Essay Manuals

What is the Key to Writing a Perfect Narrative Essay

What is It?

Well, to write an effective essay, in narrative form, it is important to know what a narrative is first.

In a narrative you are to narrate, and to narrate is to tell a story. Your goal with this story should be to teach the reader a lesson or help them gain insight. So to write an effective narrative essay, you must have a clear story in mind as you’re writing. To do this, make sure you:

Conventions of Storytelling

The last point is key. If you’d like to write a successful narrative, you must be sure to include 5 very important things for any story:

Detail, Detail, Detail!

Another very important part of a narrative is the detail. Use all five of your senses to be descriptive, especially when it comes to characters and settings. If you do this, you will successfully make the reader feel like they are in the story and they will have an easier time connecting to it and envisioning who you are writing about and where the story is happening. Use concrete details and avoid abstract details.

Concrete vs. Abstract

Concrete language is very clear, descriptive, and gives the reader information. Abstract language makes it harder for the reader to visualize the story and leaves them feeling disconnected or confused. If you are concrete in your language, the reader will be able to visualize everything in their heads.

When Should a Narrative NOT be Written as a Story?

Unlike with other types of essays, narrative essays give the writer the chance to be more creative. It can also be a very personal way of writing. Unlike other types of essays, in a narrative the writer has the freedom to write in the first person. But, of course, a narrative can be written in third person, as well. An example of when there is less creativity accepted and less freedom to write in the first person in a narrative essay is when writing a book report.

Writing a Book Report

When writing a book report, the reader is still using the conventions of storytelling and is still telling a story, in a sense, because they are relaying the details of whatever book they are talking about. When doing this, the narrative is usually not as personal to the writer and they may feel more limited with what they can write about. At least when writing a book report, the writer already has all the details about the story laid out for them, and all they need is the book and enough of an understanding to explain the story or to convey a message about the story to anyone reading their report.

The Most Important Part of Narrative Writing

Make sure to write in your own voice! You’re the one telling a story, so tell it the way you would, not someone else. An easy way to do that is to think about how you would tell a story to someone you were talking to, and then write that way. It’s as simple as that!

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