Compositional Risks for PERSUASIVE Writing A compositional risk occurs when a writer uses language in an unusual way to create a desired effect on the reader. THESE ARE SOME EXAMPLES OF COMPOSITIONAL RISKS. 1. Rhetorical question – a question you ask to give more emphasis to the point you’re trying to make Example: “Would you want to wear the same exact clothes to work every day?” First line of first paragraph or last line of last paragraph –This is the most effective place to use it. 2. Figurative language—This includes similes, metaphors, alliteration, onomatopoeia, and personification. 3. Anecdote – a short account of an interesting or humorous incident that helps prove the point you are trying to make or support the position you have taken on the issue 4 Use a variety of sentences. Some should be short and simple. Short sentences work well to emphasize a point. Some should be of medium length. Some should be more complicated in structure and combine ideas into one sentence. 5. Sophisticated vocabulary and descriptive verbs “The snow blanketed the fields,” instead of “There was snow on the ground.” Use the phrase a “challenging decision” or a “difficult decision” rather than a “big decision.” 6. Connections -- Make connections from the topic of the essay to a book/movie/TV show that you have read or seen in the past. You may also make a connection to some incident or event that has happened in your life. 7. Quote – Use quotes from a famous person, IF there is one that you know that fits the situation. If you are not sure of the exact words, do not use quotation marks. Example: Shakespeare once wrote, “This above all: to thine own self be true.” Shakespeare once wrote that it is important to always be true to yourself. (This is called an indirect quote.) 8. Dialogue—Again, only use dialogue if it fits the context of the essay. 9. Statistics—If you know a statistic that fits, you may use it in the essay. Just be sure that the statistic is BELIEVABLE.