Rather than simply providing your audience with a summary of what happened, it guides them through your experience and allows them to draw their own conclusions. This requires that the author be deeply reflective and able to connect their own experience to the world at large.
A narrative essay also makes a point—otherwise, why narrate it at all? Like any good story, a narrative essay should include the essential story elements: Without these, your reader will be lost, or worse —bored.
The introduction will set the tone for the essay, provide relevant background information, and make the purpose of the story clear. The introduction to your essay gives you the opportunity to immediately impact your audience. This provides you with an opportunity to determine your narrative tone and voice, an important component to a great narrative essay.
The plot is where the action occurs. It keeps the story moving and explains what the story is about. Next, you should advance the plot by writing the conflict, composed of three elements; the rising action, the climax, and the falling action. This builds excitement and interest for your audience. It typically contains some kind of foreshadowing that may hint at the conclusion of the story. Following the climax, the tension decreases with the falling action before the story closes with a resolution of the conflict.
Characters make the story more relatable. Be sure to describe them in detail so the audience can really get a vision and feel for them. The characters of the story make your narrative essay more relatable. It is important to give them enough detail so that your reader can visualize each person and understand their motivations. This should include descriptions of both their physical appearance and the traits of their personalities.
Your characters help to move the story along with their dialogue and action. There should be a main character protagonist around whom the story is centered in order to establish who will solve the conflict of your plot. Creating strongly-written characters is an essential component for a successful narrative essay. The setting is where and when the story takes place.
Help the audience to see, hear, smell, taste, and feel their surroundings as they are immersed in your story. Your setting should include a number of specific elements in order to truly create a stage for your narrative. It should be an interactive aspect of your story and is important for setting your intended tone with your audience.
The climax is the main event of the story. It is where the action becomes most exciting. Your climax should come near the end of your story. After spending most of your time building up towards the main attraction of your narrative, the climax is like your reward to your readers for committing to your story thus far. The way to create an impactful climax is to build it around either suspense or surprise. The tension you have built up in your story should explode in a major way.
The conclusion closes the story and sums up its purpose. This is where the moral of the story comes in. The conclusion of your narrative essay should contain a number of important elements that allow you to neatly finish your story. A strong conclusion should:. This includes deep and critical thought into the plot points of your story and some sort of insight or settlement.
It is important that your conclusion does not ramble. After the climax of your story, what comes after is understandably less exciting. Therefore, your conclusion should be effective and purposeful while remaining concise. Take your components and follow the next few steps to put your reflective essay together. The writing phase of the essay consists of prewriting, drafting, revising, editing and publishing. The prewriting phase is especially important in narrative essay writing.
It is where you build the foundation for your story. You will start by choosing a topic and move into outlining the details.
Start by thinking about your life experiences in relationship to the theme of the assignment. Jot some of them down. If you feel an emotional connection to your topic, your narrative essay will be more effective. Once you have chosen your topic, brainstorm about the details of the event. Try to bring yourself back in time and relive the event as it is happening. Think about the characters, the time of year, the location, and the sequence of events. List out whatever you can remember.
Include sights, sounds, and smells in your descriptions--no detail is too small. Creating an outline of the story will make drafting much easier and will help you keep on topic. In the drafting phase you will do the bulk of the writing. Tell your story in the sequence it happened. Start by introducing your story and its purpose. Next, flesh out the action of story, focusing on its climax or main conflict.
Finally, finish by reminding the reader of your purpose and linking your personal experiences to the world at large. Be sure to write in the first person and develop yourself as the main character in your story. Good stories have relatable characters, so spend some time introducing yourself.
Your goal is make the reader feel like they are in the story, so describe things in specific detail. Utilize the five senses to help you do this. Remember, your readers have no prior knowledge of the story, so skipping what may seem like a minor detail could impede their understanding. The revision phase is often repeated multiple times.
Here, it is your goal to make your narrative essay the best it can be. Ask yourself if your purpose is clear. Without a clear thesis, your readers may be left wondering what the point of your essay was.
Did you introduce your purpose in the introduction? Did you repeat it in the conclusion, tying it into the bigger picture? Be sure to use clear and concise language throughout your essay. Much like in descriptive or creative essays, narrative essays are most effective when the language is carefully chosen.
Make use of that thesaurus and try to evoke specific emotions and senses in the reader. Did you tell your story sequentially? Is easy to understand the progression of events? Did you effectively transition the reader from one phase of the story to the next? Before you are ready to publish, you must check your essay for spelling, grammatical, and mechanical errors.
Publishing is essentially sharing your narrative essay. Due to their personal nature, sharing a narrative essay can be both exhilarating and terrifying. Remember, every writer is sensitive about their own work--even established writers. The important thing is to learn from the experience and utilize the feedback you receive to become a better writer.
By now you should understand the basics of narrative essays. They are creative tales with a clearly defined beginning, middle, and end.
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