Choosing and Combining Patterns

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You should be a master of choosing and combining patterns. When you’re drafting a piece of writing, it often helps to review the common patterns of organization so you can select one that might work particularly well for your purpose and your audience.

For Example :

If you’re constructing an argument for a hard to convince audience, a cause – and – effect pattern might work well. So could reasoning–from-evidence pattern or assertion and support will do. All of these methods are based on logic and thus appeal to certain kind of reader. At other times, you might want to create a more personal or psychological slant in your writing. Then consider narration or comparison.

But we also know that many experienced writer seldom stop to think how they’re using, but they choose a way to organize instinctively and often they combine two or more patterns in one project. So don’t feel you need to choose a pattern to write by when you start drafting, just know what the patterns are and use them creatively as you work. But when you’re having trouble getting started, it sometimes helps to ask yourself. “Can I find a story to start off with?" Or “what claim am I going to make and how can I support it?

Knowing When You Have An Adequate Draft :

So how do you know when you have an adequate first draft, one you can submit to your instructor or your peer group with a good conscience?

We propose the following criteria:

• Your draft is a good faith effort, one that shows you’ve taken the assignment seriously and shown respect for your readers. Those readers – your instructor and peers – can’t be expected to invest their time responding to a draft in which you’ve invested very little.

• It’s reasonably complete with a central idea that’s fairly well developed. Just an outline or a first paragraph followed by a summary isn’t enough.

• It’s legible and easy to read. Whether you are submitting it online or in a printed copy, make sure it’s double spaced and retable. Be sure that paper copies are dark enough to read and leave some margins for response.

Other Pages in This Section :

Reasoning from Evidence

Assertion and Support


Cause and Effect

Comparison and Contrast



Successful Writing Index

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