Please answer the following in regards to your rough draft that you have submitted.  You are required to use full sentences and explain yourself a bit.  Extremely brief and lazy looking responses will receive points that are proportionate to that sort of response…you have been warned!

1. The thesis of a paper is its main purpose…what its comment is upon a particular topic, and/or what it is trying to convince the reader of with the presentation.  What, if anything, is your intended thesis in the paper you wrote/are writing?  If you do not have a thesis, what could it be for the topic that you chose to write upon?  Basically, what is your paper attempting to argue?  Remember, having a topic is not the same as making an argument!

2.  If you have a specific thesis in place already, did it help guide the content of your paper, paragraph by paragraph?  Explain how/how much it influenced your organization, planning, and writing of the body.  If you do not have a thesis in mind, but have a paper written, how much editing/reworking do you think you will need to do to the paper to make its content purposefully support a thesis?

3. If you have a specific thesis in mind, is it directly stated in the paper or is it implied?  If you do not have a thesis in mind, will you insert a specific, directly stated thesis, or rely on it being more implied?  Why do prefer it to be direct, or why do you prefer it to be implied?

4. Remember that descriptive details thing I had I you do near the beginning of the semester?  That was intended to help you slow down and get specific descriptive details into place when you write, because most people think they are being vivid and descriptive, but they are really not.  Does your paper include specific details to help the reader really “see” things in your discussion?  If so, what are some of the more vivid details you think will really “pop” for the reader?  If not, where could you insert more specific description?

5. How confident are you in the grammatical correctness and flow of reading in your paper?  What types of mechanical/grammatical issues tend to be your biggest problem/challenge?  Did you specifically look for these errors in your draft, so you can fix them?

6. Does your paper include direct quotes as support/part of the analysis?  If so, how confident are you in their smooth incorporation into the body of the paper?  If you do not have quotes in place yet, have you planned what/where they will go when you revise the paper?  In either case, how confident are you in proper MLA style citations for those quotes?  Do you know where to go for the proper formatting instructions, whether online or in a book, such as

A Writer’s Reference

?

7. What do you feel your paper’s greatest strength is at this point in its development?  Why?  Explain briefly.

8. What do you feel your paper’s biggest potential weakness is at this point in its development?  Why?  Explain briefly.

9. Compared to the other papers you have written so far this semester, how do you feel this paper stacks up and why?  Is it better than the previous?  Weaker so far?  About the same?

10. Does your paper have a unique title yet?  If so, what is it and why did you choose that?  If not, what do you think the title will be, and why?

11. If you could have any one superpower, what would it be, and why? (Aren’t I odd?)

Essay Self Review
In the text, New Orleans, the author describes the unpleasantness of the environment and the discontentment of the living condition in the area that is prone to the hurricanes and other natural catastrophes. The author explains that there have been aspects of environmental degradation and pollution leading to the changes in the attributes of the ecosystem, for example, “the streams are losing their coherence and turning into swamps.” The place is highly characterized by the occurrence of the hurricanes thereby bringing different problems to the inhabitants including destruction of their properties and also loss of lives. Hurricane can therefore be said to have defined the place.  In the article, The Valley of ashes in the Great Gatsby, a state of absolute hopelessness and poverty is presented. The environment seems unpleasant and in a bad state with cloud ashes in the form of smoke in the sky. The environment is degraded as the rivers produce foul smell. The inhabitants of this place are willing to leave but they still find themselves here due to their low class. The different social class is presented whereby there is a big difference between the rich and the poor.  The two texts therefore vary in content and the message communicated as they are similarities in the message contained and also differences in the authors’ minds.  The similarities in the devastations of the two settings.In both of the texts, the authors show the discontentment of the environment. The environment is unpleasant due to human actions or behavior. In the article, New Orleans, the author describes the environment to be disaster prone and unpleasant for survival. He explains that the rivers have lost their coherence and changed into swampy areas. This shows that the environmental state of the place is not favoring survival. In the other text, the Valley of Ashes, the author describes the atmosphere to have been polluted by the ashes that are described to be leading to the environmental unfriendliness. He says that the ashes are growing like the wheat into the hills and the ridges. The environment has been degraded by the rich who have overinvested on their own development without considering the natural resources or the poor people.  Additionally, the inhabitants of the places in the two stories are suffering. The settings of the story, for example, New Orleans has got many cases of hurricanes thereby making it difficult to live. In the text, New Orleans, the author pities his father who has suffered most of his life from the results of the hurricanes but still finds himself staying around. On the other hand, the text, The Valley of Ashes, the inhabitants are equally suffering. The difference resulting from the social status has made the rich to look down upon the poor thereby making life unbearable for them. In both cases, there is lack of social amenities. In “The Ruins,” the author explains that the hurricanes led to the destruction and the alteration with the resources leading to lack of vital services. The hurricanes have contributed to high number of biodiversity loss. In the other text, “The Valley of Ashes,” the resources are in the hands of the few reach while the other big population is left languishing in poverty. In page 26, it is explained that the passengers on a waiting track can wait as long as about half an hour at the dismal scene.  In both cases, there is the negligence of duty and lack of consideration of the vital services. In The Ruins, the victims of the hurricanes who are injured do not get the required emergency services. The people who should also check onto the matters such as communication network services also do not react in time as required. This causes delays leading to more injuries. The case is similar in the valley of the ash where the few rich are the ones who control all the affairs of the state. Finally, in both of the texts, the victims would like to exit these environments for safety and survival but they are seemingly not able. In the article, “The valley of Ashes,” the unachievable American dream is illustrated by the poor people who wants to move away from their devastating environment to other better places but cannot. There is some aspect of social and moral decay that is hidden in the West. In the text, Myrtle dies in the attempt of running away from the valley of the ashes. It is therefore difficult for the poor people to rise to power since the rich control and influence a lot of resources. The other article similarly illustrate the concept of the desire to escape with the victims still finding themselves in the original environment through the pity the author gives to the father. The father prefers being hunkered at home even during the strong seasons of the hurricanes (Seed et al. 708). The difference in the settings of the articles, “In the Ruins,” and, “The Valley of Ashes” In the article, “In the Ruins,” it seems like the process is continuous and something can be done to reverse the situation. If the people embark on applying the preventive measures of reducing the occurrence of the hurricanes, then the matter could be resolved, even to some extent, even if not all. However, in the article, “The Valley of Ashes, the setting seems to make it clear that a lot of destructions have occurred in the past leading to the cloud of ashes in form of smoke.  Additionally, the problems experienced in the valley of ashes are due to the disparities that exist between the rich and the poor. There exists a greater form of overexploitation between the rich and the poor. The ashes symbolize death, meaning that the poor people left to languish in poverty are likely to perish. However, on the other hand, the problems arising and affecting people in the text, “In the Ruins,” are majorly due to environmental degradation. The destruction of the sea barriers has increased the effects of the natural phenomena such as the hurricanes.  In the article, “In the Ruins, much of the destruction has taken place along the coast. This has led to the high magnitude of the effects of a hurricane while the frequency of occurrence has also increased. This has affected the people leading to relocations and displacements coupled with destruction of properties. However, in the other texts, much of the devastation has occurred in the mainland.  What the author in “In the Ruins” thinks about “The Valley of Ashes.”With the description given in the article, “In the ruins,” the author thinks that the valley of ashes could be a better place to stay in. he believes that there is little or np cases of hurricanes that have caused problems in their place and other places where he has been.  The human or spiritual devastations present in each of the locationsIn the article, “The Valley of Ashes, the forms of human devastation present includes pollution. The author explains that the rich have come up with structures with chimneys that produce a lot of smoke. This symbolizes the industries that do a lot of pollution. The forests and other areas that are also considered of importance to the humans even spiritually have also been destroyed (Fitzgerald 25). In the article, “In the Ruins.” Destruction and degradations have led to the loss of vital services such transport and communication networks. This has facilitated people to suffer in one way or another, and is therefore a human factor.  In the article, “In Praise of the Chain Store, the initial stores and the buildings defined the place and brought about originality in the place. However, the development of the new building has changed the shape of the place. The aesthetic aspect is currently being removed, while the new look may not be friendly and may be prone to collapse when hit by problems such as the hurricanes that have hit places like the New Orleans leading to massive destruction. The author explains that the attraction that was initially present is already lost and that the new buildings make the city looks the same.