Life Experience

This essay requires that you recall a time in your life or a particular experience during which you have felt the happiest you’ve ever felt. You are to recreate it in writing, describing in detail both what happened and the emotions you associate with the event. This serves two purposes: it demands that you reflect on your experiences so that you can be more mindful of how you want to shape your future experiences, and it encourages you to explore the possibilities of writing offers.

You should choose what you consider to be the most illustrative experience and elaborate on that experience. Your focus should be on the experience or time period and the qualities that made this experience or time period the happiest. Try to uncover the qualities of happiness in the experience.

Your introduction should include a hook, some general background information, and a thesis statement that addresses the contents of your essay. The thesis should not make a declaration (e.g. “this essay will uncover..”). Rather, your thesis should be the controlling idea of your narrative (e.g. When I ran away from home, I learned the importance of family).

Your topic sentences should support your thesis statement. Likewise, the evidence used in your paragraphs should support the topic sentences. Stick with one idea per paragraph.

Your conclusion should offer a very brief summary of your main points and perhaps a few final thoughts for your audience to consider.

Your audience is an academic reader who does not know you and has no past knowledge of the experience or time period you describe. As with any writing situation, your reader will be looking for an answer to the “so what” question; s/he will want to know why they are reading about this experience or time period, so be sure to explain why the event you describe is important to you or what others can learn from reading about it.

It is expected that you use first-person point-of-view (I, me, my). For all essays in this course, avoid 2nd person POV (you, your).

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