Published on February 17, 2008
English 101: English 101 Lecture Three: The Narrative Essay Paper #1: Narrative: Paper #1: Narrative Write an essay about a significant event in your life. Choose an event that will be engaging for readers and that will, at the same time, tell them something significant about you. Develop a controlling theme. Point of view: Since this story is about you, you should use “I”. Do not use “you” when referring to yourself (either in this paper or in future papers). Chronological sequence: Since this event happened in the past, use past tense and “mark” time in the story, including transitions and other such devices to move the story along. Paper #1: Narrative: Paper #1: Narrative Conflict and tension: Conflict in most narratives takes the form of a struggle between the main character and an opposing force. The significance of your chosen event may revolve around how you solved a conflict and how that solution changed you for the better (or worse). Dialogue: Use both quoted and reported dialogue to recreate conversations in your narrative, when needed. Description: Use detailed descriptions of people and events when appropriate. Narration and Description: Narration and Description narration and description are often taught separately, but you can’t have one without the other: you’re always going to describe something while you’re telling a story. description can be objective and subjective. Objective descriptions involve no emotions whatsoever. Subjective descriptions, however, include some form of personal feeling about the object, person, or idea being described. Questions to consider: Questions to consider What point will you be trying to make with your story? And will you make it with one extended example or several brief ones? What will your audience need to be told if you want them to know what you know? In what order did things happen? What figures of speech (images, simile, metaphor) can and should you use? Your Narrative Essay (DB #s 7 and 8): Your Narrative Essay (DB #s 7 and 8) Read the sample essays in the Texts folder of Course Documents to get some ideas. What significant event in your life do you want to write about? Why is this event significant to you, and what will your audience need to be told? As a reader, what questions would you ask about this significant event? What would you want to hear about?