Starting With An Illustrative Example

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If when you start working on your draft you have a good idea of what your thesis is going to be, you might start by looking for a relevant example that will catch your readers’ interest.

In the following, see how Craig Stanford uses an example to introduce an essay about the threat posed to mountain gorillas by the territorial wars in the Congo. The opening graphically introduces the reader to Stanford’s topic. It anchors his essay and gives him a point to push off from:

High among the vicuna volcano’s, along the eastern edge of the democratic republic of cancel, there lives a group of gorillas with internal international politics. Day by day and week by week by week they wander thought meadows of bracken fern, eating bamboo and nettles, mating in polygynous groups and fastidiously grooming one another. Although three are only around six hundred mountain gorillas left in the world [...] the gorillas themselves seen unconcerned about that fact. Their most aggressive, most territorial act toward people is to bite a farmer on the behind now and again. (Craig B. Stanford – Gorilla Warfare)

Here’s another example, from a biography of the painter Andrew Wyeth. It opens a chapter on the intense relationship between him and his wife, Betsy:

Nothing has ever truly mattered to Wyeth except his work – not family friends, money, sex, pain, or pride. On the very few occasions when he has sought an intimate relationship, he has intuitively known that it would support and advance his painting. Wyeth once explained, “I have never been interested in women that say, “Andy, I think you are darling. I think that’s a bunch of shift and don’t want it. I think it’s saccharine. Nonsense. Weakening. They want you to take care of them I find it thereby aggravating. Betsy doesn’t have to give a shit about me. I want her to love my work not me. That is the important thing. I’m a very queer man". (Richard Meryman & Andrew Wyeth – A Secret Life)

Other Pages in This Section :

Starting With A Quotation

Starting With An Anecdote

Starting With A Description

Starting With A Summary Paragraph

Successful Writing Index

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