WRITING

Basic Sentences

 

Changing Sentences

 

Descriptive Writing
How to Write a Descriptive Essay

Descriptive essays create a deeply involved and vivid experience for the reader, using detailed observations and descriptions.
You have to focus on the following questions:

• What do you want to describe?
• Why are you writing your descriptive essay?
• How should you write your description?

1. As you get started on your descriptive essay, it is important for you to identify exactly what you want to describe. What is important is you must be able to perceive or experience the subject of your essay. Often, a descriptive essay will portray one of the following subjects:
 a person
 a place
 a memory
 an experience
 an object

2. It is a great to simply describe what you observe. However, when writing a descriptive essay, you often have a particular reason for writing your description. Getting in touch with this reason can help you focus your description and imbue your language with a particular perspective or emotion.
Example: Imagine that you want to write a descriptive essay about your teacher. You have chosen to write about your teacher’s physical appearance and the way that he interacts with people. However, rather than providing a general description of these aspects, you want to convey your admiration for his strength and kindness. This is your reason for writing the descriptive essay. To achieve this, you might focus one of your paragraphs on describing the way he teaches, his acts of kindness to students, the diligence he shows, but you might also describe how his hands are stained with ink from whiteboard markers or the way his tie lies askew when he is engrossed in his teaching.

3. Show , do not tell. But what’s the difference between showing and telling? Consider these two simple examples:
 I grew tired after sports practice.
 As I removed my socks, I leaned back and rested my head against the wall, my body was covered in sweat and my muscles were aching

The first sentence tells readers that you grew tired after sports practice. The second sentence shows readers that you were all sweaty and exhausted. The effective descriptive essays are loaded with such showing because they enable readers to imagine or experience something for themselves.
As you write your descriptive essay, create a vivid experience for your readers by focusing on the five senses.
 sight – what you saw
 sound – what you heard
 smell- what you smelt (fragrant or bad smells)
 touch – what your fingers sensed
 taste – what your tongue felt

Work Smart – Tips for Writing Your Descriptive Essay
Keep a checklist of the essential questions to keep in mind as you plan, draft, and revise your essay.

Planning Stage:
What or who do you want to describe?
What is your reason for writing your description?
What are the particular qualities that you want to focus on?

Drafting Stage:
What sights, sounds, smells, tastes, and textures are important
for developing your description with emotion or perspective?

Revising Stage:
Have you provided enough details and descriptions?
Have you used words that convey your emotion or perspective?
Are there any unnecessary details in your description?
Does each paragraph of your essay focus on one aspect of your
description?
Are you paragraphs ordered in the most effective way?

Adapted and modified from:

http://www.writeexpress.com/descriptive-essay.html

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