1st Assignment: Literacy Narrative Composition
In this assignment you are going to write a narrative essayabout a personal experience involving reading, writing, languageand/or communication which had/has a wider significance. We have seen that in Langston Hughes’s “Salvation” how the writeruses his experiences to highlight a general truth, insight -something they learned that was bigger than the experience itself. This is what you should also do.
As you write the essay, bear in mind the principle features of narrative writing that we are discussing in class. Think about how you can introduce the experience and suggest the conflict without giving too much away. Try to construct the narrative using summary and scene effectively so that you can bring your narrative to some kind of climax. Remember to include a “payoff” section at the end, in which you resolve the conflict you have described, provide a retrospective, and say something about what the events meant to you.
• Orientation – Complication – Aftermath-Resolution• Point of View• Chronological Time – Psychological Time• Scene – Summary• Show don’t tell and “Exploding the Moment”• Open-form and Closed-form Writing
In preparation for this assignment, we will look at a number of professionally written narratives for the purposes of reflection and possible imitation. Successful writers will typically have “moves” that can be useful models for us to copy.
The essay will be graded according to the following criteria:
• Essay structure • Coherence • Build-up of tension • Descriptive power in the Complication section • Effectiveness of the Introduction and Resolution • Correct Use of English
Length: around 3-4 pages, double-spaced
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