How to Start a Narrative Essay

a girl is writing something on a piece of paperEvery good piece of writing has to catch a reader’s attention from the very beginning. A great school paper, especially a good narrative essay, has to do that too. It not only has to be exciting but also easy to read and understand as a reader forms an opinion on whether a piece is worth reading from the first lines. If they are dull or too complicated, an impression from the rest of your essay might be ruined.

This means that paying much attention to a narrative essay introductory paragraph is crucial in order to create a high-quality piece of writing. If you struggle with introduction parts in general or with the beginning of your narrative essay in particular, you will find this article very helpful. We have put together all of the best pieces of advice on how you can start your paper with a catchy and exciting introduction.

What Are the Specifics of a Narrative Essay

A narrative essay is a type of paper that is meant to develop a student’s creativity and imagination. When writing a narrative essay, a student has to describe some fictional or real event in the form of a story that will have:

  • A catchy introduction
  • A plotline
  • An atmosphere
  • A climax
  • Conclusion

A narrative essay is often written in the first person as it commonly tells about the author’s life experiences, but there might be exclusions. A lot of such compositions performed in high school or college are obligated to use dialogue, monologue, sensory details, and other literary devices to show writing skills and knowledge. So, how to start a narrative essay introduction? Let’s take a look at the strongest narrative introduction techniques.

Start with a Quote

“There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.” – Beatrix Potter.

Quotes are great to start your essay with. Not only a narrative one but any other type of essay too. However, starting with just any random quote isn’t the right option as your beginning sentence should be relevant to the rest of your essay and also make sense to a reader.

Finding the right quote is not easy. Some of the quotes are too famous and too often used, so they seem to be too banal while others aren’t appropriate for your topic. So, the process of searching for the quote for your essay might take a while. Be patient and use the following platforms to search for the quotes:

Each narrative essay us different as it tells a different story and gives a different impression on the reader. When picking a quote, pay attention to its tone and make sure to choose the one that will suit the atmosphere of your essay.

Start with an Anecdote

“One time, I saw a balloon trapped in the branches of the tree behind our house. I couldn’t reach it from the ground, so I started climbing up. The bark of an old tree was crumbling under my feet, and small leaves were falling as I was moving up. Once I reached the balloon and tried to grab the string, it was taken away with the wind. I wasn’t able to climb down, so I waited for 4 hours for my parents to come home and get me off of the tree top.”

An anecdote is a short personal story that describes some event, situation, or personal experience. When used at the beginning of an essay, they help put a reader into a particular setting or build an atmosphere. Some anecdotes can be used to make the audience laugh, but others deliver a specific message that will help to understand the author’s ideas and point of view. They also might be sad, odd, or even tragic.

When creating an anecdote to start your essay with, remember that it has to be relevant to the main idea of your paper and set the right tone for a reader. You can add some fictional details to your anecdote but don’t make it too fantastic – remember, that anecdotes should represent the stories from real life.

Start with Statistics

“Around 70 percent of students say they have witnessed bullying in their schools. I am one of them.”

You might think that using statistics is suitable when creating a research paper, explanatory essay, or a dissertation. In other words, any other type of school paper but not a narrative essay. However, statistics can be used as a supportive fact that will make your paper more polished. It will also give the impression that you have conducted research and prepared some interesting numbers that can be used to support your ideas.

Numbers always add value and reliability to your words. They also help perceive and remember information better than when reading a plain text. Professors and teachers love finding such details in the works of their students. They know that statistics require time and effort which you can save if turning to a writing team for help.

Start with a Question

“What was there so enchanting and mysterious that made me sit there in silence with my eyes wide open? I didn’t know then and neither I know now. But this was the day when I discovered the hypnotic power of nature.”

When you start your essay with a question instantly makes your reader wonder what the answer to this question is. This is one of the most commonly used literary devices that help to establish contact with your readers and engage them.

Asking a question is also a way to boost your imagination and break through writer’s block if you experience one. Questions make you find the answers, and sometimes they can lead to very unexpected ideas.

Use questions also to make your reader involved in your story. For example,

“Have you ever wondered what our lives would be like if we couldn’t feel the taste of food?”

Such questions intrigue and speak directly to readers, therefore help to establish contact.

Wrapping Up

Starting your paper is not easy. That is the reason why many students seek help and wonder “how to write an introductory paragraph for a narrative essay?” Not always you can come up with a good idea of how to make your introduction compelling and powerful enough. It’s especially hard to write the first sentence or as it is also called a hook sentence which attracts the attention of your reader and sparks interest. However, with the help of our tips, it will definitely be easier for you to create catchy introductions to your narrative essays or even other types of school papers.