Keys to Successful Writing : Unlocking the Writer Within / Edition 4

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More About This Textbook


Focusing on five "keys" to successful essay writing-purpose, focus, material, structure, and style, Keys to Successful Writing helps readers become better writers by presenting simple, consistently applicable tools and techniques. Engaging professional readings represent a variety of genres. Critical thinking questions after the selections ask readers to make connections between the readings. A diagnostic test helps the reader identify his strengths and weaknesses in grammar and mechanics. Sections of the book include: "Using the Computer," "Options for Writing," "Journal Writing," "Responding to Writing," and "Using Outside Sources." Additional features include Editing Exercises, Service Learning writing options, public speaking and public writing guidance, and ESL coverage. "A Writer's Toolkit" in Part 3 discusses risumis, letters, and writing portfolios. For those interested in developing their writing skills.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205583904
  • Publisher: Longman
  • Publication date: 5/4/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 528
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.13 (h) x 0.86 (d)

Table of Contents

Rhetorical Contents

Thematic Contents

Preface for Instructors

Preface for Students

PART ONE: Exploring the Realm of College Reading and Writing

Chapter 1: Reading, Thinking, and Writing for College

The Reading/Writing Connection

Why We Read

Characteristics of Successful College Writers and Readers


Guidelines for Being an Active Reading Audience

Strategies for Active Reading • Preview the Reading • Use Dictionary Definitions and Contextual Definitions • Annotate • Summarize • Respond in a Journal • Think Critically

Guidelines for Note-taking in the Classroom

Guidelines for Connecting Reading and Writing

Purpose • Focus • Material • Structure • Style

Model with Key Questions

“A LETTER OF COMPLAINT,” Matt Cirillo and Cindy Sharp

Journal Writing: The Reading Log

Box: Using the Computer for College Reading and Writing

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Using Active Reading Strategies

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 2: Defining the Essay and the Composing Process

Characteristics of the Essay


Model with Key Questions

“MATILDA,” Douglas W. Cwiak

Guidelines for Writing the Essay

Purpose • Focus • Material • Structure • Style

An Overview of the Composing Process

Discovering • Drafting • Revising • Polishing • Writer/Audience Response

Box: Strategies for Writers

Journal Writing: Examining Your Composing Process

Box: Using the Computer: Opening a Planning File

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Annotation

“WHAT I HAVE LIVED FOR,” Bertrand Russell

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

One Essay’s Trip through the Composing Process


Chapter 3: Discovering Through Prewriting

Characteristics of Prewriting

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Prewriting

Consider Your Audience • Allow Prewriting Free Rein • Mapping an Essay

Box: Strategies for Prewriting

Journal Writing: Discovery Entry


Box: Using the Computer: Organizing Prewriting

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Discovering Keys for Prewriting

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 4 Finding a Thesis and Drafting

Characteristics of a Thesis Statement

Guidelines for Writing Thesis Statements

Consider Audience in Selecting a Subject • Check for a Controlling Idea • Avoid an Announcement • Use Specific Language • Establish an Appropriate Tone • Test and Reverse • Evaluating Thesis Statements

Box: Strategies for Writing Thesis Statements

Characteristics of Drafting

Model with Key Questions

“DISHONESTY,” Margarita Figueroa

Guidelines for Drafting

Assess Material • Order Material • Begin in the Middle • Outline • Draft in Sections • Define All Terms • Draft Multiple Versions • Reserve Technical Considerations • Share Drafts with Peers

Box: Strategies for Drafting

Journal Writing: From Idea to Essay

Box: Using the Computer: Outlining Your Paper and Visiting Websites

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Practice in Outlining

“STUTTERING TIME,” Edward Hoagland

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 5: Using Body Paragraphs to Develop Essays

Characteristics of Body Paragraphs

Model with Key Questions

“RELATIVITY,” Jeremy Smith

Guidelines for Body Paragraphs

Determine the Paragraph’s Purpose • Use Topic Sentences • Develop Supporting Details • Organize Your Support • Use a Map for Levels of Support • Know When to Paragraph: Some General Rules • Signal Shifts in Thought • Avoid the Unclear “this” and “it” • Repeat Important Words • Use Parallel Sentence Structures

Box: Strategies for Body Paragraphs

Journal Writing: From Idea to Paragraph

Box: Using the Computer: Moving from Prewriting to Paragraphing and Editing

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Peer Editing Body Paragraphs

Box: Strategies for Peer Editing • Box: Critical Thinking in

Connecting Texts

Chapter 6: Creating Effective Introductions and Conclusions

Characteristics of Introductions

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Introductions 113

Hook Your Audience • Introduce the Subject • Establish a Voice and Tone • State the Thesis • Avoid Truisms or Generalized Questions

Box: Strategies for Introductions

Characteristics of Conclusions

Guidelines for Conclusions

Offer Closure • Frame the Essay • Avoid Pitfalls

Box: Strategies for Conclusions

Journal Writing: Experimenting with Voice and Tone

Box: Using the Computer: Crafting Conclusions and Online Research

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Beginnings and Endings

Introductory Paragraphs • Concluding Paragraphs • Questions on

Introductions and Conclusions

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 7: Revising and Polishing the Essay

Characteristics of Revising

Model with Key Questions

“DISHONESTY,” Margarita Figueroa

Guidelines for Revising

Allow Time for Reflection • Use Audience Response: Peer and Instructor Editing • Rethink the Draft • Add to the Draft • Cut What Is Not Working • Make Substitutions • Rearrange Material

Box: Strategies for Revising

Characteristics of Polishing

Model with Key Questions


Comma Rules Chart

Guidelines for Polishing

Reread Your Revised Draft • Use Your Tools to Improve Weak Spots • Use Peer Editing and Instructor Response • Trim and Clarify • Eliminate Wordiness • Insert Cue Words • Create a Captivating Title • Check for Correct Manuscript Format

Box: Strategies for Polishing

Journal Writing: A Revision Dialogue

Box: Using the Computer: Revising and Polishing

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Peer Editing

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 8: Writing with Sources

Characteristics of Source-Based Writings

Model with Key Questions

“BLUE SKY, WHY?” Melissa Lombardi

Guidelines for Writing Essays with Sources

Pose a Question to Launch Your Investigation • Identify Your Audience • Collect Data from Appropriate Sources • Evaluate Your Data • Record Your Data: Three Kinds of Notes • Avoid Plagiarism

Use “The Sandwich” with Your Quotes


Move from Notes to a Plan • Incorporate Sources in Your Draft

Box: Strategies for Essays Using Sources

Journal Writing: Sleuthing Around

Box: Using the Computer: Searching the Net and Citing Sources

Using MLA and APA Format

Options for Writing

Responding to Writing: Dissecting a Student’s

Source-Based Paper

“TV: A BEAUTIFUL CURSE?” Brent Monacelli

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

PART TWO: Exploring Development Options: Choosing Patterns to Fit Purpose

Chapter 9: Writing About Events: Narration and Illustration

Characteristics of Narration

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Writing Narration

Determine Your Purpose • Interview Sources If Helpful • Frame Thesis Around

Significance of the Event • Set the Scene for Your Audience • Choose and

Maintain a Consistent Point of View • Follow a Clear Order • Use Cue Words • Incorporate Descriptive Detail and Specific Action • Use Dialogue If Appropriate

Box: Strategies for Writing Narration

Options for Writing Narration

Journal Writing: The Autobiographical Entry

Characteristics of Illustration

Model with Key Questions

“TRICK OF THE TRADE,” David Redmond

Guidelines for Writing Illustration

Consider Audience and Purpose • Decide on a Point to Illustrate • Choose and Evaluate Examples • Organize Examples to Suit Your Purpose

Box: Strategies for Writing Illustration

Options for Writing Illustration

Box: Using the Computer: Devising and Sharing Narratives

Responding to Writing: Examining Narrative Strategies

“A HANGING,” George Orwell

Responding to Orwell’s Narrative

Responding to Your Own Narrative Draft

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 10 Observing the World: Description and Definition

Characteristics of Description

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Writing Description

Consider Audience and Purpose • Focus Range of Subject • Select Important Details • Follow a Clear Order • Use Vivid Words

Box: Strategies for Writing Description

Options for Writing Description

Characteristics of Definition

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Writing Definition

Consider Audience and Purpose • Determine Range of Subject • Various Kinds of Definition • Follow a Clear Order • Use Precise Words • Avoid Circular Definitions

Box: Strategies for Writing Definitions

Options for Writing Definition

Challenge Option: Combining Patterns

Journal Writing: Sensory Isolation and Word Association

Description • Definition

Box: Using the Computer: Developing Descriptions and Discovering

New Worlds on the Web

Responding to Writing: Comparisons

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 11 Making Connections: Process and Cause/Effect

Characteristics of Process

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Writing Process

Identify Your Purpose and Audience • Focus Your Subject • Structure the Process Using Steps and Cue Words • Explain Every Step with Precise Detail • Maintain a Consistent Tense and Point of View • Define All Necessary Equipment and Terms • Conclude Thoughtfully

Box: Strategies for Writing Process

Options for Writing Essays Using Process

Challenge Option: Combining Patterns

Characteristics of Cause/Effect

Model with Key Questions

“TV AS A CULPRIT,” Swarupa Reddy

Guidelines for Writing Cause/Effect

Determine Purpose and Audience • Focus Your Subject • Sketch Out a Structure: Three Alternate Plans • Connect with Cue Words • Use Specific Details • Avoid Possible Pitfalls

Box: Strategies for Writing Cause/Effect

Options for Writing Cause/Effect

Challenge Option: Combining Patterns

Journal Writing: Connections

Process • Cause/Effect: The Time Line

Box: Using the Computer: Finding Information on the Internet

Responding to Writing: Keeping a Progress Log

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 12 Showing Relationships: Comparison/Contrast and Division/Classification

Characteristics of Comparison/Contrast

Model with Key Questions


Guidelines for Writing Comparison/Contrast

Determine Your Purpose and Audience • Identify Similar Subjects to

Compare or Contrast • Focus Your Subject • Choose Points and Maintain a Balance • Sketch Out a Structure: Two Possible Plans • Use Cue Words

Box: Strategies for Writing Comparison/Contrast

Options for Writing Comparison/Contrast

Challenge Option: Combining Patterns

Characteristics of Division/Classification

Model with Key Questions

“COWORKERS,” Chuks Ofoegbu

Guidelines for Writing Division/Classification

Connect Subject, Audience, and Purpose • Identify a Unifying Principle • Limit Divisions or Categories • Determine a Plan • Polish for Pizzazz

Box: Strategies for Writing Division/Classification

Options for Writing Division/Classification

Challenge Option: Combining Patterns

Journal Writing: Types and Stereotypes

Comparison/Contrast • Division/Classification

Box: Using the Computer: Comparing and Contrasting

Information and Websites

Responding to Writing: A Scavenger Hunt

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

Chapter 13 Taking a Stand: Argument

Characteristics of Argument


Model with Key Questions

“LET’S MIX IT UP,” Brian Villapudua

Guidelines for Writing Argument

Choose a Controversial Subject • Assess Your Audience • Focus Subject with a Reasonable Claim • Choose a Pattern of Development • Use a Variety of Reliable, Current, Audience-Appropriate Evidence • Acknowledge the Opposition • Order the Argument: Two Possible Plans • Use Cue Words to Advance Argument • Include Appropriate, Fair-Minded Appeals • Avoid Logical Fallacies

Box: Strategies for Argumentation

Journal Writing: An Opinion Inventory

Box: Using the Computer: Writing, Developing, and Observing Arguments

Options for Writing Argument

Responding to Writing: Assessing Strategies for Writing Argument

Box: Critical Thinking in Connecting Texts

PART THREE: Exploring Other Options: A Writer’s Toolkit

Unit 1 Timed Writing

Sample Timed Writing

Guidelines for Timed Writing

Make Preparations • Understand the Question

Box: Directives Used in Timed Writing • Allocate Time • Find a Thesis and Sketch a Plan • Draft and Reread • Revise and Polish

“COFFIN NAILS,” Russell Fullerton

Box: Strategies for Timed Writing

Unit 2 Writing about Film and Literature

Box: Key Terms in Film and Literature

Questions for Analyzing Film

Questions for Analyzing Literature

Model Essay



Responding to Poetry

Box: Key Terms in Understanding Poetry


Box: Strategies for Using the Five Keys when Writing About Film and Literature

Unit 3 Connecting with Your Audience: Public Speaking and Writing

Public Speaking

Purpose • Focus • Material • Structure • Style


Public Writing

Living History Project

PART FOUR: Exploring Other Writers: A Collection Of Readings

Thematic Contents

College Community

“Generation 9/11” • Kay Randall

“The Path of Books and Bootstraps” • Jill Leovy

“We’re Lying: Safe Sex and White Lies in the Time of AIDS” • Meghan Daum

Work Community

“Ambition” • Perri Klass

“Zipped Lips” • Barbara Ehrenreich

“Delivering the Goods” • Bonnie Jo Campbell

“The Turning Point” • Craig Swanson

“McDonald’s Is Not Our Kind of Place” • Amitai Etzioni

“Facing Down Abusers” • Im Jung Kwuon

Civic Community

“The Geography of the Imagination” • Guy Davenport

“Grant Wood: American Gothic” (poem) • Jane Yolen

“Offering Euthanasia Can Be an Act of Love” • Derek Humphry

“Who Gets to Choose?” • Jean Nandi

“American Health, Then and Now” • Bryan Williams and Sharon Knight

“Our Biotech Bodies, Ourselves” • James Petkokouris

Writer’s Community

“Welcome to the E-mail Combat Zone” • Patricia T. O’Conner and Stewart Kellerman

“A List of Topics for Writing Practice” • Natalie Goldberg

Family Community

“Whose Eyes Are Those, Whose Nose?” • Margaret Brown

“The Meanings of a Word” • Gloria Naylor

“Crazy for Dysfunction” • Douglas Cruickshank

Global Community

“The Salsa Zone” • Richard Rodriguez

“Illusions are Forever” • Jay Chiat

PART FIVE: Editing Essays: A Concise Handbook

Guide to the Handbook

Diagnostic Test

Diagnostic Test Error Analysis Chart

Reviewing Parts of Speech

Nouns • Pronouns • Verbs • Adjectives • Adverbs • Prepositions • Conjunctions • Interjections

Writing Sentences

Subjects • Verbs • Clauses • Types of Sentences: Simple, Compound, Complex, Compound–Complex

Sentence Combining

Coordination • Subordination

Solving Sentence Problems

Fragments • Run-ons and Comma Splices • Faulty Parallelism • Mixed Construction

Solving Verb Problems

Verb Tenses • Subject/Verb Agreement • Tense Shifts • Voice • Faulty Predication

Solving Pronoun Problems

Pronoun Agreement • Pronoun Case • Pronoun Reference • Pronoun Shift

Solving Adverb and Adjective Problems

Adverb and Adjective Usage • Double Negatives • Faulty Comparison

Solving Modifier Problems

Dangling Modifiers • Misplaced Modifiers

Solving Punctuation Problems

Commas • Semicolons • Colons • End Punctuation • Apostrophes • Quotation Marks • Italics • Hyphens • Dashes • Parentheses • Brackets • Ellipsis Points

Solving Mechanics Problems

Capitalization • Abbreviations • Numbers • Manuscript Format

Solving Spelling Problems

Spelling Rules • Words Frequently Misspelled • Using the Wrong Word

Choosing the Right Word

Common Prepositions

Common Subordinating Conjunctions

Other Irregular Verbs

Solving ESL Problems




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