Chips and Salsa

Don’t you hate it when you have too much of one and not enough of the other? There has to be the appropriate amount of chips to salsa for it to work, to taste good.

Or Thinking Rhetorically.


Great Images

End of Cisneros’ Stories

The last stories are much more subtle in their messages than the first stories. To understand these stories you need to read carefully, closely, in between the lines. Try to figure out what is the author’s purpose.

  • Why did the author write this?
  • What is the author’s purpose?
  • What is the lesson or message?

There was a Man, There was a Woman (133)

There was a Man, There was a Woman Video


Free Writing

Five minutes of free writing on whatever story you are thinking about writing on. Try to connect to the topic you are thinking about and what the support is going to be. What scenes come to mind?


  • Thematic Interpretation – focus on theme in story or stories
  • Character Analysis – Focus on character
  • Close Reading – Argue for your reading of the story
  • Book Review – Evaluate the merits of a book or story
  • Author Extension – Continue a story, write a new story in the style of Sandra Cisneros, Retell a story from the book.

Sample Essays

The Misfits

Loving a Broken Girl

The Hidden Complexities of Clemencia


You can analyze a character, theme, or any of the items we will discuss in class. Pick something that interests you.

An effective proposal has a narrow focus, clear thesis, includes primary claims, and context for why you think this is important to write about. Make sure you are annotating your book as you read so that you can easily find quotes and sections to include in your analysis paper.


  1. What is your topic?
  2. Why are you writing about this? Why does it interest you?
  3. Do you need to do any research to help with your analysis?