Writing a Fiction Analysis Essay Assignment
1 Choose a story and topic. What story stands out to you the most? What aspect of the story do you mind meaningful? Stories that stir your emotions are good – but try to avoid focusing on things like what you would have done in the same situation, or why you like or dislike a character.
Develop a draft thesis. Make a strong claim that is arguable (not a fact), supportable (not overly opinionated), and significant. Consider what question you’ll answer while you write your essay. Some thesis statements are statements of theme (The story illustrates that point…) and others focus on the use of literary devices (This story employs symbolism and imagery to create…).
Create a plan for your paragraphs. Avoid summary – always. Decide what purpose each paragraph will have: will it focus on a literary device? A character? Even an informal outline can help you organize your ideas and keep your essay structured.
Write a draft. Don’t summarize. Think about your thesis and what point you are working to support. Remember each paragraphs’ purpose, and don’t worry about details and small mistakes. Give yourself time to edit and revise later, and spend the drafting process getting your ideas out, finding and incorporating quotes and summary, and taking notes for citations.
Revise your essay. Test your thesis – did you stay dedicated to it throughout? Examine your paragraphs – does each have a clear focus and does each relate to your thesis? Are your quotes and summaries incorporated into your essay? Do you cite everything you used from the story or another source?
Edit your sentences. If you aren’t sure about punctuation or word use, check or ask for help. This is the time to think about the small things, and to make sure your writing is clear, sentence by sentence.
Proofread and format. Read it over once again, and think about having someone else look at it, too. Make sure your paper is in MLA format – check your heading, your citations, your margins, your font. Make sure there aren’t extra spaces between paragraphs. Ensure that your paper is the correct file type.