Narrative Essay

n this assignment you are going to write a narrative essay about a personal experience which had/has a wider significance. We have seen that in Langston Hughes’s “Salvation” how the writer uses his experiences to highlight a general truth, insight – something they learned that was bigger than the experience itself. This is what you should also do.

As you write the essay, bear in mind the principle features of narrative writing that we are discussing in class. Think about how you can introduce the experience and suggest the conflict without giving too much away. Try to construct the narrative using summary and scene effectively so that you can bring your narrative to some kind of climax. Remember to include a “payoff” section at the end, in which you resolve the conflict you have described, provide a retrospective, and say something about what the events meant to you.

· Orientation – Complication – Aftermath-Resolution

· Point of View

· Chronological Time – Psychological Time

· Scene – Summary

· “Exploding the Moment”

· Open-form and Closed-form Writing

Do not feel you have to choose a topic of earth-shattering importance. In fact, every-day or seemingly small incidents can provide excellent prompts for interesting narratives and thoughtful reflection. That is not to say you should avoid big events if you feel inspired to write about them and feel that they carry within them wider truths or implications; however, it is not the grandeur of the experience that will gain the most points, but the ability to construct an interesting narrative skillfully and to give the reader something to think about. Please, however, do not use illness or death as a main event in your essay.

The essay will be graded according to the following criteria:

· Essay structure

· Coherence

· Build-up of tension

· Descriptive power in the Complication section

· Effectiveness of the Introduction and Resolution

· Correct Use of English

Length: around 3-4 pages, double-spaced

Format: MLA

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