How to Start a Narrative Essay

How to Start a Narrative Essay

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‘’Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.’’ William James


A narrative essay is a story that has a specific point. It has the aim to present a lesson or teach us.  This kind of essay is frequently written in the first-person voice, but maybe in third as well. A  a narrative essay has a strong chronological order and verbs to describe vividly 5 senses such as touch, smell, taste, feel and hear.  A narrative essay has a plot, characters, a problem, a climax and often uses a dialogue.

The narrative essay aims to express or share certain information, to entertain, to reveal our most personal feelings and opinions and to present the same to others.  Adjust the language to the type of the audience (classmates, a teacher, community member, etc.). Decide what is the purpose of an essay (providing information or just to tell a story).

There are 5 stages of the writing process: prewriting, drafting, revising, editing and publishing. In the prewriting process, choose a topic of interest and complete the prewriting process.

The thesis statement depends upon the story to be described. The thesis can be something general in the case of a narrative essay.

The brainstorming

Write a thesis statement as for any other type of essay. The thesis depends upon the story to be explained with a certain level of evidence. In the beginning,  brainstorm for a personal story or observation that illustrates or proves the thesis statement. Write an introductory paragraph from the most valuable resources in the literature on the web or books.

At the beginning of the writing process, choose a topic that inspires you or personally relates to you. Brainstorm the essay drafts. From the beginning, organize the introduction paragraph, the body paragraph, and the conclusion.

The introductory paragraph has the aim to provide the answer to the following: What is the basic idea of the story? Where is the story taking place? When is the story taking place? Who is in the story?

The hook is the first sentence of the introductory paragraph and its purpose is to highlight the thesis and grab the reader’s attention. 

The body paragraph is similar to the body of a narrative paragraph. It develops the story in the form of climax, rising action and falling action (pre and post certain events).

The concluding paragraph must summarize the main idea and reflect the thesis.

How to improve the essay

A narrative essay should simply introduce the story. It has a plot, characters, situation and a conclusion. Hence, start a narrative essay with a thesis statement then brainstorm an idea and outline the most impactful online resources. 

In addition, you may insert sayings or quotes to present an idea. Write about the lessons from your personal experience.

To improve the writing process, answer the following: Are the details clear? Or maybe I should add or take out parts? etc.