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The Writer’s Reference Book



Cause and effect essays focus on why things occurred and what happened as a result. Cause and effect essay topics can vary from the personal to the analytic. A writer might discuss what factors led him or her to pursue a career as a writer (reading every day as a child, having a parent who works as a newspaper reporter, always being surrounded by books and writers). Or, a writer may want to analyze what events led up to a protest or riot.

It is important for a cause and effect essay writer to keep in mind that the supporting sentences of an essay are reasons that explain the effect mentioned in the topic sentence. The chart below explains this.

(Topic Sentence)
(Supporting Sentences)
City X has become a “donut hole.” Companies shut down and left town.
City X has become a “donut hole.” Better schools attracted families to move to the suburbs.
City X has become a “donut hole.” As more families moved to the suburbs, places of entertainment and culture popped up in the suburbs as well.
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