Techniques and Purposes of Writing Prose

autobiography
the story of a person’s life written by that person

biography
a book written about a person’s life

case study
an intensive, detailed description and analysis of a single project program, or instructional material in the context of its environment

diary
an account written down each day of what one has done or thought during the day

editorial
the opinions or attitude of the publishers or speaker regarding some subject

argumentative essay
an essay that shows the author’s assertion (opinion, theory, hypothesis) about some phenomenon or phenomena is correct or more truthful than others’

descriptive essay
author describes events and feelings by including images and details showing how things look, sound, smell, taste, or feel (5 senses)

didactic essay
intended to instruct; teacher-like. to expound some moral, political or other teaching.

expository essay
an appeal to reason by using evidence and logic; designed to convey information or explain what is difficult to understand.

formal essay
strict attention to rules, correctness; employs language accepted for dignified use.

informal essay
written mainly for enjoyment; a relaxed expression of opinion, observation, humor or pleasure.

narrative essay
tells a true story

personal essay
prose whose subject is chiefly the writer himself; writing that is focused on the beliefs, feelings, and responses of the writer; informal, familiar, and often colloquial.

persuasive essay
essay concerned with changing the readers’ beliefs or opinions, to persuade them to share writer’s values or conclusions.

audience
the people(s) addressed by a novel, essay, film, play, and other forms of entertainment.

bias
a preference that prevents one from being impartial; prejudice

connotation
an idea that is implied or suggested

denotation
the thing or situation to which a word refers, exclusive of attitude or feelings which the writer or speaker may have

diction
the choice of words used in a literary work to express ideas and feelings

emotional appeal
tries to persuade the reader by using words that appeal to the reader’s emotions instead of to logic or reason

purpose
an anticipated outcome that is intended or that guides planned actions

thesis
the main idea or argument that the author is trying to prove

tone
the author’s attitude to his material or to his audience or both

voice
the distinctive style or manner of expression of an author; a particular quality that distinguishes one person from another; expresses emotion

chronological order
(Time Order) Events are arranged in the order in which they happened

climatic order
The order in which items are arranged in sequence according to their importance, with the most important one last.

cause and effect
cause is the reasons, grounds, motives for an event. the effects are what happens or are produced by a cause; the results

compare and contrast
examination of two or more things to find similarities and differences

pro and con arguments`
the advantages and disadvantages of a subject; the arguments for an against a question

question and information inquiry
a sentence in interrogative form, addressed to someone to get an answer. solution to the question will be provided within the essay

anecdotal evidence
Personal stories about specific incidents and experiences

expert testimony
testimony given by one acknowledged to have specialized training and knowledge in a particular subject

graphic text
information relayed by a graph, diagram or visual image

historical reference
references to history, known to be real or true

illustration
a story, example, comparison, etc. used to make clear or explain something

research
a careful hunting for facts or truth; discover facts by scientific study or subject

statistical evidence
numerical facts about people, the weather, business conditions, etc. systematic collecting and classifying of evidence to show significance

active voice
the form of an action-expressing verb which tells that the subject preforms the action

archaic language
language that is old fashioned

colloquialism
informal words or expressions not usually acceptable in formal writing

dialect
a distinctive variety of language, spoken by members of an identifiable religion group, nation, or social class

formal language
language conforming to a studied style in vocabulary, syntax, and pronunciation, as accepted for dignified use

idiom
an expression whose meanings cannot be inferred from the meanings of the words that make it up

informal language
the language of everyday speech, may use contractions and slang

jargon
vocabulary distinctive to a particular group of people

literal language
A form of language in which writers and speakers mean exactly what their words denote.

objectivity
impersonal, noncommittal approach, without offering judgement

passive voice
the voice used to indicate that the grammatical subject of the verb is the recipient (not the source) of the action denoted by the verb

slang
vocabulary and usage that differ from the standard and that is not usually considered acceptable in formal speech or writing

subjectivity
expression of personal feelings or exigences

analogy
a resemblance or likeness between two different things, sometimes expressed as a simile

irony
a device by which a writer expresses a meaning contradictory to the stated ostensible one

parallelism
the arrangement of equally important ideas in a similar grammatical constructions

rhetorical question
a question asked nor for information but to produce an effect

satire
a literary tone used to ridicule or make fun of human vice or weakness, often with the intent of correcting, or changing, the subject of the satiric attack.

sarcasm
bitter, derisive, expression, frequently involving irony as a device, whereby what is stated is the opposite of what is actually meant.

understatement
the device of presenting something as less significant than it really is

wit
intellectually amusing utterances calculated to delight and surprise