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How To Write A Remembered Event Essay

"American Childhood"by Anne Dillard is a good example of using chronological organization. In this story, Dillard tells a memory from her childhood one winter morning when she was 7 years old and got in trouble for throwing snowballs at cars, being chased down an ally by an adult.

Introduction: Dillard uses a frame story to explain the other characters, setting and scene. She explains that at 7, she was used to playing sports with boys and that taught her how to fling herself at something. She then finishes the introduction by telling the reader "I got in trouble throwing snowballs, and have seldom been happier since".

Body: In the body of the paper, Dillard tells the story chronologically, in the order that it happened:

  1. Waiting on the street with the boys in the snow.
  2. Watching the cars.
  3. Making iceballs.
  4. Throwing the iceball and having it hit the windshield of a car, breaking it.
  5. The car pulling over and stopping.
  6. A man getting out of the car and chasing them.
  7. The kids running for their lives.
  8. The man chasing her and Mikey around the neighborhood, block after block.
  9. The pounding and the straining of the chase.
  10. The man catching them when they could not get away.
  11. The man's frustration and "You stupid kids" speech.

Conclusion: Dillard returns to the idea that this was her supreme moment of happiness and says if the driver would have cut off their heads, she would have "died happy because nothing has required so much of me since as being chased all over Pittsburg in the middle of winter--running terrified, exhausted--by this sainted, skinny, furious redheaded man who wished to have a word with us." She ends the piece with an ironic comment "I don't know how he found his way back to his car."

Presentation on theme: "Basic Features of a Remembered Event Essay"— Presentation transcript:

1 Basic Features of a Remembered Event Essay

2 Basic Features: Remembering an Event
A Well-Told StoryThe story in the essay should arouse curiosity and suspense, structure the narrative around conflict, build to a climax, and lead to a change or discovery of some kindIt must be set in a specific time and place, and use dialogue effectivelyReaders should be able to empathize or identify with the narrator and understand his or her point of view

3 Basic Features: Remembering an Event
Vivid Description of People and PlacesSpecific details in the essay describe what people look like, how they dress, gesture, and talkSensory images show what the narrator saw, heard, smelled, touched, and tasted

4 Autobiographical Significance
Basic Features: Remembering an EventAutobiographical SignificanceTo make a point, the essay should include:Feelings and thoughts from the time the event took placeReflections on the past from the present perspectiveDetails and words chosen to create a dominant impression


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