For this essay, you will need to write about one specific experience that changed how you acted, thought, or felt. Use your experience as a springboard for reflection. This narrative essay needs to be about an event that actually happened to you.

Your first goal is to tell an interesting story about this event. Your goal is to tell a good story, so don’t think of this as simply an academic essay. Think of interesting stories you have read during your life. Good stories are entertaining, informative, lively, and believable; they will mean something to those who write them as well as to those who read them.

However, the purpose is not to merely tell an interesting story but to show your readers the importance and influence the experience has had on you.

Any time you render a full account of a personal experience, you answer what is commonly known as “reporter’s questions”–the who, what, where, when, why, and how questions reporters ask themselves to make sure their reports of news stories are complete. Whether your essay is engaging or not depends upon the subject, your interest in telling it, and the skills you use to weave together these story elements.

Your story should be descriptive, using sensory language (touch, smell, sight, sound, and taste)Links to an external site. to describe. Narratives include action and details, provide a clear sequence of events, and use dialogue. Describe yourself and other participants in your story in such a way that the details and facts help tell your story. Experiences happen in some place at some time, and good essays describe these settings.

In the personal essay, your main character is yourself, so don’t be afraid to use a first-person perspective and use the word “I.”

The event you choose is up to you, but make sure it’s clear to a reader why the event is important and how it changed you in some way.

I suggest you follow this basic outline:

Introduction: Introduce the topic, assuming the readers do not know the writing prompt. Make sure your introduction grabs the readers’ attention. Use at least one introduction strategy. Invest your readers in the topic. Make them care about it. End the introduction with your thesis statement, which should include a forecasting statement (sub-divisions).

Body Paragraphs: Follow the MEAL PLANLinks to an external site. for each body paragraph. Use evidence, examples, direct quotations, events, and people to support your paragraphs.

Conclusion: End your piece in a strong and interesting way. Sum up your main argument, but also include a strong conclusion strategy. You might want to predict what the future holds or explain the lasting impact of this event.

Length: Your essay must be at least 1,500 words. Let me be clear — this part of the assignment is non-negotiable: papers short of the length requirement will be returned ungraded.

Read the requirement above again, please. If you do not write at least 1,500 words, I will not grade your essay, and you will be required to revise it.



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