What Are The 5 Things to Avoid While Writing A Narrative Essay?

A narrative essay is the most common type of essay that teachers assign students as part of their academic qualifications. Starting from school, students at different schools and colleges face this kind of writing task. Due to this, knowing the things required when writing a narrative essay becomes necessary. As a student, you cannot compose a good narrative unless you know what it is, what purpose it serves, and what mistakes to avoid.

So, keeping this in view, today’s article is all about a narrative essay. In this post, you will find its detailed definition and a detailed note on its purpose of writing. Along with this, the 5 most common mistakes that you must avoid when writing a narrative essay will also be part of today’s discussion. So, let’s get started with the following question.

What is actually a narrative essay? Is it different from personal essays?

A narrative essay is an essay type in which you narrate or discuss a story. This story can be about your own or someone else’s experience. This essay provides specific and sensory details about the essay to draw the attention of the readers. Many people ask the question that why it is called a narrative essay. The reason is that to write such an essay, as a writer, you use a particular way of writing and explaining the events, known as narration.

Coming towards the second question, personal essays and narrative essays are commonly taken as the same. However, there lies a big difference between these two types of essays. A personal essay is about lessons learned through personal experiences. On the other hand, a narrative essay is more about lessons learned from nature, the world, or the experiences of others. So, writing a narrative essay is different from writing a personal essay.

What is the purpose of narrative essay writing?

Narrative essay writing can serve many purposes. Its purpose changes based on its type, whether fiction or non-fiction and a real experience or a fairy tale. However, the primary purpose of telling stories in an attractive way that draws the reader’s attention is always the same in every type of narrative essay. Telling a story in a compelling way is very challenging for novice writers like you. To help you overcome this challenge, many essay writing services are out there. You can take their help if you feel so.

5 things to avoid when writing a narrative essay

After reading the information above, you have got a good idea of what narrative essay writing is like and its purpose. However, the primary topic of today’s discussion is explaining the 5 things to avoid when writing this essay. Let’s move forward and explain those 5 things now. Hence, a brief description of those 5 important things is as follows:

1. Lack of suspense and foreshadowing

Many writers fall short in grabbing the attention of their readers. The primary reason behind this is probably a deficiency in suspense building. Building suspense in the essay intrigues the reader, and they read to explore more about the essay topic. In addition to this, the suspense and foreshowing compel the readers to anticipate, wonder, and make guesses about the topic. Overall, it binds the reader with your essay writing. Therefore, you should avoid not including suspense in your narrative essay. Build the suspense and let the readers swim into your essay.

2. Information overloading

When you are writing a narrative essay, there is tons of information in your mind, but you cannot include each and every piece of information in your essay. The reason is that doing so will lead to an information overload in your essay, which most readers and teachers do not like. Therefore, you must avoid giving an explanation of each and every action of the story character. It is an essay in which you have a limited word count. So, the best practice is that you must stick to describing the key points about the character.

3. Avoid second-person narrative

One of the common mistakes that students make when writing a narrative essay is that they use a second-person narrative in it. Doing this is not acceptable at all in a narrative essay. The reason is that this essay writing is about storytelling. This story can be yours or based on someone else’s experiences. So, there should not be any use of a second-person narrative. As a writer, you can use first or third-person narrative, but not the second. Therefore, the number 3rd thing to avoid is the use of a second person in the essay.

4. Not highlighting the main points of your story

The success of your narrative essay depends on your story. If it is powerful enough to grab the attention of the readers, your success is guaranteed. Sometimes, the story can be powerful, but its presentation makes things hard for you. You do not bother to highlight the main points of your story in the essay. This harms the essay’s success a lot. The reason is that not a single reader reads the whole content of an essay. He just looks for the main points, understand them, and this is it. Therefore, you must avoid doing this and highlight the main points of your story by making them bold.

5. Avoid slang, too formal language, and arguments

Avoiding slang and giving arguments is the number 5th thing. The slangs make your writing too informal which most teachers do not like. Narrative essay writing is academic writing, so it cannot contain slang. Many students give arguments; this practice is also very wrong. It is because it is not a persuasive essay. Here, you only need to describe the story, and that is it.


Conclusively, these are the 5 mistakes that you must avoid while writing a narrative essay. If you do so, it means you are on the road to writing a successful narrative essay. Hence, do not be too formal and argumentative in your narrative essay. Be original and explain the story in first-person narrative.

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