Essay Prompt #1: Narrative

English 475

Anita Reyes

Essay #1: Narrative



"When I read about the clashes around the world--political clashes, economic clashes, cultural clashes--I am reminded that it is within our power to build a bridge to be crossed. Even if my neighbor does not understand my religion or understand my politics, he can understand my story. If he can understand my story, than he's never too far from me. It is always within my power to build a bridge. There is always a chance for reconciliation, a chance that one day he and I will sit around the table together and put an end to our history of clashes. And on this day, he will tell me his story and I will tell him mine." ~Paulo Coelho, 2014


Although many of us come from various backgrounds and cultures, there are universal experiences that we share as humans that allow us to connect and relate to one another. One of these experiences is that we all have the ability to grow and evolve. However, certain challenging and/or new situations can cause unwelcome anxiety and fear, which can prevent us from achieving our desired goal(s), and hinder our personal development. Nevertheless, the moment that we choose to confront our fears and overcome adversity, helps us recognize new qualities within ourselves, and causes us to shift our point of view. For this assignment, I would like you to think about a moment when you confronted your fears, and how this event changed the way that you look at the world. You are then required to write a story about your remembered experience, while including as many details as possible. This event does not necessarily have to be an epic moment, but it does need to be a moment where you defied your fears, and as a result, significantly altered your perspective.

Although this is a narrative, this is an essay and a clear thesis is still required in your introduction. Also note that an effective narrative will clearly set the scene for the reader by evoking any or all of the five senses. Furthermore, keep in mind that you will only need to reflect on one memory in your story, and how this memory shaped or changed your perspective. Be aware that you will be sharing your essay draft during peer review with your classmates, so please make sure you are comfortable enough with your topic to share in class.


Essay Requirements:


  •   Hard copy and email version
  •   At least five paragraphs
  •   Use descriptive language
  •   Use first person “I”
  •   MLA format: double-spaced, size 12 font, Times New Roman
  •   Must be 3-4 pages in length

Outline due:  8/23/2017   Rough Draft: 8/30/2017   Final Draft due: 9/13/2017