Summer break is a great time to kick back, relax and enjoy yourself and, if you’re lucky, to go on an awesome trip! But how can you translate your amazing vacation into a narrative essay for English class or work it to fit a common application prompt? Here’s some tips to help you out:
Save Mementos From Your Summer
Even if you’re not the sentimental type, make sure to document your summer travels. Take pictures, write diary entries, save train stubs. This is the best way to ensure that you’ll remember your summer well enough to look back and write about it later.
Write an Outline Before Writing Your Essay
Regardless of whether you spent your summer break in Madison, Wisconsin or Madrid, Spain, you should plan out what you’re going to write before diving in. Make a list of what you’ve done over the summer so that you can later narrow down a focus for the essay itself. Keep in mind that the best essay topics aren’t always on the most exciting activities an essay about getting stuck in traffic on the way to the airport on the way to Denver could work better than an essay on hiking the Grand Canyon and looking out at the incredible view.
Since you’re going to keep a record of your trip and come up with an outline before writing your essay, you should be able to put some detail into your essay. Be as specific as possible when it comes to your word choice. If you’re talking about some gelato that you ate in Italy, don’t say that it was “delicious.” Instead, say that it was “creamy and chocolatey, with a note of vanilla.”
Focus on Feelings About Your Trip, Not What You Did
If you spent the summer on the beach in Cape Cod, you shouldn’t write about what you did. You should write instead about how you felt while there. An essay that reads “I went to beach, then had lobster for dinner” is not quite as exciting as one that goes, “As I went for a walk on the beach, I thought about how lucky I was to be able to enjoy nature.” Feelings translate better into text than events, and you should try to place those feelings into context.
Stick to Writing About a Small Moment
With any essay you write especially a short one it’s important to focus a narrow moment in time. Don’t write about your entire week in Paris. Instead, write about the moment you got lost in the city at midnight and fumbled your way home in the dark. You don’t have to pick a particularly glamorous moment from your trip, but you should pick one that meant something to you.
Edit Your Essay Carefully
The shorter the essay, the more important precision is. Regardless of length, make sure to carefully read over what you’ve written to make sure every sentence conveys the message you most want displayed. The editing process matters just as much as the writing process, even if it seems less so.
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I will never forget this year’s holidays. At first I thought these holidays would be very boring, because I was going at the seaside with my family. I fought I would be looking forward to come back to school, but I was wrong. I can say my holidays were one of the best in my life.
The beginning was quite boring, but on the 15th of July I went with my parents and my family by the sea. We spent 3 weeks there! We lived at nice, but quite expensive hotel, I think. Our accomodation was in a really good condition. There were two rooms, huge bathroom, terrace with jacuzzi and a swimming-pool in the front of the builing. The hotel was near the sea, it was really comfortable. Sometimes we were going back from the beach late at night, quite tired and hungry. During those three weeks I met a lot of interesting and kind people. In fact, I spent with them most of the time. They have become my friends. We were building sandcastles, we were swimming, we visited many interesting places and we were sunbathing. We were also doing many wild things, it was unforgettable. The weather was great- every morning I was waking up to a deep blue sky and blazing sun. Only one day it was raining, but the rain was quite warm.
I enjoyed my holidays. It was great for my health. I was lying on a beach and relaxing... All tensions disappeared. This year’s holidays were worth remembering.
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