor of How to Write Anything: A Guide and Reference with Readings (with John J. Ruszkiewicz) and Disability and the Teaching of Writing (with Cynthia Lewiecki-Wilson and Brenda Jo Brueggemann). He is the coeditor, with Nedra Reynolds, of the new Bedford Bibliography for Teachers of Writing.  He teaches graduate classes in rhetoric and composition pedagogy and has published widely on rhetorical theory and accessible teaching. To hear Jay talk about the readings in How to Write Anything, watch the Bedford/St. Martin’s “Author Talk” video.

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Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Preface 

guide

Part 1 Genres 

1 Narratives 

Deciding to write a narrative 
       *LITERACY NARRATIVE: Allegra Goodman, O.K., You’re Not Shakespeare. Now Get Back to Work
Exploring purpose and topic 
       Brainstorm, freewrite, build lists, and use memory prompts 
       Choose a manageable subject 
Understanding your audience 
        Focus on people 
        Select events that will keep readers engaged 
        Pace the story 
        Adjust your writing to intended readers 
Finding and developing materials 
       Consult documents 
       Consult images 
       Talk to the people involved 
       Trust your experiences 
Creating a structure 
       Consider a simple sequence 
       Build toward a climax 
Choosing a style and design 
       Don’t hesitate to use first person—I 
       Use figures of speech such as similes, metaphors, and analogies to make memorable comparisons 
       In choosing verbs, favor active rather than passive voice 
       Keep the language simple
       Develop major characters through action and dialogue 
       Develop the setting to set the context and mood 
       Use images to tell a story 
Examining models 
       MEMOIR/REFLECTION: Miles Pequeno, Check. Mate? 
       GRAPHIC NARRATIVE (EXCERPT): Marjane Satrapi, from Persepolis 
       ASSIGNMENTS 

2 Reports 

Deciding to write a report 
       Present information 
       Find reliable sources 
       Aim for objectivity 
       Present information clearly 
       *RESEARCH REPORT: Susan Wilcox, Marathons for Women 
Exploring purpose and topic 
       Answer questions 
       Review what is already known about a subject 
       Report new knowledge 
Understanding your audience 
      Suppose you are the expert 
      Suppose you are the novice 
      Suppose you are the peer 
Finding and developing materials 
      Base reports on the best available sources 
      Base reports on multiple sources 
      Fact-check your report 
Creating a structure 
      Organize by date, time, or sequence 
      Organize by magnitude or order of importance 
      Organize by division 
      Organize by classification 
      Organize by position, location, or space 
      Organize by definition 
      Organize by comparison/contrast 
      Organize by thesis statement 
Choosing a style and design 
      Present the facts cleanly 
      Keep out of it 
      Avoid connotative language 
      Pay attention to elements of design 
Examining models 
      *FEATURE STORY: Lev Grossman, From Scroll to Screen  
      *INFOGRAPHIC: The White House, Wind Technologies Market Report 2012 
       ASSIGNMENTS 

3 Arguments 

Deciding to write an argument 
     Offer levelheaded and disputable claims 
     Offer good reasons to support a claim 
     Understand opposing claims and points of view 
     Frame arguments powerfully—and not in words only 
     *ARGUMENT TO ADVANCE A THESIS: Stefan Casso, Worth the Lie 
Exploring purpose and topic 
      Learn much more about your subject 
      State a preliminary claim, if only for yourself 
      Qualify your claim to make it reasonable 
      Examine your core assumptions 
Understanding your audience 
      Consider and control your ethos 
      Consider self-imposed limits 
      Consider the worlds of your readers 
Finding and developing materials 
      List your reasons 
     Assemble your hard evidence 
     Cull the best quotations 
     Find counterarguments 
     Consider emotional appeals 
Creating a structure 
      Make a point or build toward one 
      Spell out what’s at stake
      Address counterpoints when necessary, not in a separate section 
      Hold your best arguments for the end 
Choosing a style and design 
     Invite readers with a strong opening 
     Write vibrant sentences 
     Ask rhetorical questions 
     Use images and design to make a point 
Examining models 
     *REFUTATION ARGUMENT: Bjørn Lomborg, The Limits of Panic 
     *VISUAL ARGUMENT: Matt Bors, Can We Stop Worrying about Millenials Yet? 
      ASSIGNMENTS 

4 Evaluations 
Deciding to write an evaluation 
      Explain your mission 
      Establish and defend criteria 
      Offer convincing evidence 
      Offer worthwhile advice 
      *ARTS REVIEW: Lisa Schwarzbaum, The Hunger Games
Exploring purpose and topic 
      Evaluate a subject you know well 
      Evaluate a subject you need to investigate 
     Evaluate a subject you’d like to know more about 
     Evaluate a subject that’s been on your mind 
Understanding your audience 
     Write for experts 
     Write for a general audience 
     Write for novices 
Finding and developing materials 
     Decide on your criteria 
     Look for hard criteria 
     Argue for criteria that can’t be measured 
     Stand by your values 
     Gather your evidence 
Creating a structure 
     Choose a simple structure when your criteria and categories are predictable 
     Choose a focal point 
     Compare and contrast 
Choosing a style and design 
     Use a high or formal style 
     Use a middle style 
     Use a low style 
     Present evaluations visually 
Examining models 
      SOCIAL SATIRE: Jordyn Brown, A Word from My Anti-Phone Soapbox 
     *PRODUCT REVIEW: Eric Brown, Monsters U.’s Site Might Just Give You “Web-Site Envy”  
     ASSIGNMENTS 

5 Causal Analyses 

Deciding to write a causal analysis 
      Don’t jump to conclusions 
     Appreciate your limits 
     Offer sufficient evidence for claims 
     CAUSAL ANALYSIS: Jonah Goldberg, Global Warming and the Sun 
Exploring purpose and topic 
     Look again at a subject you know well 
     Look for an issue new to you 
    Examine a local issue 
    Choose a challenging subject 
    Tackle an issue that seems settled 
Understanding your audience 
     Create an audience 
     Write to an existing audience 
Finding and developing materials 
     Understand necessary causes 
     Understand sufficient causes 
     Understand precipitating causes 
     Understand proximate causes 
     Understand remote causes 
     Understand reciprocal causes 
Creating a structure 
     Explain why something happened 
     Explain the consequences of a phenomenon 
     Suggest an alternative view of cause and effect 
     Explain a chain of causes 
Choosing a style and design 
     Consider a middle style 
     Adapt the style to the subject matter 
     Use appropriate supporting media 
Examining models 
     *RESEARCH STUDY: Alysha Behn, Where Have All the Women Gone? 
     *CULTURAL ANALYSIS: Lance Hosey, Why We Love Beautiful Things 
      ASSIGNMENTS 

6 Proposals 

Deciding to write a proposal 
     Define a problem 
     Target the proposal 
     Consider reasonable options 
     Make specific recommendations 
     Make realistic recommendations 
     TRIAL BALLOON: Barrett Seaman, How Bingeing Became the New College Sport 179
Exploring purpose and topic 
     Look for a genuine issue 
     Look for a challenging problem 
     Look for a soluble problem 
     Look for a local issue 
Understanding your audience 
    Appeal to people who can make a difference 
    Rally people who represent public opinion 
Finding and developing materials 
    Define the problem 
    Examine prior solutions 
    Outline a proposal 
    Defend the proposal 
    Figure out how to implement the proposal 
Creating a structure 
Choosing a style and design 
     Use a formal style 
     Use a middle style, when appropriate 
     Pay attention to elements of design 
Examining models 
     MANIFESTO: Katelyn Vincent, Technology Time-out 
     *VISUAL PROPOSAL: Jen Sorenson, Loan Bone 
     ASSIGNMENTS

 
7 Literary Analyses 

Deciding to write a literary analysis 
     Begin with a close reading 
     Make a claim or an observation 
     Use texts for evidence 
     Present works in context 
     Draw on previous research 
     *LITERARY INTERPRETATION: William Deresiewicz, What Gatsby’s Really Looking For 
Exploring purpose and topic 
     Choose a text you connect with 
     Choose a text you want to learn more about 
     Choose a text that you don’t understand 
Understanding your audience 
     Clearly identify the author and works you are analyzing 
     Define key terms 
     Don’t aim to please professional critics 
Finding and developing materials 
     Examine the text closely 
     Focus on the text itself 
     Focus on meanings, themes, and interpretations 
     Focus on authorship and history 
     Focus on genre 
     Focus on influence 
     Focus on social connections 
     Find good sources 
Creating a structure 
     Imagine a structure 
     Work on your opening 
Choosing a style and design 
     Use a formal style for most assignments 
     Use a middle style for informal or personal papers 
     Follow the conventions of literary analysis 
     Use appropriate abbreviations 
     Review quotations 
     Cite plays correctly 
     Explore alternative media 
Examining models 
     CLOSE READING: Emily Dickinson, I felt a Funeral, in my Brain 
     Kanaka Sathasivan, Insanity: Two Women 
     PHOTOGRAPHS AS LITERARY TEXTS: Dorothea Lange, Jobless on Edge of Pea Field, Imperial Valley, California 
     Walker Evans, Burroughs Family Cabin, Hale County, Alabama 
     Gordon Parks, American Gothic 
     ASSIGNMENTS 

8 Rhetorical Analyses 
Deciding to write a rhetorical analysis 
     Take words and images seriously 
     Spend time with texts 
     Pay attention to audience 
     Mine texts for evidence 
     *RHETORICAL ANALYSIS: Paula Marantz Cohen, Too Much Information: The Pleasure of Figuring Out Things for Yourself 
Exploring purpose and topic 
     Make a difference 
     Choose a text you can work with 
     Choose a text you can learn more about 
    Choose a text with handles 
    Choose a text you know how to analyze 
Understanding your audience 
Finding and developing materials 
    Consider the ethos of the author 
    Consider how a writer plays to emotions 
    Consider how well reasoned a piece is 
Creating a structure 
     Develop a structure 
Choosing a style and design 
     Consider a high style 
     Consider a middle style 
     Make the text accessible to readers 
Examining models 
    ANALYSIS OF AN ARGUMENT: Matthew James Nance, A Mockery of Justice 
    CULTURAL ANALYSIS: J. Reagan Tankersley, Humankind’s Ouroboros 
    ASSIGNMENTS

 
Part 2 Special Assignments 


9 Essay Examinations 

Understanding essay exams 
     Anticipate the types of questions to be asked 
     Read exam questions carefully 
     Sketch out a plan for your essay(s) 
     Organize your answers strategically 
     Offer strong evidence for your claims 
     Come to a conclusion 
     Keep the tone serious 
Getting the details right 
     Use transitional words and phrases  
     Do a quick check of grammar, mechanics, and spelling 
     Write legibly or print 
Wade Lamb, Plato’s Phaedrus 

10 Position Papers 

Understanding position papers 
     Read the assignment carefully 
     Review the assigned material carefully 
     Mine the texts for evidence   
     Organize the paper sensibly 
Getting the details right 
     Identify key terms and concepts and use them correctly and often 
     Treat your sources appropriately 
     Spell names and concepts correctly 
     Respond to your colleagues’ work 
Heidi Rogers, Triumph of the Lens 

11 Annotated Bibliographies 
Understanding annotated bibliographies 
     Begin with an accurate record of research materials 
     Describe or summarize the content of each item in the bibliography 
     Assess the significance or quality of the work 
     Explain the role the work plays in your research 
Getting the details right 
     Record the information on your sources accurately 
     Follow a single documentation style 
     Keep summaries and assessments brief 
     Follow directions carefully 

12 Synthesis Papers 

Understanding synthesis papers 
     Identify reputable sources on your subject 
     Summarize and paraphrase the works you have identified 
     Look for connections between your sources 
     Acknowledge disagreements and rebuttals 
     Don’t rush to judgment 
    Cite materials that both support and challenge your thesis 
Getting the details right 
     Provide a context for your topic 
     Tell a story 
     Pay attention to language 
     Be sure to document your sources 
Lauren Chiu, Time to Adapt? 

13 E-mails 

Understanding e-mail 
     Explain your purpose clearly and logically 
     Tell readers what you want them to do 
     Write for intended and unintended audiences 
     Keep your messages brief 
     Distribute your messages sensibly 
Getting the details right 
     Choose a sensible subject line 
     Arrange your text sensibly 
    Check the recipient list before you hit send 
     Include an appropriate signature 
     Use standard grammar 
     Have a sensible e-mail address 
     Don’t be a pain 
*Ima Steudant, Writing Center Course Eligibility 

14 Business Letters 
Understanding business letters 
     Explain your purpose clearly and logically 
     Tell readers what you want them to do 
     Write for your audience 
     Keep the letter focused and brief 
     Follow a conventional form 
Getting the details right 
    Use consistent margins and spacing 
    Finesse the greeting 
    Distribute copies of your letter sensibly 
    Spell everything right 
    Photocopy the letter as a record 
    Fold the letter correctly and send it in a suitable envelope 
    Don’t forget the promised enclosures 
Nancy Linn, Cover Letter 
John Humbert, To Home Design Magazine 

15 Résumés 
Understanding résumés 
     Gather the necessary information 
     Decide on appropriate categories 
    Arrange the information within categories in reverse chronological order 
    Design pages that are easy to read 
Getting the details right 
    Proofread every line in the résumé several times 
    Don’t leave unexplained gaps in your education or work career 
    Be consistent 
    Protect your personal data 
    Look for help 
Andrea Palladino, Résumé 

16 Personal Statements 
Understanding personal statements 
    Read the essay prompt carefully 
    Decide on a focus or theme 
    Be realistic about your audience
    Organize the piece strategically 
    Try a high or middle style 
Getting the details right 
    Don’t get too artsy 
    Use common sense 
    Compose the statement yourself 
    Michael Villaverde, Application Essay for Academic Service Partnership Foundation Internship 

17 Writing Portfolios 
Understanding writing portfolios 
     Take charge of the portfolio assignment 
     Appreciate the audiences for a portfolio 
     Present authentic materials 
     Take reflections seriously 
Getting the details right 
     Polish your portfolio 
     Understand the portfolio activities 
     Give honest feedback to colleagues 
     Take advantage of multimedia 

18 Oral Reports 
Understanding oral reports 
     Know your stuff 
     Organize your presentation 
     Keep your audience on track 
     Use your voice and body 
     Adapt your material to the time available 
     Practice your talk 
     Prepare for the occasion 
Getting the details right 
     Be certain you need presentation software 
     Use slides to introduce points, not cover them 
     Use a simple and consistent design 
     Consider alternatives to slide-based presentations 
Terri Sagastume, Presentation on Edenlawn Estates 

reference

Part 3 Ideas 

19 Brainstorming 

Find routines that support thinking 
Build from lists 
Map your ideas 
Try freewriting 
Use memory prompts 
Search online for your ideas 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Browse for Ideas 

20 Smart Reading 

Read to deepen what you already know 
Read above your level of knowledge 
Read what makes you uncomfortable 
Read against the grain 
Read slowly 
Annotate what you read 

21 Critical Thinking 

Think in terms of claims and reasons 
Think in terms of premises and assumptions 
Think in terms of evidence 
Anticipate objections 
Avoid logical fallacies 

22 Experts 

Talk with your instructor 
Take your ideas to the writing center 
Find local experts 
Check with librarians 
Chat with peers 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Use the Writing Center 

23 Writer’s Block 

Break the project into parts 
Set manageable goals 
Create a calendar 
Limit distractions 
Do the parts you like first 
Write a zero draft 
Reward yourself 

Part 4 Shaping & Drafting 

24 Thesis 

Compose a complete sentence 
Make a significant claim or assertion 
Write a declarative sentence, not a question 
Expect your thesis to mature 
Introduce a thesis early in a project 
Or state a thesis late in a project 
Write a thesis to fit your audience and purpose 

25 Strategies 

Use description to set a scene 
Use division to divide a subject 
Use classification to sort objects or ideas by consistent principles 
Use definition to clarify meaning 
Use comparison and contrast to show similarity and difference 

26 Organization 

Examine model documents 
Sketch out a plan or sequence 
Provide cues or signals for readers 
Deliver on your commitments 

27 Outlines 

Start with scratch outlines 
List key ideas 
Look for relationships 
Subordinate ideas 
Decide on a sequence 
Move up to a formal outline 

28 Paragraphs 

Make sure paragraphs lead somewhere 
Develop ideas adequately 
Organize paragraphs logically 
Use paragraphs to manage transitions 
Design paragraphs for readability 

29 Transitions 

Use appropriate transitional words and phrases 
Use the right word or phrase to show time or sequence 
Use sentence structure to connect ideas 
Pay attention to nouns and pronouns 
Use synonyms 
Use physical devices for transitions 
Read a draft aloud to locate weak transitions 

30 Introductions and Conclusions 

Shape an introduction 
Draw a conclusion 

31 Titles 

Use titles to focus documents 
Create searchable titles 
Avoid whimsical or suggestive titles 
Capitalize and punctuate titles carefully 

Part 5 Style 

32 High, Middle, and Low Style 

Use high style for formal, scientific, and scholarly writing 
Use middle style for personal, argumentative, and some academic writing 
Use a low style for personal, informal, and even playful writing 

33 Inclusive and Culturally Sensitive Style 

Avoid expressions that stereotype genders or sexual orientation 
Avoid expressions that stereotype races, ethnic groups, or religious groups 
Treat all people with respect 
Avoid sensational language 

34 Vigorous, Clear, Economical Style 

Build sentences around specific and tangible subjects and objects 
Prefer specific nouns and noun phrases to abstract ones 
Avoid sprawling phrases 
Avoid sentences with long windups 
Favor simple, active verbs 
Avoid strings of prepositional phrases 
Don’t repeat key words close together 
Avoid doublings 
Turn clauses into more direct modifiers 
Cut introductory expressions such as it is and there is/are when you can 
Vary your sentence lengths and structures 
Read what you have written aloud 
Cut a first draft by 25 percent—or more 

Part 6 Revising & Editing 

35 Revising Your Own Work 

Revise to see the big picture 
Edit to make the paper flow 
Edit to get the details right 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Revise Your Work 

36 Peer Editing 

Peer edit the same way you revise your own work 
Be specific in identifying problems or opportunities 
Offer suggestions for improvement 
Praise what is genuinely good in the paper 
Use proofreading symbols 
Keep comments tactful 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Insert a Comment in a Word Document 

Part 7 Research & Sources 

37 Beginning Your Research 

Know your assignment 
Come up with a plan 
Find a manageable topic 
Ask for help 
Distinguish between primary and secondary sources 
Record every source you examine 
Prepare a topic proposal 

38 Finding Print and Online Sources 

Search libraries strategically 
Explore library reference tools 
Use professional databases 
Explore the internet 

39 Doing Field Research 

Interview people with unique knowledge of your subject 
Make careful and verifiable observations 
Learn more about fieldwork 

40 Evaluating Sources 

Preview source materials for their key features and strategies 
Check who published or produced the source 
Check who wrote a work 
Consider the audience for a source 
Establish how current a source is 
Check the source’s documentation 

41 Annotating Sources 

Annotate sources to understand them 
Read sources to identify claims 
Read sources to understand assumptions 
Read sources to find evidence 
Record your personal reactions to source material 

42 Summarizing Sources 

Prepare a summary for every item you examine in a project 
Use a summary to recap what a writer has said 
Be sure your summary is accurate and complete 
Use a summary to record your take on a source 
Use summaries to prepare an annotated bibliography 

43 Paraphrasing Sources 

Identify the key claims and structure of the source 
Track the source faithfully 
Record key pieces of evidence 
Be certain your notes are entirely in your own words 
Avoid misleading or inaccurate paraphrasing 
Use your paraphrases to synthesize sources 

44 Incorporating Sources into Your Work 

Cue the reader in some way whenever you introduce borrowed material, whether it is summarized, paraphrased, or quoted directly 
Select an appropriate “verb of attribution” to frame borrowed material 
Use ellipsis marks [ . . . ] to shorten a lengthy quotation 
Use brackets [ ] to insert explanatory material into a quotation 
Use ellipsis marks, brackets, and other devices to make quoted materials suit the grammar of your sentences 
Use [sic] to signal an obvious error in quoted material 

45 Documenting Sources 

Understand the point of documentation 
Understand what you accomplish through documentation 

46 MLA Documentation and Format 

Document sources according to convention 
MLA in-text citation 
MLA works cited entries 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Cite from a Book 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Cite from a Magazine 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Cite from a Web Site 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Cite from a Database 
Sample MLA pages 

47 APA Documentation and Format 

APA in-text citation 
APA reference entries 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Cite from a Web Site 
VISUAL TUTORIAL: How to Cite from a Database 
Sample APA pages 

Part 8 Media & Design 

48 Understanding Digital Media 

Choose a media format based on what you hope to accomplish 
Use social networks and blogs to create communities 
Create Web sites to share information 
Use wikis to collaborate with others 
Make podcasts to share audio files 
Use maps to position ideas 
Make videos to show and tell 
Use appropriate digital formats 
Edit and save digital elements  
Respect copyrights 

49 Tables, Graphs, and Infographics 

Use tables to present statistical data 
Use line graphs to display changes or trends 
Use bar and column graphs to plot relationships within sets of data 
Use pie charts to display proportions 
Explore the possibilities of infographics 

50 Designing Print and Online Documents 

Understand the power of images 
Keep page designs simple and uncluttered 
Keep the design logical and consistent 
Keep the design balanced 
Use templates sensibly 
Coordinate your colors 
Use headings if needed 
Choose appropriate fonts 

Part 9 Common Errors 

51 Capitalization 

Capitalize the names of ethnic, religious, and political groups 
Capitalize modifiers formed from proper nouns 
Capitalize all words in titles except prepositions, articles, or conjunctions 
Take care with compass points, directions, and specific geographical areas 
Understand academic conventions 
Capitalize months, days, holidays, and historical periods 

52 Apostrophes 

Use apostrophes to form the possessive 
Use apostrophes in contractions 
Don’t use apostrophes with possessive pronouns 

53 Commas 

Use a comma and a coordinating conjunction to join two independent clauses 
Use a comma after an introductory word group 
Use commas with common transitional words and phrases 
Put commas around nonrestrictive (that is, nonessential) elements 
Use commas to separate items in a series 
Do not use commas to separate compound verbs 
Do not use a comma between subject and verb 
Do not use commas to set off restrictive elements 

54 Comma Splices, Run-ons, and Fragments 

Identify comma splices and run-ons 
Fix comma splices and run-ons 
Identify sentence fragments 
Fix sentence fragments in your work 
Watch for fragments in the following situations 
Use deliberate fragments only in appropriate situations 

55 Subject/Verb Agreement 

Be sure the verb agrees with its real subject 
In most cases, treat multiple subjects joined by and as plural 
When compound subjects are linked by either . . . or or neither . . . nor, make the verb agree with the nearer part of the subject 
Confirm whether an indefinite pronoun is singular, plural, or variable 
Be consistent with collective nouns 

56 Irregular Verbs 

57 Pronoun/Antecedent Agreement 

Check the number of indefinite pronouns 
Correct sexist pronoun usage 
Treat collective nouns consistently 

58 Pronoun Reference 

Clarify confusing pronoun antecedents 
Make sure a pronoun has a plausible antecedent 
Be certain that the antecedent of this, that, or which isn’t vague 

59 Pronoun Case 

Use the subjective case for pronouns that are subjects 
Use the objective case for pronouns that are objects 
Use whom when appropriate 
Finish comparisons to determine the right case 
Don’t be misled by an appositive 

60 Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers 

Position modifiers close to the words they modify 
Place adverbs such as only, almost, especially, and even carefully 
Don’t allow a modifier to dangle 

61 Parallelism 

When possible, make compound items parallel 
Keep items in a series parallel 
Keep headings and lists parallel 

reader

Part 10 Readings 

62 Narratives: Readings

 *Genre Moves: LITERACY NARRATIVE (EXCERPT): Amy Tan, from Mother Tongue 
*NARRATIVE: Patton Oswalt, Zombie Spaceship Wasteland 
GRAPHIC NARRATIVE (EXCERPT): Lynda Barry, Lost and Found 
REFLECTION: Naomi Shihab Nye, Mint Snowball 
MEMOIR: Ira Sukrungruang, Chop Suey 
LITERACY NARRATIVE: Jonathan Franzen, The Comfort Zone 

63 Reports: Readings 

*Genre Moves: DESCRIPTIVE REPORT (EXCERPT): N. Scott Momaday, from The Way to Rainy Mountain
*REPORT: Kamakshi Ayyar, Cosmic Postcards: The Adventures of an Armchair Astronaut 
*INFORMATIVE REPORT: Steve Silberman, Neurodiversity Rewires Conventional Thinking about Brains 
*INFORMATIVE REPORT: Ross Perlin, Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom
LEGAL REPORT: Philip Deloria, The Cherokee Nation Decision 
*GRAPHIC REPORT: Mark Graham and Stefano De Sabbata, The Age of Internet Empires 

64 Arguments: Readings 

*Genre Moves: ARGUMENTATIVE SPEECH (EXCERPT): Sojourner Truth, from Ain’t I a Woman?
EDITORIAL: Maureen Dowd, Don’t Send in the Clones 
*ARGUMENTATIVE ARTICLE: Jeff Wise, The Sad Science of Hipsterism 
ARGUMENT FOR CHANGE: Emily Bazelon, Hitting Bottom: Why America Should Outlaw Spanking 
ANALYSIS OF CULTURAL VALUES: Poranee Natadecha-Sponsel, The Young, the Rich, and the Famous: Individualism as an American Cultural Value 
POLICY ARGUMENT: Daniel Engber, Glutton Intolerance 

65 Evaluations: Readings 

*Genre Moves: EVALUATION (EXCERPT): Naomi Klein, from No Logo
*TELEVISION REVIEW: Emily Nussbaum, To Stir, with Love  
SCIENTIFIC EVALUATION: Michio Kaku, Force Fields 
*MUSIC REVIEW: Sasha Frere-Jones, The Next Day 
TELEVISION REVIEW: Nelle Engoron, Why "Mad Men" Is Bad for Women 
*MEDIA ANALYSIS: Leigh Alexander, Domino’s, The Pizza that Never Sleeps

66 Causal Analyses: Readings 

*Genre Moves: DESCRIPTIVE REPORT (EXCERPT): James Baldwin, from If Black English Isn’t a Language, Then Tell Me, What Is?
*TECHNOLOGY ANALYSIS: Rita King, How Twitter is Reshaping the Future of Storytelling 
CULTURAL ANALYSIS: Natalie Angier, Almost Before We Spoke, We Swore 
CULTURAL ANALYSIS: Alex Williams, Here I Am Taking My Own Picture 
*CAUSAL ANALYSIS: Robert Gehl, A History of Like 
EXPLORATORY ESSAY: Tricia Rose, Hip Hop Causes Violence 

67 Proposals: Readings 

*Genre Moves: PROPOSAL (EXCERPT): Rachel Carson, from The Obligation to Endure
*PROPOSAL FOR CHANGE: Michael Todd, Is That Plastic in Your Trash a Hazard? 
*PROPOSAL FOR CHANGE: Jane McGonigal, Video Games: An Hour a Day Is Key to Success in Life 
*PROPOSAL FOR CHANGE: Neil deGrasse Tyson, The Cosmic Perspective
SATIRICAL PROPOSAL: Kembrew McLeod, A Modest Free Market Proposal for Education Reform 
PROPOSAL FOR CHANGE: Peter Singer, “One Person, One Share” of the Atmosphere 

68 Literary Analyses: Readings 

*Genre Moves: LITERARY ANALYSIS (EXCERPT): Gloria Naylor, from The Meanings of a Word
FORMAL ANALYSIS: Adam Bradley, Rap Poetry 101 
*TEXTUAL ANALYSIS: Zadie Smith, Their Eyes Were Watching God: What Does Soulful Mean? 
TEXTUAL ANALYSIS:
Joni Mitchell,
Woodstock” (song lyrics) 
Camille Paglia,Woodstock” 
HISTORICAL ANALYSIS: Sara Buttsworth, CinderBella: Twilight, Fairy Tales, and the Twenty-First-Century American Dream 
CULTURAL ANALYSIS: Gish Jen, Holden Raises Hell 

69 Rhetorical Analyses: Readings 

*Genre Moves: RHETORICAL ANALYSIS (EXCERPT): Susan Sontag, from Notes on “Camp”
DISCOURSE ANALYSIS: Deborah Tannen, Oh, Mom. Oh, Honey.: Why Do You Have to Say That? 
ANALYSIS OF AN ADVERTISEMENT: Stanley Fish, The Other Car 
CULTURAL ANALYSIS: Laurie Fendrich, The Beauty of the Platitude 
*FILM ANALYSIS: Daniel D’Addario, Johnny Depp’s Tonto Misstep: Race and The Lone Ranger 
ANALYSIS OF AN ADVERTISEMENT: Caroline Leader, Dudes Come Clean: Negotiating a Space for Men in Household Cleaner Commercials 

Index 

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