First of all, you should know what it is and why people create this type of essay. Personal narrative essay is a special type of writing, usually written in the first person, which correlates with a theme of class and in which you are expected to share the experience from your own life.
It is the most general definition, but you should remember that, as in many other papers, some variations, especially in size, may take place. You need not only to tell readers an episode from your life; you have to make people feel something, awaken their feelings and emotions. Writing of personal narrative essays is a typical task for school students, but it doesn’t mean if you are at college, you will never happen to write it.
Step by Step Guide how to Create a Personal Narrative
In most cases the process of essay writing may be divided into three main parts – thinking over, writing and revision. This triad is the rule for creating any piece of writing, and now let’s focus on other details of personal narrative essay.
Step 1. Choose an appropriate story for your essay. Quite often students are given assignments such as “Write/tell about a time or an experience when you…” and that’s all. From one point of view, it’s cool that there aren’t many instructions concerning the plot of your essay, and you are free to choose what talk about. From another one, it’s a little bit complicated to pay attention to one episode from life and describe it in the best possible way. Nevertheless, feeling that you have enough life experience to share you need to note every idea that comes to your mind. In this way you won’t miss anything. When you have noted everything, go through your list of ideas and after that focus on the only one, by means of which you can show your point of view on a particular theme and illustrate it as well as possible. Make sure the story fits the assignment given by your teacher or lecturer.
Step 2. Limit your essay. Essay is a short form of writing, that’s why there is no sense in telling long and broad episodes from your life. On the contrary, you have to be able to pick the brightest points, we mean some specific event, emotions you felt at that moment and vivid details about it, otherwise your personal narrative would be hardly called an impressive one.
Step 3. Focus on various details. In order to make readers involved in your essay you need to put right accents and fill your essay with brilliant details. If you have some sound, smell or tactile association concerning the story you are going to tell about, this is exactly what you need. You can use them and in this way add some unusual touches to your piece of writing. As experience shows it’s much easier to do it using the following method. Take a sheet of paper, in the middle draw a circle and write the event you want to describe in it, after that surround the main circle with other ones where you should note what you felt, saw, heard and so on.
Step 4. Do a short scratch. Before direct writing of your essay, you need to make a list of the main plot points, and then you will be able to assess a general structure of the essay and divide it into paragraphs.
Step 5. Write an intriguing introduction. It’s a compulsory condition to make readers interested in what you have written. Use all your writing skills and prepare a trap for readers. You can add detailed description and give more information about what surrounds you. There is also another way – make a slight hint of what is told in the main part.
Step 8. Descriptions and details. If worthy descriptions are the first half of the battle, then powerful details are the second one. And a reason for that is pretty simple – descriptions and details make your personal narrative essay alive, they create necessary atmosphere. Characters, emotions, feelings and setting are points most students have to focus on. To avoid dry and boring descriptions use a well-known creative writing rule “Show and don’t tell” and vivid details.
Step 7. Sharpen your style and language. It’s extremely important to show your personality and your writing skills. Don’t be afraid of using pronoun “I” in your text, it is normal for personal narrative essay. Don’t forget about tropes, adjectives, adverbs, synonyms and antonyms.
Step 8. Revise the essay. The final step involves checking not only punctuation, grammar and vocabulary. You also have to go through your scenes and summaries, check format and don’t forget to sure your story corresponds to the topic.