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Many times when I write it is difficult to locate a general theme, or even a clear and precise point. Too often, my papers seem to deviate from the intentional purpose stated in the introduction. The topic and primary idea need to be effectively introduced at the beginning so that the reader knows what to look for and what to expect. Many times, my writing consists of a solid introduction with a good idea, but it wanes as it nears the ending and the conclusion is not effective so as to remain consistent with the proper sequence of the sentence (2-3-1). The reader of my work must distinguish the most important point of the work, understanding the general theme, while remaining captivated by a consistently interesting paper. If a primary point exists, it needs to be expanded, emphasized, or supported. The work needs to remain interesting and captivating throughout. For the reader to infer my opinion on the subject matter, I must show approval or disapproval of it in some way. The results of this personal critique correlate to 101 Dalmatians, 7th Heaven, How to Make an American Quilt written by Whitney Otto, and A River Runs Through It written by Norman Maclean. Each of these works contains a main point, a theme, and this is expanded, emphasized, or supported throughout the plot.
The reader is abruptly introduced to the four texts at the beginning. In A River Runs Through It, Maclean introduces the setting and background of the story more effectively, but he still jumps into the plot by beginning with "In our family, there was no clear line between religion and fly fishing" (1). That first sentence serves as an introduction, yet it is not a typical beginning point. Otto, likewise, begins her novel with instructions; "You need a large wooden frame and enough space to accommodate it" (7). Even though these authors begin their stories by jumping into the plot, the authors do provide sufficient background serving to remove much of the abruptness. The prologues and introductions found in the books explain what is ahead in the plot; much the same way previews and commercials explain the direction of the plot in the television show and movie. The reader and viewer can anticipate the plot and its direction, making the first line a necessary bridge into the story ahead.
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"Whitney Otto's How to Make an American Quilt and Norman Maclean's A River Runs Through It." 123HelpMe.com. 21 Feb 2019
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Through the plot, the author or the writer can expand, emphasize, or support the major points and the theme of the paper. There is a main plot involved in each story line, but there is also an underlying theme that can be inferred from the plot. How to Make an American Quilt is based on love and relationships found in various people in differing circumstances, but the underlying theme is that of the quilt and how it binds the pieces of love and relationships into a whole. The plot of A River Runs Through It consists of Paul’s life and how it affects his family, while the river and its "natural flow" of life are found in the undercurrent of the story. The bulk of the action in 101 Dalmatians is the kidnapping of the puppies, but family togetherness is the subtle theme. 7th Heaven’s plot is centered around the grandfather’s re-marriage, but there are branching story plots involving each character so that those sub-plots infiltrate the primary conflict of re-marriage. The four authors differ in their approach to bolstering the main plot, or major point, in their respective works. They also differ in the way in which they build support, or agreement for their opinion. They implicitly drive the reader or viewer to agree with their opinion not merely through repetition, but also through a series of well-constructed points that expand, emphasize, and support the main point, or the theme. These are developed throughout the movie, television show, and books just as the points are developed in an essay. The themes stem from the plot, and hold the plot together. The general theme, at times, ties together the separated points as the central theme binds the distinct sub-plots of How to Make an American Quilt, 7th Heaven, and 101 Dalmatians. In 101 Dalmatians, the general theme is family togetherness. The general theme of How to Make an American Quilt is the quilt and the pieces of life. 7th Heaven’s theme is disapproval of different situations, mainly Mrs. Camden’s disapproval of her father re-marrying. The prevailing theme of A River Runs Through It is the river and its "natural flow" of life. These examples, seen through the four works, show the author’s use of expansion, emphasis, and support through the use of a theme which can indicate the writer’s own opinion.
The author can write to indicate his/her personal opinions through the approval or disapproval of the plot and the theme. Authors expand, emphasize, and support the point (theme) of the work through the implication of their opinion. Otto seeks to expand her theme of the quilt with the addition of chapters that introduce new quilting instructions and chapters that contain new characters or stories. She seems to show disapproval of various actions taken by the characters by emphasizing other characters’ negative feelings toward that action or that character. For example, Otto seems to disapprove of Hy’s affair with Arthur by allowing the reader to see the full extent of Glady Joe’s anger, and the creation of the wall, a memorial to Glady Joe’s hurt heart.
Otto also allows the reader to see Hy's pretense to her sick husband in the hospital, pretending nothing had happened, and Anna’s dislike for Hy. Maclean supports his story of Paul through examples from Paul's life such as Paul's stubborn refusal to eat oatmeal while still emphasizing certain aspects of Paul's nature through his actions. It is obvious that Maclean approves of Paul and that Paul can do no wrong in his family’s eyes, especially his mother’s. The reader can only infer that Paul is involved in wrong things for Maclean and his family excuse, ignore, or downplay the incidents. 101 Dalmatians expands the theme of family unity by enlarging the dalmatian family and bring the human family and dalmatian family together through the kidnapping crisis. Pongo and Purdy return with eighty three more puppies, and the couple gladly welcomes the addition to the family. 7th Heaven emphasizes its theme of disapproval by filling the episode with various characters and their lack of approval for actions. It also emphasizes the re-marriage by continually reverting to that issue. Mainly, Mrs. Camden disapproves of her father’s re-marriage, yet the grandfather makes the decision to marry despite widespread resistance against it.
In my own writing, I need to work on the introduction of my papers. A point, or a main theme, needs to be introduced so that the paper has direction. This correlates to the four works as they each introduce the plot and the theme in the prologues, introductions, and previews. The plot not only directs the story line, but also implies the theme. Emphasis, expansion, and support are utilized to make the major point. The writers use at least one of these three tools to develop the theme. Therefore, emphasis, expansion, and support are vital tools that the four works employ, and that I should personally implement in my own writing.