Personal Narrative – First Essay Instructions The first essa...

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Personal Narrative – First Essay Instructions
The first essay project is a personal narrative about a learning experience you have encountered in your life, focusing on a time you faced a stigma (a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about something, which negatively impacted your character or reputation). The purpose of the essay is to get you to think about style, organization, form, and audience while writing about a topic on which you are already an expert: yourself. Focus on finding one specific incident that encouraged a change in you, the value of the lessons learned, or the personal impact made by the experience of being stigmatized. By the end of your essay, your reader should feel that you, the writer, did change due to this experience.

One other thing:
Along with the above, I’d like you to make an innovative (inventive, “new,” not ordinary) formal choice in your essay. Simply put, your essay should not read (or, likely, resemble) a typical college essay. There is no required essay format, save that you make a choice in the form/shape of your essay that reflects the stigma you faced.

Other formal possibilities to consider:
• Write the story out of order—not chronologically—revealing the end at the beginning, etc.;
• Organize the events by hours in a day, months in a year, or different times of day (sunrise, noon, sunset, etc.);
• Divide the story into different characters/voices (obviously, you are still the focus: it’s your story); tell the same story from more than one perspective;
• Make section breaks with titles that underline your theme, à la Alexie: colors, cities, countries, song titles, seasons, bodies of water, foods, etc.

Don’t forget to stick to the same topic (your story of being stigmatized) in every section. Let different sections reflect the same underlining topic, like variations on a theme.

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These solutions may offer step-by-step problem-solving explanations or good writing examples that include modern styles of formatting and construction of bibliographies out of text citations and references. Students may use these solutions for personal skill-building and practice. Unethical use is strictly forbidden.

My life-changing voyage
My life before Paris
While I lived at home, in Tianjin, China, my life was quite ordinary. Every day I used to wait for the bus to take me to school. I was finding my self lost in thoughts, wondering through cities in my mind that I had never visited before, one of them was Paris, in France. I never travelled a lot, so when the time came to send out applications for my studies, I was quite excited with the possibility to realize one of my fantasies, and visit, possibly even live in one of these amazing cities.
The day the application results came in my mail, I had a tingling feeling in my stomach.
I was accepted to study in Paris, and there was no other thing that could top that feeling.
Life in France
I need to arrange so many things before we leave, cancel my subscriptions, pay all...

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