2 Autobiographical Incident Describing an important event in your life . . .From Reading to Writing In “The Great Rat Hunt” by Laurence Yep, a boy learns an important truth about his father’s view of life. In “Flying,” Reeve Lindbergh achieves a greater understanding of her father.
3 Autobiographical Incident Describing an important event in your life . . .For both writers, an experience taught them not only about their fathers but also about themselves. Writing an autobiographical incident, or firsthand account, can help you to see an important event in your life more clearly.
4 B a s i c s i n a B o x Autobiographical Incident at a Glance Middle BeginningEndDescribes the incident using descriptive details and dialogueMakes the importance clearIntroduces the incident, including the people involved and the settingTells the outcome and importance of the incidentPresents the writer’s feelings about the experienceRUBRICSTANDARDS FOR WRITINGA successful autobiographical incident shouldfocus on one well-defined incidentgrab readers’ attention at the beginningprovide background information for the incidentuse elements such as plot, character, and setting as appropriatemake the order of events clearuse descriptions or dialogue as appropriateinclude precise language and specific detailsshow why the experience was importanthave a strong conclusion that summarizes the importance of the incident
5 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Prewriting 1PrewritingWhat is all knowledge but recorded experience?Thomas Carlyle19th-century writer
6 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Prewriting 1PrewritingTo choose your autobiographical incident,Check your old diaries.Track down friends’ letters that you’ve saved.Try asking each person in your family to name an event in your life that he or she remembers.
7 Planning Your Autobiographical Incident Essay 1. Freewrite about the incident. Take a few minutes to write down everything that you remember about the incident. What happened? When? Where? Who was involved? How did you feel at the time?
8 Planning Your Autobiographical Incident Essay 2. Fill in the details. Go back to what you wrote about the incident. Flesh out the description of the time, the place, and the people involved. Create a time line to help organize the events.3. Think about the significance of the event. Why do you remember the incident? What did you learn? Did it change you?
9 Planning Your Autobiographical Incident Essay 4. Tell your story aloud. Share your story with others. Can they visualize, or picture, what happened? Do they have questions about the order of events? Take notes on their reactions.
10 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Drafting 2DraftingBegin drafting your essay. Remember that you can revise and reorganize your writing later. Try to give readers a strong sense of the incident. Show rather than tell why it is important to you. Include well chosen sensory details and dialogue as you plan your essay. Remember to start off with a strong beginning and conclude with a memorable ending.
11 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Revising 3RevisingTARGET SKILLMAKING THE ORDER OF EVENTS CLEARTo help your readers understand the order in which things happened, use transitional words and phrases. Some words that indicate time include: to start off, at first, second, next, then, after, earlier, before, later, finally, and at the present time.
12 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Revising 3RevisingTARGET SKILLMAKING THE ORDER OF EVENTS CLEARTransitions are especially important if you begin your narrative in the middle of the incident or at the conclusion of the incident.
13 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Editing and Proofreading 4Editing and ProofreadingTARGET SKILLCOMBINING SENTENCES: COMPOUND SUBJECTS AND PREDICATESSeparate sentences can often be combined by using compound subjects or compound predicates. A compound subject consists of two or more subjects joined by the coordinating conjunction and.
14 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Editing and Proofreading 4Editing and ProofreadingTARGET SKILLCOMBINING SENTENCES: COMPOUND SUBJECTS AND PREDICATESA compound predicate consists of two predicates joined by a coordinating conjunction such as and, but, or or.
15 Writing Your Autobiographical Incident Reflecting 5ReflectingFOR YOUR WORKING PORTFOLIOWhat did you learn about the significance of the incident? What did you find hardest about writing this essay? Which part of the process did you enjoy the most?