Friday, November 24, 2006

Anthology Introduction Outline

Section One—How did this start?

Your first section will be about how the stories in your anthology came about.

¶ 1 How, when and where he was first approached about NPR show

¶ 2 He wasn’t interested at first, but he said he’d think about it

¶ 3 His wife came up with an idea that changed his mind

¶ 4 His wife’s idea was to have other people tell their stories.

**¶ 5 Summary section one, How National Story Project was born.

Questions to get you started—

How did you feel on the first day of class?
When you got your first essay assignment?
When you handed in your first assignment?
When you read or didn’t read your stories?
When you got them back?
What got you motivated to do the work?
What process has each story gone through?
What did you think when you first got the anthology?
When you first read the stories?
When we discussed them in class?

Section Two—What do you look for in a good story? What is the theme of our book?

You second section should be about what makes a good story good, in English 70’s anthology.

You second section should also state the theme of the stories you have read.

**¶ 6 He lays out the mission of the project: To collect true stories. He told the listeners he was looking for true and short stories. Especially those that defied our expectations of the world. True stories that sounded like fiction.

§ What has been the mission of English 70, for you, for the class?

§ You should explain what type of stories we were trying to write in the class. Maybe explain the six traits if it helps.

§ What do you look for in a good story?

¶ 7 He has been flooded with submissions, much more than he thought it would be, and it’s hard to pick.

¶ 8 There have been some disturbed people who have submitted

**¶ 9 States the theme of the entire book: We haven’t been perfect, but we are real.


After reading all the stories from our class and others, what is the theme of our anthology. What is its main message?

Maybe you can draw this out from a story, as Auster does.

A theme is the moral, message or belief expressed by a work of art.

It is like a thesis, only it is often unstated and also, unlike a thesis in an essay, there can be many themes for a single work of art.

Section Three—What have you learned?

**¶ 10 One of the things he’s learned from the stories: how deeply and passionately most of us live within ourselves. Our attachments are ferocious. Our loves overwhelm us…

Explain one lesson you’ve learned from reading the stories, or hearing them read in class.

**¶ 11 Another things he learned from the stories: You have to be willing to admit that you don’t have all the answers. If you think you do, you will never have anything important to say.

Explain a second lesson you’ve learned from reading the stories or hearing them read in class.

**¶ 12 Here’s an example of what I’m talking about:

¶ three paragraph example (indented on page xviii)

Cut and paste an excerpt from one of the stories that helps show the two lessons you’ve learned from the over all process.

Section Four—The Run Down: Facts and synopses.

Your fourth section should be a look at the writers and the stories themselves.

¶ 13 The project moved from the radio to a book idea.

**¶ 14 Some facts about the anthology and discussion of the first and last pieces.

§ How many stories are in our anthology?

§ What is the first story about?

§ What is the last story about?

**¶ 15 More facts about the breakdown of the writers ages/genders etc.

Explain the demographics (breakdown) of English 70—
§ gender,
§ ages,
§ geography,
§ former/current jobs,
§ career goals.

**¶ 16 How the book is organized and an overview of the contents.

Explain the sections Animals/Objects etc

And explain the division of the book into stories from your class and stories from all the classes.

¶ 17 Tries to define what the stories are. Suggests more themes—viet nam, WWII

¶ 18 Selects one story for brief praise.

**¶ 19 Ends with a list of very brief details from many stories and has a good last six lines that sums up the stories over all again.

Pick stories from your class and do the same things Auster does—
remember a brief flash from them as a way of hooking the reader. Try to include as many stories as possible. (all of ‘em would be good)

Then summarize the project in a few well written final thoughts.