Miami Essay

  • How you or your family came to Miami”
    How did you and/or your family come here, to this city? Tell the story in a scene, moment to moment. Include setting, dialogue, gestures, names of people and places. Tell us the year, the season, the moment-to-moment sensations of your journey.

or

  • My first time in Miami. . .”
    Give us a scene that you remember from when you first arrived in Miami. If you settled in Miami, describe where you (and/or your family) settled: address, physical description of the place where you lived, neighbors, landscape, streets. Give sounds, colors, names of places and people. How old were you? What was the year? The season? The weather? Give us a specific account of one moment in your life then and your impressions of the place. Include dialogue, setting, gestures.

or

  • What it’s like to live in Miami. . .”
    Give us a scene about living in Miami now. Give sounds, colors, names of place and people. Give us a year, the season, the weather. Include dialogue, setting, gestures

The story you tell could be one that you witnessed or one that was told to you. Do not state the story’s significance. It must emerge from the details or actions narrated. Tell the story as it comes to you, but tell it in a scene, moment to moment. It could be a memory or a story of when you were a child or a story told about a relative or sibling or a parent.

Be sure to have:

  1. setting/ location
  2. time of day,
  3. year,
  4. season,
  5. gestures (people sit, stand, move),
  6. dialogue (one line per speaker, tags;he/she said;)

NOTE: Use past or present tense but be consistent.

Which one is a scene? A or B? Remember that your stories need to be on scene. Create a movie in the mind of the reader, moment to moment.

  1. I remember when my sister announced she was getting married. It was New Year’s Eve in 2004. She was very young and our family was concerned. My mother cried and my father got upset.
  2. My sister Katya walked into the kitchen, where we’d gathered – Mom, Dad, Tio Alberto and his second wife– to bring in the New Year. Mom had handed out the champagne glasses. Katya said, “I’m getting married.” It was 2004. She was sixteen. Tio Alberto, who was already drunk, raised his empty champagne glass to her. Dad held his close to his chest. “Sure, my love,” he said. “You’re getting married. Someday.”

500 words