How To Write a Reader Response

You are asked to explain and defend your reaction to an assignment.The reader is forced to take responsibility for giving meaning to the text in reader response papers.A good reader response paper will follow a standard essay format that you can easily master, and often these assignments feel open-ended and vague.This guide will show you how to create a well-crafted reader response paper that will impress your instructor and earn you an awesome grade.

Step 1: Before you start, make sure you read the assignment directions.

You should get a list of questions from the assignment.Before you start the assignment, you should know what to look for and how to think about it.Do you like or dislike the text?Can you tell the author’s purpose?Do you agree with the author?Does the text relate to you?How do I know if it’s true?Why not?Does the text agree with you?Did you learn anything from the text?

Step 2: Take the time to read the text.

It is important to read the text thoroughly before writing a good reader response paper.Think about how the text is making you feel.Take a lot of notes.You can save important passages or write down page numbers of key sections in your response.It will save you a lot of time if you take a bit of extra time during this phase.

Step 3: Take what you have read and make a note of it.

It is helpful to take some time to think about the text as a whole, and formulate an overall impression of the work.Did you like it?Did you not like it?Is there something about it that bothered you?This process can be helped if you complete some or all of the sample statements.I think that after reading the text.I feel that…I can see that.I have learned that.

Step 4: Talk about the text with an angle in mind.

A good reader response paper should have a thesis statement.The answer to the question specified in the assignment should become your thesis statement.Your thesis should address your overall impression of the book.Hester Prynne’s story is still relevant even though I found The Scarlett Letter hard to follow at times, and made me think a lot about the effects of publicly shaming people online.Some people think the Old Man and the Sea is a book about failure, but it is actually a story of perseverance that teaches us that success may not always come in the form we expect, and even disasters can lead to positive outcomes.

Step 5: You should outline the essay.

You will need to follow the directions for your specific assignment, but most reader response papers are about 1-2 pages long, and use the following general outline: introduction.Body Paragraphs are 3-4 paragraphs.The parameters of the assignment will affect how you organize these paragraphs.The conclusion is 1 paragraph.

Step 6: Use example passages in your analysis.

Provide examples of the kinds of things you want to talk about in your analysis and support your thesis statement.Is there a key piece of dialogue that captures the personality of the main character?Is there a scene in a movie that reminds you of something from your life, or teaches you how to handle a situation?

Step 7: The introduction should be written.

The introduction should clearly state the name of the text and the author.It should include a description of what the text is about.The introduction should end with a thesis statement or argument.

Step 8: The body paragraphs should be written.

The text and reading questions should be discussed in 3-4 paragraphs.You don’t have to answer all the questions at once.In a way that flows well and makes sense to you, multiple questions can be combined and addressed in a single paragraph.In order to provide an analysis of how you felt about the text, it is helpful to include more information in the first body paragraph.

Step 9: Explain how, why and what.

Think about why the text made you feel a certain way as you write your paper.Don’t just state that the text taught you a lot, give an example of something you actually learned.Remember that a reader response is meant to be personal, so it’s okay to include personal anecdotes and opinions in your analysis.”Forcing Hester Prynne to wear the scarlet “A” reminded me of a time when I was cyber-bullied in eighth grade, and my ” friends” spread rumors about me online where the whole school could see.”

Step 10: Specific examples should be included in your analysis.

Specific examples from the text should be included in each body paragraph.These aren’t all direct quotations.You can describe an event in the text.At the end of The Old Man and the Sea, Manolin promises to once again fish with Santiago, so the old man no longer has to be alone.Santiago’s greatest wish, but it was a different kind of success than he initially set out to achieve.

Step 11: Motivational quotes should be short and sweet.

Make sure to include at least one sentence after each quote explaining how it relates to the point you are making, Resist the temptation to string together multiple multi-line quotes.Santiago said his big fish must be somewhere.After I received my third rejection letter, I kept trying, and eventually I was accepted.Per class directions, make sure to cite your examples.The page numbers of any quotations or specific examples will usually be noted at the end of the sentence.

Step 12: Write the end of the story.

This is one paragraph that summarizes your arguments so far, and brings the reader back to your main point.It’s one last chance to explain to your reader how you see all of your points fit together, which is a great way to think about your conclusion.

Step 13: Proofread, make sure you do it right.

!Make sure you give your paper a thorough once-over, looking for things that don’t make sense.Sometimes it’s hard to see our own mistakes, so it can be helpful to exchange papers with a friend.