Comments generated from reading Speak essays (2005):

See the best of your peers below. Go to their sites and read their work. Learn from their examples.

       We never underline our own titles (unless the work has been published somewhere other than our web sites); also, any underlined text on the web is taken to be a hyperlink by readers, so its best to use italics for all titles.

       Never, never, never separate two sentences with a comma. You have to be able to recognize a complete sentence first. If you put two sentences together with a comma, its called a comma splice and its a bad error. Fix comma splices in these ways:

o       Jim bought bread at the store. He wanted to make sandwiches for lunch. (period and capital letter)

o       Jim bought bread at the store because he wanted to make sandwiches for lunch. (change one sentence to a dependent clause)

o       Jim bought bread at the store, for he wanted to make sandwiches for lunch. (use a comma with a coordinating conjunction: and, but, so, for, and nor)

o       Jim bought bread at the store; he wanted to make sandwiches for lunch. (use a semi colon only when there is a cause/effect relationship, a parallel structure, or when the two sentences have a strong connection in idea)

       Youre is not the same as your. Know them. Also their, there, theyre.

       Paragraphs need topic sentences. Each sentence in the paragraph should belong to that topic.

       When we cite a passage from a novel, we put the page number in parentheses behind our sentence. The period goes after the parentheses. See your skills and style handbook for how to do this.

       Your audience has read this book, probably. You can write as if he/she has.

       Use of semi colons. In general, only use a semi colon ( ; ) between two complete sentences (see above).

       It should go without saying that sentences should be sentences. No sentence fragments. (See? That was an example).

       Weave, dont plop! Use quotations/textual support from the book with a purpose. You cant just put them into your paragraph and let them stand alone. You need to introduce them, give them context and of course, ALWAYS explain their purpose.

      Use third person. Its an authoritative voice (means that third person makes you sound like an authority). Dont use I or you.

 

Exemplars:

Great introductions:

      Carly H.

      Tasha S.

Excellent development (MEAL

      Natalie K.

      Tasha S.

     Sam H.

Great use of quotations:

      Jackie P.

Great conclusions:

      David Y.

     Natalie K.