2APPEARANCE One inch margins all around the paper HEADING: single spaced, include name, teacher’s surname, class, and dateEX:Ima Good StudentAbernathyBritish Literature, 120 Sept. 2013
3APPEARANCEOn the first page, create the heading and place it on the left side, 1 inch from the top.On subsequent pages, number the pages with your surname and the page number (in upper right corner).Ex: Goodfellow, 3Skip one space between the date and the title.Center the title.Do not bold, underline, or italicize your own title.Do not use your assignment as your title.Do not use the title of the work you are analyzing as your title.Skip one space between the title and the body.
4APPEARANCEUse 10 or 12 point font; use a standard font (I prefer Arial but will accept comparable fonts)IF you quote someone or use her ideas, you must give credit for those ideas. Therefore, you must create a Works Cited page.The Works Cited page must be a separate page. Do not tack it on to the bottom of your paper.
5APPEARANCEThe first word of a paragraph should be indented five spaces.DO NOT skip extra spaces between paragraphs.If you try to make your paper look longer than it is by using larger fonts, bigger margins, long quotes, etc., remember that these practices are blatantly obvious and insult the intelligence of your reader.Honesty is always preferable to subterfuge.
6FIRST PARAGRAPHThe first paragraph must include the title of the work, the author, and the thesis.The thesis should be the last sentence of the introductory paragraph.Obviously, the first paragraph should contain more information. This is, after all, an introductory paragraph and the reader should be introduced to ideas and/or concepts.A good introduction will prepare the reader for the coming thesis and argument.
7STYLE Use standard, formal English. That means no: contractions slang colloquialismschunks of other languages
8TONE Be modest but confident. If you feel that you lack the competency to write on a subject, I certainly don’t want to waste my time reading that paper.But don’t be arrogant, either.Adopt the attitude of one who has read, researched, and thought carefully about the work and has something of interest and importance to communicate.
9THE AUTHORThe first time you reference an author’s name, you must use it in its entirety. After that, use only the author’s last name.Ex: Geoffrey Chaucer, Chaucer; Virginia Woolf, WoolfDo not use honorifics such as Mr., Ms., Mrs., Miss, or Dr.The only exception is Sir for a knighted author.Then use the title ‘Sir’ and the author’s entire name or only his last name without the ‘Sir.’Ex: Sir Thomas Malory, Malory
10PRESENT TENSE A literary work is considered a living thing. Therefore, one always uses the present tense when speaking or writing about literature.Remember: History = Past TenseLiterature = Present Tense
11DO NOTDo not include extensive plot summary. No one would read an analysis of a work with which they were unfamiliar. Plot summary is a waste of my time and your paper.Do not include extensive biographical material about your author. The essay is an analysis of a work, not its creator.
12PARAGRAPHSThe body paragraphs of a paper should be of approximate size.Paragraphs that are too brief indicate undeveloped ideas.Paragraphs that are too long indicate an inability to distinguish important from unimportant points ORThat the writer simply doesn’t know how to construct a paragraph.
13QUOTES Quoting: Quotes should never stand alone. Quotes should be incorporated into your own sentences and the sentence should make sense.Do not end a paragraph with a quote. Use your own words to conclude both paragraph and paper.Do not quote extensively; padded papers are obvious and insulting to your reader’s intelligence.Punctuate quotes correctly.Ex:Most of us have pondered whether “[t]o be or not to be.” (53)
14TRANSITIONIdeally, each sentence of a paper should lead smoothly into the next just asThe last sentence of a paragraph suggests the paragraph to come andThe final sentence of the paper brings the entire paper to a neat and logical conclusion.
15WRITING ERRORS THAT DRIVE ME CRAZY (because you should already know this)
16PRONOUN AGREEMENT AND CLEAR ANTECEDENTS IT is a pronoun and must have a recognizable antecedent.Do not begin a sentence with “it” unless the antecedent is the last word of the preceding sentence.The same rule applies to “this,” “that,” and “there”He/their; one/their; she/their = XXXXXXSingular pronouns must be paired with singular pronouns (or nouns)he/his; one/one’s; she/hersEveryone is a singular noun (everyone/his)Everybody is a plural noun (everybody/their)People are ‘who’ not ‘that’.Ex: I met the writer that wrote that book. NO!I met the writer who wrote that book.
17BAD WRITER, BAD Prepositional phrases Be careful not to string prepositional phrases. They quickly adopt a sing-song rhythm and put your reader to sleep.EX: In the book written by Long, the reader learns that medieval life, with all its problems, was not for the weak in health or spirit.Corrected: Long’s book proves that medieval life was not for those weak of heart or spirit.
18SIT, STAY, WATCH ME Infinitive: a verb + to = Split infinitive : to dance, to sing, to weep, to checkSplit infinitive :“to boldly go” to go boldlyto periodically check to check periodicallyBeginning/ending sentences with prepositions/linking verbsSupposition suppose ifConsistency
19PROBLEMS Circular logic Defining a word with itself Contradicting self Do not pepper your paper with questions. Your job as an analyst is to answer questions, not pose them.
20CIRCULAR WRITING“The Franks were a Germanic tribe living in the region we know as France around the third century. France received its name from the Franks, which is why the name is derived from the word ‘frank.’”
21LINEAR WRITINGFrance derived its name from the Franks, a third century Germanic tribe that inhabited the region.
22Bad Habits Writers Must Break An example is takenThe word holds a meaningThe author displays his thoughtsBeing that (what’s wrong with ‘is’?)Fatty phrases: on the other hand, a lot, I have been led to believe, in some ways, the characters are alike but differentBeginning a sentence with a gerundPlagiarism