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Notes on the rough draft…. 1. “ This” what ? (This sentiment , this idea , this action …follow “this” with a NOUN) 2. NO CONTRACTIONS ! don’t = do not; can’t = cannot - review your essay and cross them out! 3. Transition sentences between body paragraphs: Keep it GENERAL

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notes on the rough draft
Notes on the rough draft…

1. “This” what?

  • (This sentiment, this idea, this action…follow “this” with a NOUN)

2. NO CONTRACTIONS! don’t = do not; can’t = cannot

- review your essay and cross them out!

3. Transition sentences between body paragraphs: Keep it GENERAL

Ex: While Cyrano depicts relationships in an exaggerated style, works of Realism like A Doll’s House demonstrate the far less glamorous workings of a real marriage.


4. Imbedding and citation reminders:

- the part that is NOT in quotes (your words) must be analytical in nature (meaning, explain how/why that quote is relevant to your thesis).

Ex: Eight years into their marriage, Nora realizes that Torvald, “never loved [her]. [He] thought it fun to be in love with [her],” but in truth, their marriage was for appearances only (Ibsen 1075).

Ex: Hoping to win Roxane’s love, Cyrano solicits Christian’s “conquering physical charm, and together [they] form a hero” that will properly win her over with chivalrous good looks and poetic wit, the consummate romantic hero (Rostand 96).


5. Talk about the plot like it really happened! Avoid “In the play”, “During the balcony scene,” and instead, say, “When Cyrano goes to war, he …” or “In a passionate speech under Roxane’s balcony, Cyrano…”

6. Sample Conclusion:

Both Torvald and Cyrano treasure honor for honor’s sake. The difference is that Torvald’s honor comes to him indirectly, an advantage of his control over others, never actually being earned himself. On the other hand, Cyrano’s strength of character comes from within, requiring no outside assistance. During their lifetimes, both leading men face diversity, but Torvald’s dominating personality relies on others to win, while Cyrano utilizes his won talents to overcome opposition. Torvald’s climb up the social ladder is foremost in his mind, with wealth and power being the ultimate goal, while Cyrano possesses no interest in impressing others, only answering to his own code of honor. Even though Torvald’s grandiose acts may increase his reputation, the more austere lifestyle of Cyrano shows a greater purpose and nobility.


7. Analytical Topic Sentence:

The first sentence of the first body paragraph must tell us WHAT you will prove in this paragraph, not just give plot summary or re-iterate the thesis.

The second body paragraph should begin with EITHER:

  • A general transitional statement, followed by analytical 2nd sentence, OR
  • A transitional sentence that INCLUDES analysis of what this paragraph will prove.

8. Present Verb Tense!

Romanticism depicts exaggerated emotions and actions…

Literature and drama written in a realistic style are…

Cyrano dies with his honor intact.

Nora leaves her family in an effort to define her own code of honor and ethics.