Literary Fiction Comparative Writing Assignment: A Step by Step Guide
Your rough draft is due: Wednesday, Nov. 3 – Note, a rough draft is necessary and helpful to you. You will receive feedback from which to revise and edit your final copy before final submission. Final essay submissions without prior rough draft submission will result in a 20 point reduction.
Paper must be in accordance with MLA format. (Correct heading, running head, double spaced, 12pt. font, 1" margins, proper quotation citations) Power Point Example, click on the following: MLA Formatting your Essay.pptx Download MLA Formatting your Essay.pptx
Your assignment is to present a comparison of Updike’s "A & P" (last week’s reading assignment p. 382) to Byatt’s, "A Thing in the Forest".
Your essay must include 5 paragraphs: An introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion. For specific template instructions see “Guidelines/Outline for Literacy Narrative Comparative Essay further down on this assignment guideline page.
Step One: Review "A & P" and "The Thing in the Forest". Carefully go over what you highlighted, underlined, and annotated in each essay to identify what points you found most significant in each one.
Step Two: Decide on what each story’s theme is and how and what symbols each author uses to illustrate how each character changes throughout the story. Focus on the similarities and differences of how each author tells their story using theme and symbolism. Remember, you will need to provide support for the points you make by using examples, illustrations or quotes from each essay.
Step Three: Follow the template below to help you organize your paper. Each prompt’s bulleted point must be worked into a well written paragraph beginning with a topic sentence.
Format for Comparative Essay:
Paragraph One – Introductory Paragraph
- Your introductory paragraph needs to draw your reader in and prepare them for what is to come in your essay. Specify the title of the works, and their author’s names followed by a brief summary of each plot followed by a preview of what you plan to discuss and highlight in your essay.
- How would you describe the plot of the two stories? What’s alike about them? What’s different?
- Mention the characters, the theme and symbolism used in each essay, and areas of significance you will be writing about.
- Conclude your introductory paragraph with your well crafted thesis mentioning what comparisons you will be making. (Highlight your theses statement in bold letters.)
Paragraphs Two, Three, & Four (How you structure the information below is up to you – however, your information should be well organized in a three solid paragraph formation. Since you are comparing, use either "block to block" or, "point to point" format. As a review, descriptions for this is on p. 1060. If you need a refresher on thesis statements and topic sentences you can also find information on p. 1048, & 1056 respectively)
- How would you describe each story’s central theme? What makes them alike? What (internal and external) characteristics do they share? What makes them different? What (internal and external) characteristics differentiate them?
- How would you describe the symbolism in each story? How, does the author use symbols to illustrate the central theme in each story? How are they significant -similar, how are they different?
- How would you describe the resolutions to central themes in each story? In what ways are those resolutions alike? In what ways are they different?
Paragraph Five – Conclusion
- Concluding paragraph must review main points introduced in the thesis statement.
- Paragraph must review main points and highlights discussed throughout the essay focusing on major points of comparison.
- Conclusion with end with a statement that impacts the reader and leaving them with something to think about – possibly suggesting new way to look at the situation.
Step Four: Now that you have decided what to write about, it is time to brainstorm your thoughts for each point.
Step Five: Organize your points and ideas to create an outline following the template provided.
Step Six: Begin writing your draft / revise your draft
Step Seven: Submit your rough draft