English 450 – Essay # 2 – Narration

English 450 – Essay # 2 – Narration
Writing a narrative essay allows us to do several things. We can entertain, persuade, or
inform our readers. We can share something important about ourselves or cause readers to
reflect upon important events from their own life. We can practice our writing skills. And
perhaps most important of all, we can understand ourselves a little bit better. With these
purposes in mind, please write a story about one of the following topics:
1) Assuming a false identity
2) Rebelling against a rule or law
3) Having a meaningful disagreement with a family member
4) Spending time in a small town, in isolation, or anywhere off the beaten path
5) Engaging in an act of solo determination
6) Experiencing a significant difference between expectation and reality
7) Being dependent upon the mercy of others
8) Delivering or receiving bad news
9) Performing an act during your childhood that showed signs of the person you are today
10) Going on a family vacation
11) Bonding with a sibling
12) Helping a stranger
13) Discovering a family secret
14) Realizing that your parents are imperfect
15) Achieving a goal
16) Visiting a place of mystery or tragedy
17) Undergoing a rite of passage or becoming an adult
18) Testing yourself or engaging in risky behavior
A successful essay will not only follow the fifteen point guideline provided for Essay #1,
but also present your main point clearly in a thesis statement at the start of your essay, follow a
logical time sequence, use vivid sensory details and specific narrative action, portray authentic
characters, and incorporate realistic dialogue.
Final drafts are worth twenty percent of your semester grade, so please be sure to make
an effort to show improvement since your last assignment. Essays should be at least two pages
long and should meet the format specifications listed on page two of the syllabus.
We’ve been working on invention for the past week, and this week, we will continue to
search for ambitious topics with a clear dramatic arc. Please select your topic by __________.
Please bring two complete copies of your rough draft to class for the peer critique on
__________. Your final draft is due (in your folder) on __________.
I am available during office hours (LA-9F: T/Th 8:30-9:30 am, 12:30-2:00 pm) and by
appointment (909-652-6924) if you have any questions or simply wish to talk about Into the
Wild, your essay, or the writing process. Of course, you can also set up a time to meet with a
Writing Center tutor by calling 652-6820. Have fun!