Among the many types of academic papers, the narrative essay stands apart. It can be both the most exciting opportunity to excel and the most sophisticated task if you aren’t ready for it. On the other side, the job is manageable when you understand it and know how to do it. Thus, when you need to know how to write a narrative essay, this article will help you. 

Start From the Basics

The variety of essay types is impressive and can be frightening. No matter which skill your instructor wants you to develop, there will be a suitable essay as an exercise. To complete that job, you will have to train the necessary aspect precisely. Also, understanding the specificity of the paper type you face helps you to prepare for the task correctly.

What Is a Narrative Essay

A narrative essay is a kind of “intermediary” between creative writing and traditional college essay. In comparison, such types as argumentative or expository writing demand scientific research. A narrative paper wants you to share some piece of your experience or tell a story. It can be either real or fictional. 

A student who enjoys writing will advance – all people love exciting stories. If you succeed in composing one, lots of benefits befall for your academic records. On the other hand, not every student possesses the necessary skills. No wonder that so many of us search for something like “how do you start a narrative essay example” on Google. Learning from examples is among the most effective means. 

Still, even if you feel lost, facing this particular essay assignment, it might be easier to cope with it than you expect. It demands specific creative skills, but it is not necessary to research numerous academic sources. Your memories and experience are where you get the material for that assignment.

The Practical Approaches to Writing a Narrative

A narrative is, literally, a story. You need a plotline, characters, conflict, and climax. Try a simple mind exercise for writing a narrative: remember some event from your past and imagine how you would tell it to someone. Consider how to keep the counterpart engaged, and, the most essential, why you would share that story. It is the foundation of your narrative piece.

How do you write a narrative essay, and what should you take into consideration? 

The Right Topic Selection

Any essay writing begins with finding a topic. You might have a list of predefined issues already, or have the freedom of composing it yourself. The right topic is an essential “ace” you have for any assignment. Thus, note the following tips to select it for your work:

It should appeal to you personally. The approach is similar to any other story emerging in conversation. If you can have an engaging chat with your friends or other close people about it, you can have it as a narrative essay topic. 

You need to consider the audience’s emotional reactions. The nature of this essay is that it always implies emotions. Try to anticipate if your story might annoy or abuse your audience. If so – refuse it and choose another topic. 

The personal story determines a certain degree of openness. You are free to make this essay a complete fiction, but you will still feel emotions too. Select the topic which lets you remain in control. 

When you have a topic, research it. The primary sources are your memories, personal experience, and imagination. Ask yourself why you choose this particular story to share, and what you would like to obtain. Do you want to humor your audience, or make them think of some vital idea, feel sympathy, or intrigue them?

Knowing the precise goal, you will choose the right approach and develop the plotline accordingly. 

How Do You Write a Personal Narrative: Step by Step

Narrative essays are still essays, and they follow the standard requirements of the structures. A student has to present a thesis statement and elaborate on the three-part structures in a narrative. That’s why the most efficient method is to start with the outline. 

An outline is the detailed plan of your essay that lets you organize the contents. While outlining the narrative, you build a strong plotline, define the order of events and their interconnections, and consider the plotline. Also, it ensures that your story meets the required essay structures with the Introduction, the Body, and the Conclusion sections.

Building the Thesis Statement

How do you write a personal narrative according to the typical essay structure? It all starts with a thesis statement. Similar to other essays, it should be the main idea of your story. 

  1. Creatively introduce your topic.
  2. Sum up your emotions and explain them to the audience. 
  3. Play with the audience where applicable – intrigue it or hint what they will know later. 
  4. Don’t be banal and state some common knowledge fact. 
  5. Don’t ask questions. 

Outlining the Essay Structure

The three mandatory parts of the essay should be present in your outline. It guarantees that you have the correct structure, and all the elements will be in place, connected in the right way. 

  1. The Introduction. You start it with a “hook” sentence – a narrative essay gives many creative options. But note that the hook must relate to your article. Then, explain the paper’s theme and which “profit” it brings your audience to motivate them to learn more. Finally, present the thesis statement.
  2. The Body. It is the entire story with all events, thoughts, and images. Compose it in chronological order, and check the logical connections. The text must be fluent, so the audience could easily follow your narrative and catch all the details and meanings.
  3. The Conclusion. The narrative essay also gives more freedom for this part. For instance, you make an open ending to make the audience use imagination – it keeps your readers involved even after the end of the story. One rule is still obligatory: the conclusion must relate to the thesis statement directly.

How to Start a Personal Narrative Essay to Make Sure You Do It Right

When you have the story outlines and almost “hear” the essay in your mind, it is time to start the writing process. Before it, though, you should make some more preparations. 

Refer to the task requirements again and check if your work so far matches them. If you missed some detailed accidentally or misinterpreted some condition, it is easy to correct them in the outline. 

Check your outline. Track the plotline and ensure that you have all the necessary events in it, and their order is correct. If you referred to any other sources – mark the citations or references. You will need them in your bibliography. 

Write the first draft down. For this “creative” form of the essay, the introduction might be the part to start from. It often serves as an initial impulse that ignites your imagination and writing. 

This is how to start a personal narrative essay. 

After finishing the first draft:

  1. Check it thoroughly.
  2. Check the factual aspects like names, places, numbers, colors, and all other types.
  3. Recheck the story for the logic.

Next best decision is to put the text aside for some time and have some rest.

When your mind is fresh again – return to the paper and re-read it. Correct all the mistakes, fix the awkward fragments, and format the narrative piece according to the task requirements. 

Make Use of the Narrative Essay Examples to Learn From the Best

It is often beneficial to refer to the successful narrative essay examples. You must not copy them, as it would be plagiarism, but you can learn how other skilled writers copy with the job. Check the structures and transitions, and analyze how the authors keep their audiences involved. You might take their tips and approaches and apply them to your materials. You will find such examples on our website.

You can also use the service of writing a narrative essay – Custom Made Essay. We’ll consult you on the task in general, advice on some aspects, or compose the ready paper for your assignment, should you need it. Let us know!

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