The Personal Narrative

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For this assignment, you will be writing a personal narrative–a story–illustrating an event or experience exemplifying gratitude. In other words, share a colorful story about an experience or event for which–either during or after the event– you feel or felt thankful.  

An example might be writing about your experience as a senior in high school and the teacher who  helped you to achieve your goal of graduating and attending college.  Another example might be writing a story about your experience growing up in a rural community, acknowledging that it was this small, but mighty, community that made you who you are today, and for this, you are thankful.  Sharing a story about a loved one whose influence has been meaningful to you in some way, and thus, you feel so very thankful for their role in your life, or in that particular experience, would also be an example. FInally, drafting a story about any experience in your life for which you are thankful it occured would be a great topic to explore for this narrative assignment. 

Assignment-Specific Requirements:

Length: This assignment should be at least 550 words. 

Thesis: Underline your descriptive thesis statement or the point of your story.

Sources/Evidence Needed:  No outside/secondary sources are needed.

Page Formatting: See Appendix C – Formatting and Submitting Your Work

MLA Requirements: See Formatting your Essay: MLA 8th Edition

 

Rhetorical Mode

A personal narrative is a story about you. Narrative, from the Latin narrare, means to narrate a tale or a story. The narrative you will write will be a “personal” narrative.  Thus, the story will be written by you, about you, and in a lot of ways, for you. What makes a personal narrative so interesting is that it’s a story with a point or purpose.   In other words, a personal narrative is detailed, descriptive, dialogue-driven, and determined to make a point. 

Rhetorical ConsiderationsPurpose:

There needs to be a reason, not only for writing the narrative, but also for why the reader should read it. The purpose of the personal narrative is to share a meaningful experience and the lesson learned from the experience. Specifically, the purpose of this essay is to share a story about a time you experienced gratitude.

Audience:

In many ways, we write a personal narrative for ourselves to reflect upon an experience, to grow from an event. However, we want you to imagine that your audience is not only you but someone else. The writer needs to know who their audience is and how their needs will affect the way the narrative is composed and presented. For example, in addition to writing this story as an opportunity for personal reflection, you may also choose a family member or friend group as your real or imagined audience.  Selecting a real or imagined audience will help you develop your essay with the right tone. The tone for a personal narrative can be formal or informal; it really depends on your chosen audience

Form:

This piece of writing will be presented using a story format.  It will have a beginning, middle, and end.  The story will be written with a clear 

introduction paragraph

, a body of 

story-development paragraphs

, and a concluding paragraph. While a personal narrative is less “formal” than traditional academic writing, your story should have a 

thesis statement

. Thus allowing the 

reader

 to truly understand the point of your story.

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Title: The Personal Narrative

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