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Real Essays Interactive offers practical coverage of essay writing skills in a brief, interactive, and affordable format. The print component offers the essentials of Anker’s accessible writing instruction along with select exercises; additional exercises are available online in LearningCurve, adaptive, game-like quizzing that helps students focus on the material they most need help with. As with all books in the Anker series, Real Essays Interactive motivates students with its message that writing is an essential and achievable skill and encourages students to connect what they learn with their own goals and with the needs and expectations of the larger world.
Susan Anker (BA, MEd, Boston University) brings a unique perspective to the teaching of the developmental writing course. She taught English and developmental writing before entering college publishing, where she worked for eighteen years: as a sales representative and English/ESL editor at Macmillan Publishing Company; as developmental English/ESL editor, executive editor, and editor in chief at St. Martin’s Press; and as vice president and editor in chief for humanities at Houghton Mifflin Company. In each of these positions, she worked with developmental writing instructors and students, maintaining her early interest in the field. Since the publication of the first edition of Real Writing in 1998, Anker has traveled extensively to campuses across the country, continuing her conversations with instructors and students and giving workshops and presentations. She believes that the writing course is, for many students, their first, best opportunity to learn the skills they will need to succeed in college and achieve their goals.
Table of Contents
Part One: College Thinking, Reading, and Writing
1. Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing: Making Connections Critical Thinking Critical Reading Preview the Reading Read the Piece: Find the Main Point and the Support MAIN POINT AND PURPOSE SUPPORT Pause to Think READING ACTIVELY WATCHING FOR LOGICAL FALLACIES Review and Respond A Critical Reader at Work Writing Critically about Readings Summary Analysis Synthesis Evaluation
2. Getting Ready to Write: Form, Process, and Purpose Note: Avoiding Plagiarism Paragraph and Essay Forms Paragraph Structure Essay Structure The Writing Process Audience and Purpose Finding, Narrowing, and Exploring Your Topic Narrowing a Topic ASK YOURSELF QUESTIONS MAP YOUR IDEAS LIST NARROWER TOPICS Exploring Your Topic FREEWRITE LIST AND BRAINSTORM ASK A REPORTER'S QUESTIONS DISCUSS CLUSTER AND MAP USE THE INTERNET KEEP A JOURNAL
3. Organizing Your Main Point and Support: Arranging Your Ideas Thesis Statements Focusing on a Single Main Point Fitting the Size of the Assignment Being Specific Writing a Thesis That You Can Show, Explain, or Prove Being Forceful and Confident Supporting for Your Thesis Key Features of Good Support Generating Support PREWRITE TO FIND SUPPORT DROP UNRELATED IDEAS SELECT THE BEST SUPPORT POINTS Add Supporting Details Review Support Write Topic Sentences for Your Support Points Arrange Your Ideas Chronological Order Spatial Order Order of Importance Make a Plan
4. Drafting and Revising: Putting Your Ideas Together Writing a Draft Draft the Body of the Essay Write an Introduction START WITH A SURPRISING FACT OR IDEA OPEN WITH A QUOTATION GIVE AN EXAMPLE OR TELL A STORY OFFER A STRONG OPINION ASK A QUESTION Write a Conclusion Title Your Essay Sample Student Essay: Draft Revising Your Draft Revise for Unity Revise for Support and Detail Revise for Coherence Sample Student Essay: Revised Peer Reviewing
Part Two: Writing Different Kinds of Essays
5. Narration: Writing That Tells Stories Understand What Narration Is Main Point in Narration Support in Narration Organization in Narration Read and Analyze Narration Narration in College Narration at Work Narration in Everyday Life Write a Narration Essay Writing Guide: Narration
6. Illustration: Writing That Shows Examples Understand What Illustration Is Main Point in Illustration Support in Illustration Organization in Illustration Read and Analyze Illustration Illustration in College Illustration at Work Illustration in Everyday Life Write an Illustration Essay Writing Guide: Illustration
7. Description: Writing That Creates Pictures with Words Understand What Description Is Main Point in Description Support in Description Organization in Description Read and Analyze Description Description in College Description at Work Description in Everyday Life Write a Description Essay Writing Guide: Description
8. Process Analysis: Writing That Explains How Things Happen Understand What Process Analysis Is Main Point in Process Analysis Support in Process Analysis Organization in Process Analysis Read and Analyze Process Analysis Process Analysis in College Process Analysis at Work Process Analysis in Everyday Life Write a Process Analysis Essay Writing Guide: Process Analysis
9. Classification: Writing That Puts Things into Groups Understand What Classification Is Main Point in Classification Support in Classification Organization in Classification Read and Analyze Classification Classification in College Classification at Work Classification in Everyday Life Write a Classification Essay Writing Guide: Classification
10. Definition: Writing That Tells What Something Means Understand What Definition Is Main Point in Definition Support in Definition Organization in Definition Read and Analyze Definition Definition in College Definition at Work Definition in Everyday Life Write a Definition Essay Writing Guide: Definition
11. Comparison and Contrast: Writing That Shows Similarities and Differences Understand What Comparison and Contrast Is Main Point in Comparison and Contrast Support in Comparison and Contrast Organization in Comparison and Contrast Read and Analyze Comparison and Contrast Comparison and Contrast in College Comparison and Contrast at Work Comparison and Contrast in Everyday Life Write Your Own Comparison and Contrast Writing Guide: Comparison and Contrast
12. Cause and Effect: Writing That Explains Reasons or Results Understand What Cause and Effect Is Main Point in Cause and Effect Support in Cause and Effect Organization in Cause and Effect Read and Analyze Cause and Effect Cause and Effect in College Cause and Effect at Work Cause and Effect in Everyday Life Write a Cause and Effect Essay Writing Guide: Cause and Effect
13. Argument: Writing That Persuades Understand What Argument Is Main Point in Argument Support in Argument REASONS AND EVIDENCE OPPOSING POSITIONS FAULTY REASONING Organization in Argument Read and Analyze Argument Argument in College Argument at Work Argument in Everyday Life Write an Argument Essay Writing Guide: Argument
Part Three: Doing Research
14. Research Essays: Using Outside Sources Make a Schedule Choose a Topic Find Sources Library Sources LIBRARIANS BOOKS ONLINE DATABASES/PERIODICAL INDEXES ENCYCLOPEDIAS Other Resources OPEN DATABASES SEARCH ENGINES STATISTICAL SOURCES ONLINE RESEARCH SITES INTERVIEWS Evaluate Sources Questions for Evaluating All Sources WHO IS THE AUTHOR? IS THE SOURCE WELL-KNOWN AND RESPECTED? IS THE SOURCE UP-TO-DATE? IS THE SOURCE UNBIASED? Questions for Evaluating Web Sites Take Careful Notes to Avoid Plagiarism Keep a Running Bibliography Create Clear, Complete Records of Source Information Indirect Quotation: Summary Indirect Quotation: Paraphrase Direct Quotation Write a Thesis Statement Make an Outline Write Your Essay Cite and Document Your Sources Use In-Text Citations within Your Essay Use a Works Cited List at the End of Your Essay DIRECTORY OF MLA WORKS CITED Revise and Edit Your Essay Sample Student Research Essay Writing Guide: Research Essay
Part Four: Grammar, Punctuation, and Mechanics
15. Basic Grammar The Parts of Speech The Basic Sentence Subjects Verbs ACTION VERBS LINKING VERBS HELPING VERBS Complete Thoughts Six Basic English Sentence Patterns SUBJECT-VERB SUBJECT-LINKING VERB-NOUN SUBJECT-LINKING VERB-ADJECTIVE SUBJECT-VERB-ADVERB SUBJECT-VERB-DIRECT OBJECT SUBJECT-VERB-INDIRECT OBJECT-DIRECT OBJECT
16. The Four Most Serious Errors Fragments Fragments That Start with Prepositions Fragments That Start with Dependent Words Fragments That Start with –ing Verb Forms Fragments That Start with to and a Verb Fragments That Are Examples or Explanations Run-Ons Correct Run-on by Adding a Period or a Semicolon Correct Run-on by Adding a Comma and a Coordinating Conjunction Correct Run-on by Adding a Dependent Word Problems with Subject-Verb Agreement The Verb Is a Form of Be, Have, or Do Words Come between the Subject and the Verb PREPOSITIONAL PHRASE BETWEEN THE SUBJECT AND THE VERB DEPENDENT CLAUSE BETWEEN THE SUBJECT AND THE VERB The Sentence Has a Compound Subject The Subject Is an Indefinite Pronoun The Verb Comes before the Subject Problems with Verb Tense Regular Verbs PRESENT TENSE ENDINGS PAST TENSE ENDING Irregular Verbs Past Participles Passive Voice
17. Other Grammar and Style Concerns Pronouns Check for Pronoun Agreement INDEFINITE PRONOUNS COLLECTIVE NOUNS Make Pronoun References Clear AMBIGUOUS OR VAGUE PRONOUN REFERENCE REPETITIOUS PRONOUN REFERENCE Using the Right Type of Pronoun SUBJECT PRONOUNS OBJECT PRONOUNS POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS PRONOUNS USED WITH COMPOUND SUBJECTS AND OBJECTS PRONOUNS USED IN COMPARISONS CHOOSING BETWEEN WHO AND WHOM Make Pronouns Consistent Adjectives and Adverbs Choosing between Adjective and Adverb Forms Adjectives and Adverbs in Comparisons Good, Well, Bad, and Badly Misplaced and Dangling Modifiers Misplaced Modifiers Dangling Modifiers Coordination and Subordination Coordination Subordination Parallelism Sentence Variety Start Some Sentences with Adverbs Join Ideas Using an –ing Verb Form Join Ideas Using an –ed Verb Form Join Ideas Using an Appositive Join Ideas Using an Adjective Clause Word Choice Vague and Abstract Words Slang Wordy Language Clichés
18. Punctuation and Capitalization Commas COMMAS BETWEEN ITEMS IN A SERIES COMMAS BETWEEN COORDINATE ADJECTIVES COMMAS IN COMPOUND SENTENCES COMMAS AFTER INTRODUCTORY WORD GROUPS COMMAS AROUND APPOSITIVES AND INTERRUPTERS COMMAS AROUND ADJECTIVE CLAUSES COMMAS WITH QUOTATION MARKS COMMAS IN ADDRESSES COMMAS IN DATES COMMAS WITH NAMES COMMAS WITH YES OR NO Apostrophes APOSTROPHES TO SHOW OWNERSHIP APOSTROPHES IN CONTRACTIONS APOSTROPHES WITH LETTERS, NUMBERS, AND TIME Quotation Marks QUOTATION MARKS FOR DIRECT QUOTATIONS SETTING OFF A QUOTATION WITHIN ANOTHER QUOTATION NO QUOTATION MARKS FOR INDIRECT QUOTATIONS QUOTATION MARKS FOR CERTAIN TITLES Semicolon SEMICOLONS TO JOIN INDEPENDENT CLAUSES (SENTENCES) SEMICOLONS WHEN ITEMS IN A SERIES CONTAIN COMMAS Colon COLON BEFORE LISTS COLONS BEFORE EXPLANATIONS OR EXAMPLES COLONS IN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENCE Parentheses Dash Hyphen HYPHENS TO JOIN WORDS THAT FORM A SINGLE DESCRIPTION HYPHENS TO DIVIDE A WORD AT THE END OF A LINE Capitalization CAPITALIZATION OF SENTENCES CAPITALIZATION OF NAMES OF SPECIFIC PEOPLE, PLACES, DATES, AND THINGS CAPITALIZATION OF TITLES