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HOW TO ANALYZE A WRITER’S CRAFT

How to answer writer's effect analysis questions.

1. Identify the Question:

Writer's effect questions typically ask you to analyze specific words, phrases, or techniques used by the writer. They often follow a similar format, like:

  • "How does the writer's use of [specific word/phrase/technique] affect the reader?"

  • "What effect does the [specific sentence/paragraph/section] have on the reader?"

  • "Discuss the writer's purpose in using [specific element] and its impact on the reader."

2. Understand the Text:

Before analyzing specific elements, make sure you have a solid understanding of the overall text. Read carefully, paying attention to the main ideas, tone, and author's intent.

3. Focus on the "How" and "Why":

The key to answering these questions lies in explaining how the writer uses specific elements and why it creates a particular effect on the reader. Don't just identify the element; explain its significance and impact.

4. Analyze the Element:

  • Identify the specific element: Is it a word choice, imagery, sentence structure, figurative language, or something else?

  • Explain its meaning and connotation: What does the element literally mean, and what additional associations or feelings does it evoke?

  • Connect it to the writer's purpose: How does the element contribute to the overall message or atmosphere the writer wants to create?

  • Analyze its impact on the reader: How does the element make the reader feel, think, or react? Consider aspects like tone, mood, imagery, and engagement.

5. Use Textual Evidence:

Don't just make claims; support your analysis with concrete evidence from the text. Quote relevant passages and explain how they illustrate your points.

6. Avoid Oversimplification:

Resist the urge to provide one-word answers like "sad" or "happy" for the effect. Explain the complexity of the reader's response and how the element contributes to it.

7. Proofread and Refine:

Ensure your answer is clear, concise, and grammatically correct. Re-read to check if you have addressed all aspects of the question and provided sufficient evidence.

Additional Tips:

  • Practice with different texts: The more you analyze, the better you'll understand how writers use language to achieve specific effects.

  • Look for common techniques: Familiarize yourself with common literary devices and their potential impacts on readers.

  • Consider the context: Don't analyze in isolation; consider the element within the context of the text, genre, and audience

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