Autism Education Project

How To Write A Narrative Essay

Throughout your college career, your professors will work hard to ensure that you are exposed to a variety of writings. Whether you are majoring in the arts or the sciences, you will have to write persuasive essays as well as expository and narrative essays. Even though all writing really is persuasive in nature, your writing abilities will be challenged by having to step outside of the persuasive writing box to experiment with other formats. Whether you know how to write a narrative essay or not, if you are assigned a narrative essay, you will quickly need to learn how to get the job done.

Application Essays in the Narrative Style

When you write a narrative essay, your goal is to prove a point by telling a story. In most cases, the story will be based on something that you actually learned. One of the most commonly assigned narrative essays is the admissions essay. When you are applying to college, many applications will require a narrative essay so that you can share an experience with the admissions committee. You might not realize this is the style of essay you are writing, unless the application actually states the style.

No Real Facts are Needed

What sets narrative essays apart from the other styles of essays is the fact that they need to prove a point, but they do not require actual facts to prove it. In a persuasive essay, you must include facts, especially facts that can be verified by real sources. In a narrative essay, you will prove your point, but you will use a real or fictional story to do so. No facts are needed at all. You do not even need to provide a source for the story you are writing. Many students have difficulty with narrative essays simply because of the fact that no facts are needed. Once you realize that you can prove a point through storytelling, writing a narrative essay does not seem so overwhelming.

Read Plenty of Samples

One of the best ways to learn how to write a narrative essay is to read narrative essays. When you do this, take time to notice the structure and function of every sentence and how they relate to the sentences around them. Look at the organization, whether it was written in chronological order or cause and effect order. Look at the placement of the thesis statement and how the topic sentences throughout the essay support it. Many of the best fiction writers and poets tend to write strong narrative essays that are relatively easy to find online. You can also turn to many of the collegiate writing sites to find more suggestions and samples to use as inspiration.

Organize the Narrative Essay

Each paragraph in the narrative essay has a purpose. Like every other essay, the beginning of your narrative should be the introduction. This part should have a powerful hook that grabs the readers’ attention as well as a bridge of sentences that flow smoothly into the thesis statement. This is the claim that your storytelling section, the body of the paper, will support. This section requires your creativity as you clearly tell your story to your readers. You can occasionally return to the thesis as you move through the body. Lastly, you move into the conclusion where you restate the point of your essay and the main ideas of the story you have told. Hopefully, by the time you are finished, you will have successfully proved your point, as well as educated and entertained your readers with the story at the same time.


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