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What is a Narrative Essay Exactly?
The first question you are probably asking is, “What is a narrative essay?” So let us start with a narrative essay definition. In a nutshell, this assignment asks you to tell a story. It is common to write a narrative essay about the experience, especially if you feel like you have a story to share about a lesson in life. A good example of this would be writing a narrative essay about overcoming a challenge. On the other hand, it can be fiction as well. As you write a short narrative essay, you should use colorful, descriptive language so that the reader feels engaged. The elements of a narrative essay remain the same as any type of storytelling: you need a purposeful plot, characters, a setting, conflict, and resolution.
However, your paper should limit its focus on one central theme since it is only meant to be around five paragraphs long. Since you are limited in the number of words you can write, you should get straight to the point in the first paragraph. Note that this assignment is often written as a first-person narrative essay, especially if it is meant to be an autobiographical narrative essay, although you can also tell a story about historical figures. For instance, you might be asked to write a narrative of the life of Frederick Douglass essay or other figures who made a major contribution to civil rights. Ultimately, the type of narrative essay that you write depends on your professor’s instructions. But whether you are writing a personal narrative essay or something from your imagination, it needs to be compelling.
Main Features of the Narrative Essay Format
Now let us discuss the narrative essay format. A good narrative descriptive essay should be meaningful and leave the reader feeling as though they have learned something new. The length of a high school narrative essay will likely not exceed five paragraphs while a college narrative essay might be longer and require more complexity. Either way, you should discuss this with your teacher/instructor so that you understand their expectations.
Here are the general formatting guidelines:
- typed in Times New Roman, 12-point font;
- double spaced
- one-inch margins
- one half inch indentation at the beginning of a paragraph
- no extra spacing between paragraphs
- include a cover page (if in APA format. MLA typically does not require one).
- the page number on the upper right
While you might not think formatting matters, your professor would certainly beg to differ. Your essay should contain 1-inch margins on all sides, and if you are required to use APA guidelines, there should be a header that contains the title of the narrative along with the page number. APA also dictates that you include a title page. The title of your story should be centered on the top of the page, the next line should include your name, and the bottom line should list the name of your academic institution. The content of your paper should always be double-spaced regardless of formatting style. While most types of essays require a reference page, this typically is not the case with a narrative essay unless it contains historical facts that you researched from literary sources.
Looking at a Narrative Essay Outline
Before you start writing your paper, it is important to draft a narrative essay outline. This will ensure that your narrative remains focused.
Narrative Essay Introduction
As with virtually all essays, you need to start with an introduction that lets the reader know what you are going to share. You need to set the scene, using vivid language so that it places the reader in that situation. It should contain a hook that attracts their attention. Something highly personal and emotionally moving can be effective, as is a shocking or surprising statement that catches the reader off guard.
Narrative Essay Thesis
Unlike a research paper, you are not making an argument or proposing a theory. However, your narrative still needs to focus on a centralized idea, and therefore it needs to contain a thesis statement. It can be something along the lines of, “Although I would not wish this on anybody else, it ultimately made me a stronger person” and then proceed to explain how this was the case through sharing the experience. You are establishing the conflict that you will proceed to describe in the main body and resolve in the conclusion.
Narrative Essay Main Body
This is where you go into full detail about the narrative, including the actions that you took to overcome your circumstances. Remember that you will only focus on one plot since this type of essay is too brief to allow for subplots and elaborate twists and turns.
Narrative Essay Characters
The interactions between the various characters are essential for driving the plot, but keep in mind that you will not have a whole lot of space to allow for much character development. Make the role of the characters clear and get to the point.
Narrative Essay Conclusion
You will finish the story by discussing how the conflict was resolved and you will provide some reflection. Tying your conclusion back to the thesis is the best way to end the story.
How to Write a Narrative Essay Step By Step
Let us look at how to write a narrative essay step by step.
Develop the Narrative Elements
Whether it is fiction or a real-life story, you will need to work on the plot, characters, setting (it could be something broad like Chicago or general like a gas station in some town that is never specified), conflict (the issue that created the tension), and resolution (how the problem was solved).
Build the Story Around Your Thesis
As previously mentioned, a thesis will serve as the foundation for the entire story. It gives the story purpose and informs the reader about the takeaway from the narrative, such as the lessons learned as a result of the experience. Avoid including details that are irrelevant to the story.
Use Clear Writing and Structure
Your narrative essay structure is extremely important, as is your choice of words. You do not want to leave the reader feeling confused or unclear about the direction of the narrative. As you write, the story might make sense in your mind, but that does not necessarily mean the audience will understand it. This is why it is important to ask a friend or family member to read your drafts. They will be able to point out any flaws or ambiguities.
Revise Your Essay
When you finish writing your literacy narrative essay, you might feel tempted to turn it in as it is; however, this would be a mistake. It is important to check it for grammar mistakes, typos, and proper flow. Do not proofread immediately after you have completed the draft; you should sit on it for a few hours and then look it over with fresh eyes.
What Is a Thesis Statement for a Narrative Essay?
The thesis statement for a narrative essay is important because it provides direction for the entire paper. While, unlike a scientific research paper, you are not making an argument that you plan to support using scholarly sources, the key plot points of the story still need to revolve around your thesis statement. Right off the bat, you want the reader to understand the purpose of your story and what they can learn from it. It should be catchy and give the audience a reason to read the entire essay.
For instance, you would not want to write something like, “Visiting Paris for the first time brought out all sorts of emotions.” A better thesis would be, “After smelling the freshly roasted coffee emitting from the cafes that lined the streets of Paris, I immediately realized I was in for a warm, cozy experience.” In the second example, you are using colorful, vivid descriptions that the audience can relate to, and giving them a taste for what to expect as they detail their trip to Paris.
How to Start a Narrative Essay?
Still not sure how to start a narrative essay? Here are some pointers. First of all, it is essential that you get it started on the right foot. After all, if you lose your reader right away, they are not going to have any interest in reading your story. Therefore, you do not want it to be boring nor should you strive to create an incoherent word salad. Your introduction can be humorous or serious and thought-provoking, but no matter what direction you take, it needs to be something the audience can relate to. Here are some good ways to capture the reader’s attention:
- Start with a quote that is relevant to your narrative.
- Share an interesting fact, especially one that served as motivation for the choices you make in the story.
- Begin with a statement that is shocking or surprising
- Provide some details about the setting as a way to establish the mood
- Inform the reader with a few statistics that are related to your story
How to End a Narrative Essay: Useful Hints
Knowing how to end a narrative essay can go a long way in terms of influencing the reader. You obviously will not conclude this paper the same way you would with an argumentative essay. In other words, summarizing the story and restating the thesis would not make sense for a narrative essay. However, it is still important to conclude by providing some reflection on the lessons learned. For example, if your narrative was based on an experience that took place a decade ago, you might now fast forward to the present and explain how the older, wiser version of you has changed as a result of what you went through.
Depending on your objectives, the conclusion of your narrative could serve as a way to tie up loose ends. On the other hand, if the point is to remind the reader that nothing is ever certain in life or that real life does not always turn out the way it does in fairytales, you can finish with a bittersweet statement acknowledging this. Sometimes a narrative’s conclusion is not a true conclusion at all, but a chance for the reader to imagine for themselves what happens next.
After all, not every narrative has to provide the reader with all of the answers. Even if you choose to end the story this way, you do not want to be too abrupt. For example, you might end the narrative with the character being left with a couple of choices, but not reveal which one they ultimately decide on. On the other hand, it would not make sense to have a character enter a restaurant in the final sentence and have that be the ending without establishing any motives or providing context.
Finally, a big mistake that inexperienced writers make when doing a narrative essay is that they want to spoon-feed the reader and tell them how they should feel. But this is not the right approach. Instead of telling the reader that they should be happy for the character, you should simply allow the character’s actions and words speak for themselves.
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The process of placing an order is quick and convenient. Just visit our order page and provide us with as much detail about your narrative essay assignment as possible. You are welcome to give us a topic or even ask your writer to come up with an interesting idea themselves. You even get a chance to choose the writer yourself! Feel free to look at their personal pages on our website and check out their ratings, stats and how much they charge for their services. Pick the writer who is best for you and they will take it from there! We even give you a chance to message your writer so that you know how your narrative essay is progressing. They hold degrees in almost every academic field, which means you will be able to collaborate with somebody who has relevant experience and background knowledge!
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- Your course load, job, and other obligations make it impossible for you to finish your writing assignments on time. Your professors are not going to have even an ounce of sympathy for your predicament. Yet another reason to hire a custom paper writer!
- The assignment is too complicated for you to deal with. Sure, you could spend the rest of the night trying to struggle with your essays, but is it really worth it for a mediocre grade? With our support, you can get the grades you need without any of the frustrations!
Our services are affordable and convenient! Our customer support team works around the clock to assist you, and our superb editors make sure your custom paper is original and free of plagiarism. We can work on any order regardless of subject, topic, and degree of complexity or level of urgency. So make the right choice and invest in a high-quality narrative essay paper from EliteWritings.com today!
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We assure you that we will not disappoint you if you purchase narrative essays at EliteWritings.com. Our writers know how hard academic writing can be and they strive to make students’ lives easier. Therefore, the quality of writing is never compromised and well-written essays are what we are famous for. Moreover, our writers are talented and creative, which means that your paper will always include unique and extraordinary ideas to get excellent grades only.
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