Descriptive essay: Easy and helpful writing tips
As a rule, the fact that you need to write even the shortest assignment can spoil the mood of almost any student. Not everybody knows that there are myriads types of essays. Hence, you need to be aware of how exactly they differ from one another. That is why you might begin asking yourself and later turn to Google search with the question, "how to write a descriptive essay?"
So, let's start with the descriptive essay definition. Do you know the features of the essay and how we define this type of writing? What is a descriptive essay in general? To figure this out, you always have to keep in mind the word "describe," as it is, obviously, closely connected to the core idea of the essay. So, a descriptive essay is a paper aimed to illustrate something using your own language, words, and thoughts. An excellent descriptive essay should create a full picture of a person or an object which you describe so that the reader would see it as if it were a tangible thing.
Writing a descriptive essay: Important aspects
First, one of the most important questions to answer when you start writing a descriptive essay is,"What is the purpose of a descriptive essay?"
The purpose of the descriptive essay is to create a detailed image of a situation, particular life experience, certain feeling or emotion, a person or a place, etc. You don't have to argue or persuade the reader - your task is to paint a vivid and easy-to-imagine picture using words, so the descriptive essay ideas given at the end of this article will definitely be useful. But, does it mean that the descriptive essay format is different?
Although such a genre doesn't require you to follow very strict rules, in comparison to other types, this essay must be logically organized. The reader will go through the essay, paragraph by paragraph, and if some parts of the paper lose their logical connection, it will be impossible to convey your message correctly.
The descriptive essay structure basics
The format of this essay type is based on the general rules of academic writing. However, its parts have to create a coherent impression of what you describe. Therefore, descriptive essay structure includes all the essential components such as introduction, body text, and conclusion. The introduction explains the purpose of your essay. Apart from the opening sentences, it should also have the thesis statement.
How to start a descriptive essay effectively
Now, let's discuss the layout of a descriptive essay in more details. First, we will take a look at some tips on how to start a descriptive essay.
This kind of essay requires a higher degree of creativity, but it doesn't mean that it doesn't follow conventional rules. That is why you begin with an introductory paragraph.
What should a descriptive essay introduction include?
This part plays a crucial role because it is the opening section of your essay. Hence, it should be attractive for the readers so that they would like to continue reading your work. Here, you explain the reasons you describe this particular object, event or a person. Your introduction should have hooking sentences to draw the reader's attention within the first several minutes. You may use a witty anecdote or a famous quotation to create a good opening. Another important thing you mustn't forget is the thesis statement for your essay.
The core idea: How to write a thesis statement for a descriptive essay?
A descriptive essay thesis is one of the most impactful aspects of your writing. It covers the topic in general and tells your readers the focus of the essay. Don't describe abstract notions, as it isn't a good idea for such an essay since your thesis will be challenging to develop. However, a thesis statement could be called the heart of any paper, and the descriptive essay isn't an exception. A good thesis statement should contain the central idea of your essay and the reasoning reflected in the body paragraphs.
How to start a body paragraph for a descriptive essay?
As we have already mentioned, generally a descriptive essay consists of five paragraphs. It means that your body text has to be divided into three main subsections. The first and the last ones are your introduction and conclusion sections. But, the three body paragraphs should prove the primary point of your thesis and be well-organized and structured logically. When you go into detailed characteristics of something, you would want to appeal to people's senses. However, don't try to activate all five senses, as you'll overload your paper. Choose three with the help of which your readers would be able to visualize the object as realistically as possible. These three paragraphs should be focused on these different senses. Every one of them must have only one main idea. Therefore, the most successful way to start a body paragraph for a descriptive essay is to write this main point at the beginning and continue developing it in the next sentences.
Descriptive essay conclusion writing rules
In case you are a bit puzzled and don't know how to write a conclusion for a descriptive essay, here are some tips. It would be a good idea to write an extensive descriptive essay conclusion which gives your overall impression of the object you described, and not just restating your thesis statement laid out at the beginning. You can also summarize the key points you mentioned in the previous paragraphs and say how they are connected.
Descriptive essay outline example
The outline may vary based on the topic you choose, but its general structure will probably look like this:
- Include opening sentences.
- Write background info (several reasons why you are writing the essay).
- Include the thesis statement.
II. The First paragraph
- This paragraph introduces the main topic, describes some aspect related to it.
- Write a topic sentence which gives the readers the main idea of the whole passage.
- The text in this paragraph should be connected to the topic sentences and thesis statement.
III. The Second paragraph
- Start with the transition word or phrase which would tell the readers they are about to move to the next part of the essay.
- Focus on the next aspect of the object you are describing.
- Write it the same way as the first one.
IV. The Third paragraph
- The last paragraph of your text body covers the third aspect of your chosen topic.
- Don't forget to use transition words and phrases before moving to the last paragraph.
- Provide a summary of the text which you just have written.
- Repeat the idea of your thesis, and major points of your paper, but express them differently.
Good descriptive essay topics to use
These topics for a descriptive essay will be a good example for your future work. Check them out and try to come up with your own good descriptive essay ideas.
- Describe your role model. Think about this person's character, choose and describe the features you would like to have.
- Do you remember your first teacher? Describe his or her character.
- Describe the family traditions you consider to be the most important to you.
- If you were allowed to make a tattoo, what would be and why? Give as many details as possible.
- Remember an important event in your life. How old were you? Where did it take place? Describe the feelings and emotions you had.