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Transcript of Personal Narrative
Personal NarrativeWriting a first person essay and using connectors
IntroductionInterview a partner for 5 minutes.Ask your partner questions (Where are you from? What are your hobbies? What classes do you like?)Write a 5 sentence introduction of your partner.
First Writing AssignmentYour Task:Write a personal narrative in five paragraphs. Each paragraph should have at least five sentences.
Think about:When was an important time in my life?What has happened in my life that I would enjoy writing about?Is there an event in my life that other people would enjoy hearing/reading about?
What is a personal narrative?A personal narrative is a story about yourself and an event that happened in your pastNarrative = StoryThe personal narrative is the most creative essay and allows you more freedom than other essays.
What is a personal narrative?Often written in 1st person I or we because it is based on a personal storyCan also be written in 3rd personCan never be written in 2nd personHas specific sensory details to get the reader hooked on the storyIs developed in chronological orderHas verbs that help paint a picture and draw in the reader
Components of a StorySetting = Where the action in a story happens.Theme = Basic idea or point of the storyMood = Feeling or atmosphere the author creates for the story.Characters = The people in the storyPlot = What happens in the storyOften uses dialogue
Introduction - NarrativeDescribe the background of the story (characters, setting, atmosphere)Prepare the reader on what to expect in the story.You should have a hook that will grab the readers attention, as well as a thesis that organizes the essay.
What is a hook? The first two or three lines in the introductory paragraph that grabs readers attention. Help set the stage for the story
Make readers guess what will happen next in the story
How to write a good hook Like a fish getting hooked by a fisherman, you need to hook your readers and make them want to read your essay. If its a good hook, people would want to read your essay. If it is not a good hook, then no one wants to read your essay.
Some suggestionsFor some suggestions on how to write a good hook, see the narrative essay section at:
Lets look at some hooks
Hooks - Connecting InformationAfter the hook, the writer usually writes three to five sentences that connect it to the topic.
Example from Keith Folse: Her daily routine was not glamorous. She did everything from sweeping the floors to cooking the meals. If someone had asked her, Are there any household chores that you practically hate?, she probably would have answered, None.
ExampleWrite a sample hook for this paragraph:
At 16 I worked in the toy department of Lotte Department Store, where I learned that I enjoyed helping people. I always went out of my way to help people because I learned that if I worked hard, I would succeed. This is the reason why I want to be a businessman and go to business school.
ExampleI had never been more anxious in my life. I had just spent the last three hours trying to get to the airport so that I could travel home.
What questions do you have? What do you think will happen next?
ThesisStates the main idea of the essay (thesis statements).In narrative essays, they introduce the action that begins in the first paragraph of the essay.
ThesisThe thesis will depend upon the story to be proven. The thesis can be something general in the case of a narrative essay. For example, you may write, Learning something new can be a scary experience.
ThesisAs the reader, you will expect to learn what the new thing is.As the reader, you will expect to why new things can be scary. As the reader, you will expect there to be a twist in the action.
Introduction & Thesis
Introduction & ThesisIntroduction The introductory paragraph should identify the topic and explain why it is important and worthy of discussion. The sample essay begins with a general statement: Learning something new can be a scary experience. This statement introduces the subject of the essay, which is a particular learning experience the author had.
Body Contains most of the plot - the supporting information.Can be organized in many different ways. One way is chronological, or time, order (where you give more information about the story as it proceeds in time).
Body Paragraph 1
Body Paragraph 1Body Paragraph 1 The first body paragraph should support and expand upon the thesis, main idea, and/or argument presented in the introductory paragraph.
Body Paragraph 2
Body Paragraph 2Body Paragraph 2 The second body paragraph should further develop the idea presented in the first two paragraphs, and may introduce a second viewpoint and/or supplementary evidence to support the argument.
Body Paragraph 3
Body Paragraph 3Body Paragraph C The third body paragraph should relate to the thesis statement in the introductory paragraph, and present the final idea or evidence.
Gives your reader an ability to follow happens and predicts what will happen next.
Common Time TransitionsBeforeAfterDuringFirstNextSecondThenFinallyWhileLaterAt lastLastEventuallyMeanwhileSinceNowSoon When
Connectors and Time Relationship WordsShow how events progress.
Chronological Order- first (second, third, etc.), next, finally, later, now, then
Prepositions- after (a moment), at (1pm), by (Thursday), during (class), until (6:00)
Time Words that begin clauses- after, as soon as, before, (two weeks) later, from then on, when, while, whenever, until
Concluding ParagraphCan have two functions:The moral of the story, or what the character(s) learned from the experience.Make a prediction about what will happen next based on what happened.
Concluding ParagraphThe concluding paragraph may be the most important. The writer must not merely repeat the introductory paragraph, but explain in expertlike detail what has been learned, explained, decided, proven, etc. The writer must reveal the ways in which the papers thesis might have significance in society.
Concluding ParagraphIn the final paragraph of the sample essay, the author reflects on the larger meaning of the experience described. The author concludes that learning to swim helped her feel more confident about herself in other new situations, and the idea that selfconfidence comes from conquering fears is something all people can relate to. This is the point of the essay.
Example Narrative EssayHave you ever had trouble trying to get to someplace very important? Where were you going? Why were you having problems?
What is a hero? What do you consider to be a heroic act?
Paragraph UnityEach paragraph of an essay must have unity.A paragraph must have one main idea.Every sentence in the paragraph must be relevant to that main idea.
Paragraph Unity - ExampleAs you manage your time, think about how long certain activities will take. A common mistake is to underestimate the time needed to do something simple. For example, when you are planning to go to the store, there may be a line of people. Last week in line I met a woman I went to high school with, so we chatted. It turns out she has two children just the same age as mine.
Good Writing TipShow, Dont Tell Good story telling includes details and descriptions that help the reader understand what the writer experienced. Think about using all five sensesnot just the sense of sightto add details about what you heard, saw, and felt during the event.
Good Writing TipFor example, My heart jumped as the dark shape of the brown grizzly lurched toward me out of the woods provides more information about what the writer saw and felt than, I saw a bear when I was hiking.