Narrative Essays: Examples and How to Write them

As the name suggests, a narrative essay tells a tale. Typically, this is a story of a personal encounter you experienced. Contrary to most academic writing, this form of essay and the descriptive essay allows you to express yourself creatively and personally.

As the name suggests, a narrative essay tells a tale. Typically, this is a story of a personal encounter you experienced. Contrary to most academic writing, this form of essay and the descriptive essay allows you to express yourself creatively and personally.

The narrative essay is one of the four main styles of essays. The other types of essays include expository, descriptive, and persuasive.

A narrative essay tests your writing ability in an engaging and imaginative way that adheres to a predetermined narrative structure. They are frequently given in high school or in university composition programs.

You can exercise your creativity and tell a gripping story in a narrative essay. For students who are used to writing argumentative or expository essays, this style of essay is frequently a refreshing change of pace.

Explore the fundamentals of the narrative essay, potential prompts, and how to structure, outline, and write your own narrative essay.

What Is a Narrative Essay?

A narrative essay is one type of academic writing that seeks to tell a story. Your objective as an author is to give your readers the appropriate setting and a realistic experience.

Typically, this kind of essay is written in the first person perspective. You must keep readers interested by placing them at the center of the story. Narrative essays makes extensive use of vivid details, descriptive strategies, etc. to do this and create the proper mood.

The fact that a narrative essay must always be concise presents the biggest writing obstacle. Therefore, your objective is to take a complicated topic and simplify it such that its main ideas may fit into a brief essay while yet including enough detail to keep readers interested. In doing this, it’s best to adapt a type of narrative essay.

Types of Narrative Essays

If you don’t have a clear idea of what you want to say or how to convey it, writing a narrative essay may seem challenging. There are many different kinds of narrative essays and narrative writing.

Fictional Essays

Fiction is an assumed story that is based on the thoughts, ideas, and feelings of the author and is portrayed as a series of numerous events. It may be presented as a play, novel, short story, or folktale, among other formats.

Non-fictional Essays

On the other side, non-fiction that is based on actual information, facts, or events qualifies as a personal story essay. The most popular non-fiction writings include biographies and journals and diaries.


Because poetry is a narrative, where the expression of thoughts and ideas is given emphasis by the specific style and rhythm, it can be both fictitious and non-fictional. Most often, sonnets and epics are used.

Other Types Of Narrative Writing

There are four types of narrative essay writing that are frequently used: quest, linear, and non-linear as well as viewpoint.

Linear narrative

A linear narrative portrays the events of the story in the same chronological order as they occurred, and it may be done from any point of view (first-person narration, second, third). The most well-known work by Jane Austen, Pride, and Prejudice, is an illustration of a linear narrative.

Non-linear narrative

A non-linear narrative, on the other hand, portrays the events of the story out of chronological order, frequently using flashbacks and other literary devices to do so. The events are presented in several orders in Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey.

Quest Narrative

In a quest tale, the protagonist toils assiduously toward a goal that becomes the story’s all-consuming passion and forces the character to overcome numerous challenges along the way. Sherlock Holmes and Moby Dick are two excellent examples of quest narratives.


A viewpoint narrative aims to convey the perspectives or fictitious experiences of the story’s main character or other fictional characters. In this one, the narrator’s own life and subjective point of view are used to filter writing, moods, sensations, and other sensory aspects.

Elements of Narrative Essays

In-depth stories are typically told in narrative essays from the perspective of one individual. The storyline, which is described in sufficient depth to develop to a climax, is the main emphasis of a narrative essay. This is how:

  • Typically contains narrative elements yet follows a fundamental writing pattern.
  • Always written in the first person (from the author’s perspective);
  • It always serves a reason. This is frequently indicated in your thesis statement in the opening paragraph.
  • Presented in chronological sequence;
  • There might be a discussion. Here are the specifics on how to punctuate dialogue correctly for further information.
  • Aims to educate readers rather than debate or preach.
  • The author engages the reader with vivid descriptions and sensory details. All of these specifics are somehow related to the writer’s main argument.

How to write a Narrative Essay

Components (Paragraphs) of a good essay

In order to tell a complete story, a narrative essay must include all the story’s components, including a beginning, middle, and conclusion as well as storyline, characters, setting, and climax.

In order to write a compelling narrative essay, you must bring together all the components, like following the standard outline as well as essay writing format and structure.

Narrative Essay Outline

We advise that you adhere to the precise order of events listed below while writing this kind of academic assignment.

  • Brainstorm concepts
  • Choose the correct subject.
  • Determine why you are writing.
  • Plan your story such that you may come to reasonable conclusions from it. It should have rising action, a climax, and falling action.
  • Form an outline

As mentioned above, if you approach your writing in the manner outlined above, it will go a lot more quickly and with less stress. Returning to the narrative essay outline, let’s now.

Narrative Essay Format and Structure (Putting it together)

The structure and format of a narrative essay are typical. Like other assignments, this one often follows a five-paragraph essay format: an introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion in the last narrative paragraph. However, in contrast to other essay genres, a narrative paper’s paragraphs have clearly stated objectives:

  1. Introduction: provides context for the narrative, explains the writer’s motivation, and has a hook to draw the reader in. Your essay’s first sentence must achieve the following three objectives: Use a hook to draw readers into the story. Use a compelling question, fact, quotation, or statement to pique readers’ interest as the beginning of a strong hook. Give readers a sense of the action and the setting. Just a glimpse into the story should be given; don’t give away the complete plot in order to keep your readers interested.Establish the aim of your essay. Finally, your narrative introduction should give some context for the main theme of the tale. Don’t reveal the lessons you’ve learned just yet; instead, give them a sneak preview of what’s to come. A thesis statement is typically found in the introduction.
  2. Thesis Statement: The paper’s thesis statement is yet another crucial component. It should be expressed in the introduction and then reaffirmed in the conclusion to strengthen the essay’s overall impact. Your key argument should be in a thesis statement. Its major objective is to present the issue or conflict that will be the subject of your paper and to pique readers’ curiosity.A strong thesis statement should not be a statement of fact or universal truth, nor should it be a recommendation, question, or proposal. Instead, it needs to provide a sneak preview of the issue, a succinct explanation, and some ideas as to how to proceed.
  3. The Main Essay Body: The most crucial section of your essay is the body. In this section, you should narrate the tale, provide information, and direct readers through the action. Depending on the overall word count of your document, the body of a narrative essay may have three or more paragraphs. The following four crucial considerations should be included in your narrative essay’s body paragraphs:1. In a narrative essay, it’s important to establish a scene and a mood that the reader can follow. Even the greatest essay writers can take hours to complete a paper and are meticulous about including all relevant information. However, avoid overusing literary allusions in your statements.2. Include dialogue: Engaging the reader in a conversation is a good technique to capture their interest again. A story can be brought to life and its mood is supported through dialogue. Use this method wisely once more.3. Write chronologically: Unless the author is forthright, it’s difficult for readers to understand the sequence of events in a document. The best method to keep your paper organized is to keep things in chronological order.4. Avoid straying from the plot: The first-person voice is most effective when discussing a personal experience. Writing in the third person will make more sense if this is a tale you were told by a friend.

    The main body is sub-divided into 3 sections for clearer writing:

  4. Main body 1st paragraph: used to depict rising action
  5. Main body 2nd paragraph: used to depict story climax
  6. Main body 3rd paragraph used to depict falling action
  7. Conclusion: Lessons from the story.
    You are asked to make a few closing remarks on your tale in the paper’s conclusion. Reiterate some of the most important facts and concepts from the body of the essay here. The lessons you’ve taken away from a certain circumstance should also be highlighted, and you should leave readers with some food for thought.

Steps Of Writing A Narrative Essay

Types of Essays

Step 1 – Organizing the Topic’s Points: To make the essay look professional, the writer merely needs to arrange the points in the proper order. One of the most crucial tasks that must be completed before writing the essay is this.

Step 2 – Researching the Subject: This step is for authors who are writing about other tales rather than their own. The author should research the subject of his essay.

Step 3 – Writing the Essay: The writer must now begin writing the essay after organizing the necessary points. The writer’s talent is the only factor in this step. He needs to decide on the right plot structure before starting to write the essay.

Step 4 – Forming The Introduction: After starting the essay’s writing, the author must provide a thorough introduction that explains the topic’s background and the rationale for its selection. Here, the primary goal is to discuss the essay’s subject.

Step 5 – Writing The Body: The body, is where the writer explores the essay’s real subject. The writer needs to have the right information to compose this section—which is the most crucial one—in detail. The entire essential information about the subject the writer is writing the essay about is contained in the essay’s body.

Step 6 – Framing The Conclusion: This is to bring the essay to a close. The major task of the conclusion is to condense the entire essay’s thesis into a single, succinct paragraph. The essay’s conclusion shouldn’t be abruptly ended; instead, the writer should do so in a way that the readers appreciate the essay.

Narrative Essay Examples

FAQ About Narrative Essay

What are the 3 types of narratives?

We’ll practice using first-person, second-person, and third-person narratives in a moment. Each has a certain function. But first, it’s vital to understand the difference between a story and narration before we enjoy some narration examples.

What are narrative types?

Nonfictional writing that is based on actual occurrences is sometimes narrative. Characters, plot, conflict, place, and point of view are all characteristics of narrative writing. Novels, short tales, comics, dramas, musicals, and narrative poetry are all examples of narrative writing.

What are the 5 types of narrative text?

Narratives can take many different forms. They may be made up, real, or a blend of the two. Fairy tales, mysteries, science fiction, romances, horror stories, adventures, fables, myths, and legends, historical accounts, ballads, slice-of-life stories, and personal experiences are just a few examples.

What is a narrative example?

Examples of Narrative: Your friend is employing a narrative when they describe how they saw a deer on their way to school. The narratives in fairy tales are… For instance, Edgar Allan Poe’s “Annabel Lee” relates the tale of a man whose young wife passed away, but he goes and sits in her tomb to be close to her.

What is the difference between a story and a narrative?

A tale is a description of made-up characters and events. A narrative is a tale or a description of a sequence of events.

What are the seven components of a story?

  • Plot.
  • Setting.
  • Atmosphere.
  • Characterization.
  • Theme.
  • Point of view
  • Literary devices and figurative language.

What are 3 characteristics of a personal narrative?

  • Explicit intent (why this event is important to you)
  • First-person narrative (help us understand the narrator)
  • Opening phrase (question, interesting observation, or summary of purpose)
  • Arranged events and facts.
  • A justification of the necessity and how it was met.

What are the elements of a narrative text?

The plot, characters, point of view, setting, topic, conflict, and style are a few of these terms. Our ability to examine stories and decipher their meanings is improved when we are aware of how these elements function.

What is a narrative style of writing?

The fundamental goal of narrative writing is to share a character’s experience with the reader. It might be a long story or a brief anecdote, take place over a short period of time or just a few minutes, and be either fact or fiction.

What are some examples of narrative writing?

The majority of written works, such as personal essays, fairy tales, short stories, novels, dramas, screenplays, memoirs, and histories, all contain narratives. A narrative might be an imagined story with flashbacks or various timelines, or it can be a chronological list of events.

What is the purpose of narrative writing?

The reader is intended to be entertained or given a story by narrative texts. A fairy tale is an illustration of a narrative text structure. Because the form is based on a story with a beginning, middle, and finish, narrative text structures ought to be simple to recall.

What are some examples of narrative essays?

In a narrative essay, you convey a message while also telling a tale, frequently about a personal event. Therefore, the narrative serves two purposes: to entertain the audience and to highlight the significance of the experience. Find the lesson or theme in the samples of narrative essays below.

What is the purpose of narrative writing?

A narrative text’s main goal is to entertain the reader or tell a story. An illustration of a narrative text form is a fairy tale. Because the framework is based on a narrative with a beginning, middle, and finish, it should be simple to recall.

What is a narrative essay and examples?

You express a point while telling a tale, frequently about a personal experience, in a narrative essay. The goal is to explain the significance of the experience as well as to tell an amusing story. See if you can identify the lesson or subject from the narrative essay examples below.

How long is a narrative essay?

What length should a narrative essay be? It differs, but generally speaking, an excellent narrative essay is five pages long and follows a few predetermined guidelines. If your college only accepts narrative essays with a word limit of 500, simply adjust the number of blocks to meet the requirement.

What makes a good narrative?

But no matter what kind of narrative you’re writing, there are characteristics that set good stories apart from bad ones. A narrative can be successful with readers if it has strong characters, vivid descriptions, and an emotional, conflict-driven plot.

What are personal narrative essays?

A personal narrative essay is a story you decide to tell your audience because it illustrates how you see the world, yourself, and/or other people. People remember stories, therefore you may use your personal narrative essay to turn a commonplace experience into insightful criticism that can be applied to a wide audience.

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