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Strategies for Successful Writing, Concise Edition: A Rhetoric and Reader, 10th Edition

By James A. Reinking, Robert A. von der Osten

Published by Pearson

Published Date: Jan 3, 2013


Strategies for Successful Writing keeps instruction brief and to-the-point so that students spend less time reading about writing and more time writing. Instruction delivered through extensive examples helps students see what different strategies look like when applied in real texts.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


To The Student




Chapter 1  Writing: A First Look

The Purposes of Writing

The Audience for Your Writing

The Qualities of Good Writing

Writing and Changing Media

Writing and Ethics


Chapter 2  Strategies for Successful Reading

Orienting Your Reading

A First Reading

Additional Readings

Mastering Reading Problems

Reading to Critique

Reading Assignments Carefully

Reading as a Writer

“The Appeal of the Androgynous Man” by Amy Gross

Writing About What You Read


Chapter 3  Planning and Drafting Your Paper

Understanding the Assignment

Zeroing In on a Topic

Gathering Information

Organizing the Information

Creating an Outline

Developing a Thesis Statement

Writing the First Draft

Case History:  Cell Phone Use Rough Draft


Chapter 4  Revising and Editing Your Paper: Courageous Transformations

Preparing to Revise

Considering the Whole Essay

Case Study:  Cell Phone Use Rough Draft Marked Up

Case Study:  Cell Phone Use Second Draft

Strengthening Paragraph Structure and Development

Sharpening Sentences and Words

Writing the Introduction and Conclusion

Selecting a Title

Peer Evaluation of Drafts

Case History:  The Reasons for College Cell Phone Fever Final Draft

Proofreading Your Draft

Collaborative Writing

Maintaining and Reviewing a Portfolio


Chapter 5  Paragraphs

Characteristics of Effective Paragraphs

Paragraphs with Special Functions


Chapter 6  Effective Sentences

 Sentence Strategies


Chapter 7  Achieving Effective Style and Tone through Word Choice

Selecting the Right Words

Achieving the Desired Rhetorical Effect

Special Stylistic Techniques

Eliminating Flawed Diction


Chapter 8  Narration: Relating Events




Point of View

Key Events


Ethical Issues

Writing a Narrative

Sample Student Essay of Narration: “Joy Through the Tears” by Brittany Coggin

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 9  Description: Presenting Impressions


Sensory Impressions

Dominant Impression

Vantage Point

Selection of Details

Arrangement of Details

Ethical Issues

Writing a Description

Sample Student Essay of Description: “My Serenity” by Rachel Harvey

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 10  Process Analysis: Explaining How

Kinds of Process Analysis Papers

Ethical Issues

Writing a Process Analysis

Sample Student Essay of Process Analysis: “Basic Song Writing Techniques” by Hannah Hill

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 11  Illustration: Making Yourself Clear

Selecting Appropriate Examples

Number of Examples

Organizing the Examples

Ethical Issues

Writing an Illustration

Sample Student Essay of Illustration: “If It Is Worth Doing” by Janice Carlton

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 12  Classification: Grouping into Categories

Selecting Categories

Number of Categories

Developing Categories

Ethical Issues

Writing a Classification

Sample Student Essay of ClassifIcation: “Types of Video Games for Children” by Kyra Glass

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 13  Comparison: Showing Relationships

Selecting Items for Comparison

Developing a Comparison

Organizing a Comparison

Using Analogy

Ethical Issues

Writing a Comparison

Sample Student Essay of Comparison:“Differences Between Korean and English” by Sunho Lee

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 14  Cause and Effect: Explaining Why

Patterns in Causal Analysis

Reasoning Errors in Causal Analysis

Ethical Issues

Writing a Causal Analysis

Sample Student Essay of Cause and Effect: “Why Students Drop Out of College” by Diann Fisher

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 15  Definition: Establishing Boundaries

Types of Definitions

Ethical Issues

Writing an Extended Definition

Sample Student Essay of Definition: “Rediscovering Patriotism” by Peter Wing

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 16  Argument: Convincing Others

The Rational Appeal

Reasoning Strategies

The Emotional Appeal

The Ethical Appeal

Ferreting Out Fallacies

Ethical Issues

Writing an Argument

Sample Student Essay of Argument: “Bottled Troubled Water” by Scott Lemanski

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 17  Mixing the Writing Strategies

Why and How to Mix Strategies

Ethical Issues

Problem/Solution Report

Evaluation Report

Sample Essay Using Several Writing Strategies: “Eating Alone in Restaurants”by Bruce Jay Friedman

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Chapter 18  The Essay Examination

Studying for the Examination

Types of Test Questions

Preparing to Write

Writing the Examination Answer


Chapter 19  Writing About Literature

The Elements of Literature

Ethical Issues

Writing a Paper on Literature

The Writing Procedure

Sample Student Essay on Literature: “Scratchy Wilson: No Cardboard Character" by Wendell Stone

Stepping Up to Synthesis


Electronic Chapter:   Business Letters and Résumés

This chapter, enhanced with fourteen case-based business writing scenarios, appears after the index in the e-Book version of MyWritingLab for this text. If your book did not come packaged with access to MyWritingLab and you wish to gain access, please visit and be sure to specify “e-Book Version.”





“The Perfect Picture” by James Alexander Thom

“Sound and Fury” by Dan Greenburg

“Momma’s Encounter” by Maya Angelou

“The Scholarship Jacket” by Marta Salinas



“When the Full Moon Shines Its Magic over Monument Valley” by John V. Young

*“Seaside Safari” by Kessler Burnett

*”Las Menias” by Michel Foucault


Process Analysis

*“Ground-Source_Heat_Pumps: Mother Earth Will Wrap You in Warmth” by perfect home hvac design

“Let’s Get Vertical!” by Beth Wald

“Can Generation Xers Be Trained? by Shari Caudron



 “Binge Drinking: A Campus Killer” by Sabrina Rubin Erdely

*“Pulling Off the Ultimate Career Makeover” by Douglas Alden Warshaw

*“If You’re Happy and You Know It, Must I Know, Too?” by Judith Newman



“What Are Friends For?” by Marion Winik

“The Men We Carry in Our Minds” by Scott Russell Sanders

“A Tale of Four Learners” by Bernice McCarthy



“Grant and Lee: A Study in Contrasts” by Bruce Catton

* “Invasion of the Bodybuilders” by Chris Lee

“Private Language, Public Language” by Richard Rodriguez

“Art Form for the Digital Age” by Henry Jenkins


Cause and Effect

*“For Cops, Citizen Videos Bring Increased Scrutiny” by Kevin Johnson

“Why We Keep Stuff” by Caroline Knapp

* “The Science of Why We Don’t Believe Science” by Chris Mooney

“Why We Flirt” by Belinda Luscombe and Kate Stinchfield



*“Going Graphic” by James Bucky Carter

 “The Blended Economy” by Marc Zwelling

“Krumping” by Marti Bercaw

*“What Thoreau Knew” by John Shepler



*“Going Nuclear” by Patrick Moore

*“Ten Reasons Why New Nuclear was a Mistake - Even before Fukushima” By Alexis Rowell

*“Teacher Natalie Munroe has a Right to Call Kids Lazy and Rude” by Maressa Brown

*“When Teachers Talk Out of School” by Jonathan Zimmerman

*“A Carefully Crafted Immigration Law in Arizona” by Byron York

*“Immigration Policy Gone Loco” by Conor Friedersdor

“I Have a Dreamby Martin Luther King, Jr.


Mixing the Writing Strategies

“Supermarket Pastoral” by Michael Pollan

*“Back to the Future” by John Phillips Santos

*“Rushdie Runs Afoul of Web’s Real-Name Police” by Somini Sengupta





*new to this edition