Informative Step by Step Guide for Writing a Stellar Narrative Essay
One of the most commonly assigned papers for high school and college students is the narrative essay. Instructors prefer this type of work as it helps the student to improve his or her expression and persuasion. It is meant to show your creativity and character as well as your ability to tell stories in a compelling way. However, as many students have come to realize, telling a great story can be a daunting task. If you have no idea how to proceed with your project, then you are in the right place. In this article, we present detailed coverage of the most important things to consider for an incredible paper.
Table of Contents
- Types of Narrative Essay Organization
- Steps for Writing an Amazing Paper
- Some Good Narrative Essay Topics
- Narrative Essay Outline
- Narrative Essay Examples
- Additional Essay Writing Tips
First… What Is a Narrative Essay?
Before we can look at how to write your paper, you should consider a definition of the main concept. In this respect, a narrative essay is a paper in which the writer tells a story about an experience, events, or interactions that happened to him or her during a specific period. Your instructor will expect a paper with a vivid plot. It is not like the descriptive essay that focuses on offering a vivid image of a person, experience or place without outlining the chain of events. The focus of the narrative essay should be on telling a story about something that happened. Your audience should be able to picture the event and understand your experiences.
Types of Narrative Essay Organization
There are several ways to organize essays, and it helps if you know which one you are required to write. For instance, your instructor may ask for a personal essay, where you choose a story from an event that happened to you. This will be your chance to turn an ordinary experience into a meaningful commentary. You could choose to organize your narration chronologically, presenting your events in the precise order in which they occurred, from first to last.
You could also start your narration from the end or from the middle. Whether you are writing a work of fiction or a personal account, you can start by highlighting an event, before proceeding to indicate the events that led up to that point.
Another option would be to use flashback as a strategy. This is where you start from the present and employ a series of flashbacks that interrupt the present to narrate past experiences or events. Whatever style you use, make sure that your writing flows and that the reader can keep up with your story.
Steps for Writing an Amazing Paper
To complete an outstanding paper quickly, please approach the task as a process, rather than an event. Here are some steps to consider:
Any good paper is written from a plan. Before you can kickstart your creative process, it helps to understand what the assignment requires. First, read and understand the prompt. This type of writing does not need lengthy research and citation of sources. All you need are your memories.
What are you being asked to write about? Your theme for the paper should be interesting not only for your audience, but for you as well. As you consider the right topic, choose an event that you see as memorable. The topic should also be narrow.
The Process of Writing
All the preparation in the world will not help you if you do not start the writing as soon as possible. To beat the writer’s block, some experts suggest freewriting. However, we insist that the best way to get started is by creating and executing a plan. If you make and use an outline and structure, then the process will be much simpler.
As you write, divide the plot into three parts, including the setup, the main body, and the climax, and an enthralling conclusion. The introduction is where you orient your reader to the text. make sure to include some unforeseen twist and pleasant punchline.
Provide information in the first person as this assignment tests your ability to tell a subjective story. It is also a good idea to describe people and places, even though this is not a descriptive essay. This will help your readers follow the story in more detail. Don’t forget to add some spice or zest.
Editing and Proofreading the Paper
It is impossible to deliver a quality paper without dedicating time to eliminate errors and typos. As you write the initial draft, the focus should be on getting your story flowing, without much attention to spelling and sentence structure. However, once this is done, then it is time to refine the work. Here are some useful ideas to help with the editing process:
- Don’t begin immediately after finishing the first draft—take a break before taking a fresh look at the text;
- Avoid jargons and ambiguous phrases;
- Reconsider formatting and structure, ensuring that the story flows seamlessly;
- Check for grammar mistakes and types;
- Consider getting someone to help with proofreading.
Make sure that you provide relevant and vivid detail. Effective narration is all about creating the scene in the mind of the audience as well as the associated mood. Avoid the temptation to load your paper with unnecessary literary symbols. It is also a great idea to use dialogue as a way of giving life to your narration. Most importantly avoid deviating from the main story.
Some Good Narrative Essay Topics
Choosing a topic for your narrative essay is one of the most important steps. This is essentially the process of picking an event in your experience and considering how to describe it in an interesting way. There are two critical considerations at this stage. First, your topic should be about a specific event. Please note that a narrative paper is not about your entire life. It should be about one particular occasion about which you can tell an interesting story. Secondly, choose a topic that can evoke some form of emotion in you and your audience. Choose an event to which you have an emotional connection. These do not have to be pleasant emotions. Here are some considerations:
- Pick a vivid time from your childhood such as the first time you rode a bike;
- Choose a day with a friend that is imprinted in your memory;
- Write about your family;
- Talk about your relationship;
- You most embarrassing experience;
- Consider an event in your student life.
These are just some options to consider for inspiration. The truth is, a narrative essay can be about anything you deem memorable in your life. The secret is in making a great story about it.
How to Write a Narrative Essay Outline? Read On
As is the case with all other forms of academic writing, a narrative essay must be appropriately organized. You need an outline in the same way that a chef needs a recipe. This is essentially a plan of how you intend to proceed with the work. Students who write without any sort of outlining end up rambling and completing a paper that lacks unity and coherence. Please note that you can plan your paper in various ways, but the bottom-line is to indicate the clear transition points.
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Have a clear starting point for the narration, and flow seamlessly towards the climax. Often your paper will take the form of a five-paragraph essay, consisting of an introduction, body, and conclusion. The conclusion is your chance to look back at your writing, summarizing how the events affected you. The most important consideration is to divide the paper into clear points, arranged chronologically, leaving room for transitions. Here are some ideas to consider:
- Before the event —describe the process preceding the event, laying out the setting;
- During —continue into the main event;
- Following —lead your reader towards the conclusion by providing some resolution and starting to wrap things up.
Narrative Essay Examples
Please remember that the content of your narrative essay may vary according to your academic level. For instance, college instructors look at the student’s ability to adapt to different scenarios, capacity to solve problems in a creative way, and the ability to learn from mistakes. To succeed, demonstrate your character and creativity, describing a situation in an unexpected way. Here is an example:
- Narrative Essay Example
- Pepperoni Mashed Potatoes
I had heard it said that people who laugh at their own mistakes can get others to laugh with them. Well, I would soon learn first-hand what that meant.
‘Stay in line,’ said Miss Johnson. I heard her, but the rumbling in my stomach swept away any reasoning or sense of concern. While I doubted whether Naomi would let me cut in line, I still had to try. You see, Naomi is your typical 11th grade bully, with chubby cheeks and a nasty attitude to boot. Every time we met along the corridors, I would retreat into invisibility hoping that I wouldn’t be noticed. But not today. Hunger does things to you.
As I approached, Naomi gave me that look that can melt even the hardest of cheese. I was about to retreat, but that’s when I saw it. Only one tray of the nauseating, grubby mashed potatoes was left. That, and one piece of pepperoni pizza. I knew there and then that I had a choice to make. Face my fears or deal with my hunger pangs. My rumbling stomach won.
In an instant, I had shoved my way in front of the line, in time to receive my trophy —the glittering, aromatic and perfectly sliced piece of heaven.
Either I had become instantly brave or had totally forgotten about the giant bully I had just shoved. Unfortunately, she hadn’t forgotten —and shove back she did. While it was just a slight push, Naomi did just enough to send my reward flying into the mountain of mashed potatoes. I tried to save it. Believe me, I tried.
My eyes started watering at the sight of my hard work spread there like a mop with green splatters all over. As my face intensified in redness, and my heartbeat picked pace, all I could hear were the earth-shattering laughter of other kids.
Just before the first trickle dropped from my now watery eyes, I head Miss Johnson call out my name. ‘Would you like some mashed potatoes with your pizza?’ she asked.
I wanted to walk out, but the hunger won, yet again. In a trance-like state, I said yes, as the entire room burst into laughter. My eyes met Naomi’s. She was laughing too. Caught in the moment, I found myself laughing.
Miss Johnson scooped up the mashed-potato-splattered pizza and laid it on my plate. I looked around my group of friends as we all started laughing again.
I never really believed the saying until I found myself laughing with the entire room. I didn’t just feel clumsy anymore. I felt relieved. Naomi and I were friends now. Or were we?
Additional Essay Writing Tips from Our Professional Team
As you write, remember that you are sharing emotional and sensory details with your audience. Make your writing vivid and colorful to help the reader share your feelings. Use good sequences and conflict. In addition:
- Use varied sentences;
- Employ dialogue effectively;
- Use transitions to enhance flow;
Remember that your main goal is to take your audience on a journey. Have them take an important message from the narration. Again, remember to edit your work.
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