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Prewriting: Taking a small notebook or a laptop with you, go to some public place such as a bus station, airport terminal, crowded supermarket, or mall, or even your school commons area. You need to select a place busy enough for you to observe and take notes without attracting your subject’s attention.
Look around and choose a person who looks interesting. Observe this person as closely as you can without letting the person know that he or she is being observed. Take detailed notes about your subject. First, write down a general description such as one you might give to someone who was looking for him or her. Then do the detective work: catalog every detail you can find from which some inference might be made about occupation, financial status, family status, personal habits, home life, and so on. Watch for revealing actions as well as appearances.
Writing, Revising, Editing, and Publishing: Now, organize your notes and write an intensive description of the person, including all your inferences based on the senses of sight and hearing and the evidence to support them.
Next, organize your essay into paragraphs, each one based on a generalization. Please note that generalizations on which paragraphs and essays are based are topic sentences because they represent the topic, or focus, of the paragraph or essay.
Your essay should begin with a paragraph of general description. The generalization that begins this introductory paragraph should reflect the impression the person gives at first glance; for example, “He is a tall, neatly dressed man who probably works indoors.” Then round out the paragraph with the simple physical facts that support this generalization, such as height, weight, complexion, and kind of clothes.
Next, write two or three paragraphs, each one stating an inference which is well supported by facts about the person’s appearance, his movements, facial expressions and reactions to things around him. Unify each paragraph by putting in only material that supports each generalization, and try to give full and convincing evidence for each of these inferences.
At the end of your description, add a brief concluding paragraph in which you summarize the inferences you have made about the person. This will help to emphasize the point of the writing. Remember to use Chart 2 and Chart 3 to prepare you final essay. (29 points)
Your instructor will be grading you on these key points:
Save your file in one of the following formats: .rtf, .doc or .docx .