Narrative Essay Rough Draft

After reading the sample narrative (attached) and watching the lecture on vivid language and strong verbs under ‘Modules’, write your rough draft for the literacy narrative. This should include the story only. (The significance should not be incorporated just yet). Please refer back to the handout on key elements/features(attached) and the prompt overview (written below) for help to write your draft.

The first page only will have at the top left of the paper your name, the instructor’s name, the course name, and the due date all in that order.

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Your last name and page number should be on all pages of your rough draft.

Ensure to write a title or use the word ‘Title’ if you have not yet come up with a title for your work.

Ensure your rough draft is saved as doc, docx, or pdf to upload it for submission.

After you submit your rough draft Thursday, November 5 by 1:00 pm, Canvas will randomly assign you one of your classmate’s draft for peer review.

Prompt Overview:
Essay One: Literacy Narrative

Assignment: Write a 750-1,000 word narrative that tells a story about your own experience with literacy. This will be given a title and written in Times New Romans font size 12 double spaced.

Due:

Final Draft: November 15th

What is a Literacy Narrative? A Literacy Narrative is a genre of writing that tells about your experience becoming literate in a subject. A good literacy narrative will have the following features:

· A well-told story: conflict or crisis, resolution, suspense.
· Vivid detail: sights, sounds, smells, tastes, textures, descriptions of places and people.
· Significance: Even though this narrative is about you, it must have a controlling thesis (theme/central or main idea) and purpose.

Purpose: A literacy narrative is a personal story about reading or composing in any form, or context, or any language. As you consider our working definition of “literacy,” reflect on your own literacy practices and a significant moment within that literacy growth. This essay provides an opportunity for you to describe the event/moment in detail and draw deeper meaning from the experience. This essay is also the starting point for you to begin to develop your own writing voice and style, using strong verbs, vivid details, and connecting to a larger application drawn from the literacy event described.

Literacy does not only apply to competency in the areas of reading and writing (though those are certainly two areas you might explore in this paper). Your literacy narrative should explore the process of becoming literate, which we can be defined as being proficient in a certain skill or medium of communication, in whatever subject you choose. In this essay, your task will be to explore a significant event in your life through the lens of a specific literacy of your choosing (ex. dance, reading, writing, cooking, painting, etc.).

This essay should narrate a significant personal experience with literacy. Concentrate on one brief, specific memory that deals with literacy in your own life. The importance of the specific event should be obvious, not merely a “tacked on” detail; in other words, the significance should be integral to the story.

A successful narrative will include the following: a definition of the language within the subject of literacy (ex. the “language of football” might include audibles, hand gestures, physical movements, a firm grasp of the game’s rules, knowledge of how to properly gear up for a game, etc.); address a moment (or moments) of struggle in your attempt to become literate in your subject and how you overcame those challenges*; and a significant amount of sensory detail and scene work.

*Depending upon your personal literacy experience, you may also wish to address a moment in which your literacy was challenged and subsequently declined or disappeared; the narrative you choose does not necessarily have to be a positive one or result in a positive outcome.

Requirements: This essay should demonstrate your ability to:

· Craft a clear, organized narrative that explores the role that literacy plays in your life.
· Create vivid scenes using description and strong verbs.
· Use dialogue in a meaningful way.
· Convey the significance of the event being narrated (this may include a connection to a larger social or cultural issue).
· Exhibit development through the writing process (drafts, peer review workshops, conference).
· Create clear, well-edited writing that is largely free of proofreading errors and errors of grammar, mechanics, and syntax.

Steps to writing a literacy narrative:

1. Choose a topic—a single event during a brief time span.
2. Generate ideas and text—describe the setting, think about the characters, explain what happened, consider the significance.
3. Organize—chronological or plot-driven?
4. Draft—beginning, ending, and middle, title.
5. Polish—feedback, editing, proofreading, publish, and evaluate your work.

Some Brainstorming Questions

· When did you first develop your interest in this subject?
· How has writing and reading helped you develop and maintain this interest?
· How do you continue to learn that subject and maintain your passion in that subject? What is a significant moment in your learning that subject that a reader would be interested in?
· What’s the difference between an expert in your subject and a novice?
· How do you define someone who is literate in that subject and what does this teach us about the concept of literacy?

Additional Thoughts

We’ll be looking at different models of literacy narratives throughout the next few weeks. Some of these will be about traditional literacy (i.e. learning to read and write) and others will be about learning other subjects. You should feel free to write about either one. The important thing to consider is whether or not you are interested in the subject and that you have an interesting story to tell that relates to it.

It is often wise to tell the story first and then decide (often with the help of others) what the story is trying to say. This will then allow you as an author to direct the narrator of the story (and/or the characters in the story) to think through the significance of the events and connect them to a wider cultural phenomenon.

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