Revising a Narrative

Time to revise your narrative and edit, if needed, your essay!

Have I included only necessary events?
You have included only necessary events if each event covers a critical experience during the phase. As you read each event, ask yourself, “What’s the point?” If you can’t think of the point, cut the event from your narrative.
Show me an example of an event, phrase, or image that you’re removed from your narrative because there was no point for it to be there.
1.Have I included enough sensory details?
You have included enough sensory details if the reader can truly experience the sights, sounds,
and smells associated with the phase.
2. Show me an example of a place in your story that didn’t have enough sensory details.
3. Show me how you added sensory details to that very same place in the story.
Have I used effective transition words and phrases?
Your transitions will be most effective if you use a variety of them. Using only transitions that indicate time can become tedious. First one thing happened, then another thing happened, next to a third thing happened,…A variety of transitions will help you indicate not just the order of events but also their meaning.
4. Show me where you used a time transition.
5. Now replace that time transition with something else. Try words like though, as a result, also,
because, and usually.
How can figures of speech add to my writing?
When you revise for word choice, be sure that you have incorporated a few figures of speech and have used specific nouns. Figures of speech can make your narrative writing more engaging. A simile is a comparison of two things using the words like or as: Her hair swished like a velvet curtain. A metaphor is a comparison of two things in which no word of comparison (like or as) is used:
He’s a bolt of lightning.
Personification is a literary device in which the author speaks of or describes an animal, object, or idea as if it were a person: My bicycle was happy to be washed. Onomatopoeia is the use of a word whose sound suggests its meaning, as in clang, buzz, and twang. The whirring of the buzz saw surprised us.
6. Show me where you added figurative language to your narrative.
Have I varied my sentence beginnings and used long and short sentences effectively?
When you revise for sentence fluency, be sure that you have a variety of sentence beginnings and lengths.
You have used long and short sentences effectively if they enhance the meaning and impact of your story. Long sentences can carry multiple details and show relationships between the ideas. Very short sentences, because they stand out, can be used for dramatic impact and emphasis.
7. Show me a paragraph that didn’t vary the sentence beginnings or had sentences all the same length. Now revise that paragraph.

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