Writing a Foolproof Narrative Essay Outline

, Staff Editor
Updated July 22, 2020
student writing a narrative essay
    student writing a narrative essay
    elenaleonova / E+ / Getty Images

Use narrative essay examples to help you understand what a narrative essay is. If you understand what a narrative essay is all about, you’re ready to use an outline to start organizing it. This essay outline is a 5 paragraph narrative essay outline you can use in middle school, high school, or college to craft everything from personal narratives to literary narratives.

How to Write a Narrative Essay Outline

Whether you create your own narrative essay outline or use a template, you’ll want to follow the same steps. Narrative essays typically tell a story and share the moral of that story using a chronological format. This is the simplest way to craft a winning narrative essay.

Introduction: Share Your Point and How It Relates to You

Draw the reader in with a hook statement that grabs their attention using some element of your story to open your introductory paragraph. Ask a rhetorical question or make a statement about the topic of your story as it relates to the general public.

This short paragraph will also tell readers how the point of this story relates to you. End your introduction by sharing a thesis statement that clearly states the moral of your story.

Body Paragraph One: Set up the Story

Your first body paragraph should set up the background of the story. Use descriptive and concise language to give readers the most important details they need to understand the story you’re about to tell.

These details might include the setting, the main characters, and the onset of the story you’ll share throughout the essay. Make sure every detail is integral to the story.

Body Paragraph Two: Briefly Tell the Story up to the Climax

The second body paragraph in your essay should get to the heart of the story you’re telling. Use one or two short anecdotes or facts to tell the story up to the climax, or turning point of the story.

Body Paragraph Three: Share How the Story Ends

The final body paragraph in your essay will share how your story ended. You can use short anecdotes or facts to share the resolution of your experience.


Conclusion: Restate Your Point and Relate It to Readers

Your conclusion paragraph is where you wrap up the whole essay. Restate the point of your essay, then share how this might relate to other readers’ lives. Your last sentence can be some type of call to action that asks readers to think more about the topic.

5 Paragraph Narrative Essay Outline Template

Learning how to write an outline for a narrative essay is easy when you use a narrative outline PDF. Click on the image of the outline to download, edit, and save your own outline. If you need help accessing the PDF, check out these troubleshooting tips.

Narrative essay outline sample

Narrative essay outline sample

Click to View & Download

Tell Your Story

Creating an outline for your narrative essay helps you keep the information in chronological order. The more detailed your outline is, the easier it will be to write the essay. The easiest way to write a narrative essay outline is to think of it like a children’s book with brief text and a beginning, middle, and end.