Descriptive Essay

Descriptive Essay Writing

Last updated on: Feb 9, 2023

How To Write An Impactful Descriptive Essay?

By: Cathy A.

12 min read

Reviewed By: Melisa C.

Published on: Dec 17, 2019

Descriptive Essay

Wondering how to write an impressive descriptive essay? Writing a descriptive essay is both fun and challenging. You need to describe the main topic in detail and by engaging the five senses of the readers.

Students usually get this type of essay in high school and college. Writing a descriptive essay is different from other essays.

You need to focus on describing a certain person, place, or event.

Luckily for you, the following blog post will provide some helpful tips on how to create an engaging essay.

Continue reading to learn how to write an A-worthy descriptive essay.

Descriptive Essay

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What is a Descriptive Essay?

A descriptive essay is a detailed paper that describes a place, person, situation, object, or emotion. Different people have different points of view and your job is to explain yours in detail.

You may be asked to write a descriptive essay about the beach or forest or about a person or situation. The purpose of this essay is to test the writer’s ability in expressing and explaining their experiences.

Descriptive writing should create a picture in the reader’s mind. You may be required to write a descriptive essay as a high school or college essay assignment.

For a compelling essay, using adjectives and adverbs, details, and figurative language is fundamental. Without proper usage of words, you will not be able to invoke the readers' emotions.

What is the Purpose of a Descriptive Essay?

The purpose of a descriptive essay is to describe a person, place, or personal experience in vivid detail so that the reader can create a picture in his mind.

The descriptive essay is written to get the reader to understand by using descriptive language. It is different from narrative essays, where the writer tells the story about someone else. Usually, it starts with a real-life event and then the content follows the author's imagination.

Descriptive essays are not intended to persuade the reader or show facts and figures to prove something. Descriptive essays are like word paintings that contain personal and descriptive details and these are mostly assigned to students of creative writing.

How to Start a Descriptive Essay

A strong start for your descriptive essay is essential. Analyze your topic from every angle and document the following details:

Analyze the main subjects in detail and observe minute things.

  • Start with observing all the possible aspects of the subject.
  • Don't just observe the object but also its surroundings.
  • Focus on details and features of the subject and develop opinions about them.
  • Be thoughtful; this first step will be the basis for the essay.

Physical Settings

Describing the physical settings is a must in a descriptive essay. When describing, keep the following points in mind.

  • Focus on the subject's position and observe nearby objects
  • Note the time of day and kind of lighting: natural or imitated
  • Physical settings: all the basic and decorative elements
  • The position and shape of the objects
  • Alignment and any other observable information

Physical Features

When describing the physical features of the subject, living or nonliving, consider the following points.

  • Living or nonliving; describe the features in detail
  • The subject's skin color, texture, smoothness, expression, and age
  • The features of inanimate objects in the picture, color, surface, and texture

Create Drama

Storytelling and drama are the life and blood of a good descriptive essay. It turns your essay into an exciting and interesting piece of writing. However, be subtle about adding drama to your sentence structure and add it to complement your story only.

Focus On Your Feelings

Focus on how you feel about the particular topic or person and stick to it. It is easy to get involved when working on the essay. But, focus on your own feelings and write an essay based on them.

Use Of Specific Vocabulary

Vocabulary is important. Select the best words for describing an action or object. Don't always use the first word that comes to mind.

Write slowly and thoughtfully, and use specific words to convey your thoughts.

Psychological Aspects

Writing about a certain situation or behavior of a person focuses on the mental aspects and emotions involved in them.

For Example, describe your emotions when your friend misplaced your notes right before the exam.

You may have had several emotions in that incident. Maybe you were prepared for exams, but this situation put you under pressure and made you feel frustrated and hurt.

Explore those emotions and describe the feelings they aroused. Describe the body language also, if relevant.

Ask Yourself, WHY?

This is the most valuable tip for students. When you are looking at a particular subject, and having difficulty analyzing its aspects, ask yourself "WHY".

  • Why is the subject the way it is?
  • Why does the person you are describing have such a deep-set and cold eyes?
  • Why is the animal so wounded and terrified?
  • Why is this particular place famous?

It is a good practice and after some time you will do it naturally. Knowing the why is important if you want to describe your topic properly.

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How To Write A Descriptive Essay?

When you write a descriptive essay, you help your readers visualize an event, a person, or a story. It is written to make your readers feel what you feel about the respective subject.

A descriptive essay seeks to appeal to some or all of the audience’s five senses. Some key things to consider are:

  • Discussing your subject thoroughly
  • Focusing on details and adding them in your essay
  • Sharing your personal feelings and experience about the subject
  • Observing and describing all sensory details of your subject

Here are the steps to write a descriptive essay easily.

1- Choose an Engaging and Focused Essay Topic

An important step that all strong descriptive essays share is having a focused topic. Before you make the outline, identify the purpose of your essay and use it to create an appropriate thesis statement.This type of paper does not require much personal opinion from you. Its main goal should be focusing on information that will make a dominant impression in readers' minds instead.

2- Research and Gather Important Details

When writing a descriptive essay, it is important to make sure you include as many details and sensory information as possible. This helps your reader fully understand the images that are being presented in their mind's eye.You can organize these ideas into categories so they're easy for you to access when needed.

3- Create an Outline of Your Essay

Your essays must be organized by having subheadings that are clear and concise. Group your main points into individual body paragraphs, each of which should only cover one idea or topic at a time.

4- Write your Essay’s Introduction

A good introductory paragraph is much like a road map because it provides direction to your readers.

It provides relevant background information before diving into more specific details related to how something works or why something happens. These could include statistics or stories from real-life scenarios.

5- Write the Main Body Section of Your Essay

Each body paragraph should start with a topic sentence that keeps the reader hooked on what you are saying. Use specific details instead of making generalized statements, and make sure to give examples if necessary.

6- End with a Strong Conclusion

The conclusion of an essay is the final paragraph, and it should summarize all that you have said throughout. It's a good idea to restate the main points and key details from the essay in this section.

It is important so the reader has everything they need for better understanding before ending off on something new.

If necessary be sure not to introduce anything odd or unusual, to avoid any confusion.

7- Proofread and Revise the Essay Carefully

Once you are done writing the essay, proofread and revise it carefully. Make sure that it is free from all kinds of errors.

Descriptive Essay Outline

Like all the other essays, a descriptive essay also follows the usual 5-paragraph essay structure and format.Before starting, it is important to create an outline. Following are the fundamental elements of your descriptive essay outline:

Descriptive Essay Introduction

The introduction sets the footing for the entire essay. Before heading towards the body section, the reader will come across the introduction.

It is the first impression of your work. It is very important to write an engaging introduction so that the readers read the essay till the end.

Start the essay in an easy-to-understand way and language. Provide background information on your topic so they can understand it and its importance.

To make sure the reader feels your emotions and decides to continue reading further, incorporate the following points in your introduction.

The following tips will guide you on how to write a good introduction for a descriptive essay.

  • Attract the reader's attention with an interesting fact, phrase, or quote
  • Don't bombard them with information
  • Go straight to the main pointsInclude enough information to introduce the topic and its significance.
  • Summarize the argument and the main topic and craft your thesis statement

Descriptive Essay Thesis Statement

A thesis statement is an integral part of your essay. It focuses on the argument and the writer’s main idea, which is to be discussed in the essay.

This statement also provides the writer with a chance of explaining the purpose and scope of the topic. It is intriguing and engaging.

A thesis statement is written at the end of the introduction, it is mainly a single sentence that describes the essay objective. The thesis statement should act as a guide to the reader on what to expect in the essay body. It is like a table of contents of a book, to the reader on contents you will get an idea of what the book is all about so you get to understand it better.

It is like a table of contents of a book. By reading it, you will get an idea of what the book is all about.

A good thesis should contain the following things:

  • Define the essay scope - it should narrow down all the points to clarify its purpose.
  • Avoid using common words - you should be creative with your choice of words.
  • Create suspense - it should attract the reader to the body paragraphs of the essay.

For further information on how to write a thesis for a descriptive essay, check out the following examples.

  • Descriptive essay example about a Place

“Even though monarchy is long gone, Buckingham Palace is here to remind us of the aesthetic beauty of that era.”

  • Descriptive essay example about a Person

“One of the characteristics of Spider-Man is his youthfulness, and the fact that he talks to himself more than Hamlet.”

  • Descriptive essay example about an Emotion

“For numerous reasons, the dark forest is my greatest fear, though not a fear which is necessarily smart to face.”

Descriptive Essay Body Paragraphs

Body paragraphs of the essay come next after the introduction and thesis statement. It is the main part that continues your essay.

Usually, an essay consists of three body paragraphs but you can add more if needed.

Don't add more than one central idea in one paragraph. Fusing different ideas will confuse the reader.

Build your paragraphs according to the thesis and introduction.

  • Start each body paragraph with the main sentence
  • Use transitions to move between paragraphs smoothly
  • Each paragraph should be five to six sentences long

Descriptive Essay Conclusion

The concluding paragraph is the last part of an essay, and probably your last chance to impress your reader.

The last part that the reader can keep in mind is the conclusion, which is as important as the rest of the essay.

To make it interesting and thought-provoking, include the following points:

  • Restate the thesis statement
  • Summarize the main points
  • Add an intriguing closing statement

After writing the conclusion, make a review of your essay, identify the mistakes and maintain a good tone throughout the essay.

Descriptive Essay Format Sample

Here is the descriptive essay format to help you understand how you can write a winning descriptive essay.

DESCRIPTIVE ESSAY FORMAT (PDF)

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Descriptive Essay Topics Ideas

Descriptive essay topics are often related to physical settings, locations, living beings, and objects.

Make sure that your essay includes the five senses, touch, taste, smell, sight, hearing, or at least one of them. It depends on the topic and the kind of feeling that you want to arouse.

Below are some descriptive essay ideas and ways to achieve them.

Living Beings

When you want to write about a person like a family member, consider the following elements:

  • Gender, age, complexion, and expressions
  • Physical features
  • Height, body type, and approximate weight
  • Kind of clothes

These details will add depth to the description and your readers will actually see your narrative.

When animals are the subject, you can add the above points plus the following details:

  • Species and animal
  • Size, weight, color
  • Behavior patterns
  • Temperament
  • Trained or wild?
  • Real or fictional?

Inanimate Subjects

Geographic locations and structures.

When your subject is a place or a building, add the following points:

  • Research about the place and its historical background
  • The color and the building's type
  • A famous place or landmark to draw a comparison and inspire interest

Human behavior and psychology is a compelling descriptive essay subject. When writing about it:

  • Describe the consequences of a particular behavior
  • Discuss the emotional dimension of the topic and how you perceive it personally

Event Or Travel Experience

A travel experience makes a good descriptive essay since you have experienced the event first hand.

Give a detailed description of the place, people at the venue, and the atmosphere of the location.

Idea, Concept, or Occupation

When writing on such topics, focus on how an idea or concept affects society and its different aspects.

Example Descriptive Essay Topics for Students

Choosing a topic for your descriptive essay is quite interesting. You get to choose something that you have an emotional connection with.

When writing a descriptive essay about a person or place, adding their personal traits will be helpful.

Some examples of descriptive essay topics include:

  • Compose a detailed descriptive essay about your best friend.
  • Describe a fancy place that you have created.
  • Describe your dream vacation destination.
  • Describe your favorite mall or store.
  • Describe your childhood home.
  • Descriptive essay about nature.
  • Descriptive essay about a place you visited.
  • Describe the personality of your Maths teacher.
  • Discuss the main characters of your favorite movie.
  • Descriptive essay about chocolate.
  • Write an essay using unique Words to describe yourself.
  • What makes me unique?
  • My first love.

Descriptive Essay Examples

Study these descriptive essay examples and sample papers to understand the main idea, structure, and purpose of descriptive essays.

DESCRIPTIVE ESSAY ON MARKET (PDF)

DESCRIPTIVE ESSAY EXAMPLE PERSON (PDF)

To help you understand how to write a great descriptive essay, we have a whole blog post dedicated to it. We know that talking about something is one thing and demonstrating it is completely different.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the features of a descriptive essay.

A descriptive essay provides a perfect opportunity for writers to express their feelings on any subject. Descriptive writing has rich sensory details which appeal to all of your senses.

How do you start a descriptive essay introduction?

The introduction to the descriptive essay should set the scene and introduce the main topic. You can use these sensory details to get a sense of what the essay is all about.

What are the two types of descriptive essays?

There are two types of descriptive essays. The first type deals with people, and the second one is about objects.

What are the elements of a descriptive essay?

Here are the key elements of a descriptive essay.

  • Sensory details
  • Figurative language
  • Central and main theme
  • Precise and clear language
  • Proper organization of ideas

What makes good descriptive writing?

Good and effective descriptive writing consists of vivid sensory details that appeal to all senses including the sense of sight, smell, touch, hearing, and taste. Moreover, these essays also explain people’s feelings in writing.

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Finance Essay, Literature

Cathy has been been working as an author on our platform for over five years now. She has a Masters degree in mass communication and is well-versed in the art of writing. Cathy is a professional who takes her work seriously and is widely appreciated by clients for her excellent writing skills.

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example of a descriptive essay outline

Descriptive Essay: Your Guide to Writing an Effective One

example of a descriptive essay outline

A descriptive essay is one of the four main types of essays, alongside narrative, argumentative, and expository essays. Among these, descriptive essays can be particularly challenging because they demand a keen eye for detail and an appreciation for aesthetics. By vividly describing scenes and details, you engage your reader’s senses, making your essay memorable and engaging. In this guide, our essay writers will break down the writing process for you, offering step-by-step instructions, practical examples, and clear definitions to help you excel in your next assignment.

What is a Descriptive Essay?

Descriptive writing aims to vividly portray something through essays, helping readers visualize and feel the scene or object being described. Such essays draw on detailed descriptions to create a clear and impactful image that not only presents the subject but also evokes emotions and memories.

There are three main techniques used in descriptive writing: naming, detailing, and comparing .

Naming identifies the subject and its characteristics, answering questions like 'What is it?' and 'What features does it have?'

Detailing elaborates on these features, providing answers to detailed questions such as 'How many are there?' and 'What is its value?' Techniques like synesthesia and comparisons enhance these descriptions.

Comparing uses similes and metaphors to make descriptions more vivid, linking the subject to familiar concepts.

Description vs. Descriptive Essay

What Is the Purpose of a Descriptive Essay?

The purpose of a descriptive essay is multifaceted. Primarily, it allows writers to give readers a vivid impression of a person, place, or event, making the subject come alive through words. By using detailed descriptions, writers can help readers visualize settings and characters as if they were seeing them firsthand.

Additionally, descriptive essays can serve to clarify abstract ideas. By describing these concepts with concrete images and examples, writers make complex ideas easier to understand and more relatable to the reader.

Descriptive essays also aim to make information more memorable. When details are vivid, they are more likely to stick in the reader's mind, enhancing recall and engagement with the text.

Lastly, it can bolster an argument by providing concrete, detailed evidence that supports a point of view. This helps persuade the reader by making the argument more tangible and credible.

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Descriptive Essay Topics

When you're tasked with writing a descriptive essay, you'll usually get a prompt that asks you to describe something. These descriptive essay prompts allow you to explore different settings, time periods, and imaginative scenarios in your essays. 

Personal Prompts:

  • Describe a favorite childhood memory.
  • Describe a treasured family heirloom.

Imaginative Prompts:

  • Describe a day in the life of a pirate.
  • Describe what it would be like to explore an underwater city.

Historical Prompts:

  • Describe the atmosphere of a bustling ancient marketplace.
  • Describe the experience of witnessing a significant moment in history, like the moon landing or the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Nature Prompts:

  • Describe the sights and sounds of a peaceful forest at dawn.
  • Describe the feeling of standing at the edge of a majestic waterfall.

Everyday Prompts:

  • Describe the chaos of a busy morning commute in a big city.
  • Describe the tranquility of a sunset picnic in the countryside.

If you need topic ideas for other essay genres, consult our guide on narrative essay topics .

How to Write a Descriptive Essay in 8 Steps

Now that you understand the essence and purpose of this type of essay let's explore some fundamental yet valuable tips for writing a descriptive essay. 

How to Write a Descriptive Essay in 8 Steps

Step 1: Select Your Topic

The first step in creating a captivating descriptive essay is choosing the right topic. Start by paying close attention to your surroundings. 

  • Consider describing a person you know well in your life, like a sibling, a close friend, or a teacher who has made a significant impact on you.
  • Alternatively, you could focus on a specific place or object that holds sentimental value to you, such as a favorite vacation spot, a cherished childhood toy, or a meaningful piece of jewelry.
  • Another option is to explore a strong emotion that you have experienced, like excitement, nostalgia, or determination. 

Avoid using overly technical or jargon-filled language in your topic selection. Instead, aim for simplicity and clarity to ensure that your chosen topic resonates with your audience and allows you to convey your unique perspective effectively.

Step 2: Gather Details

Once you've selected your topic for your descriptive essay, the next step is to gather details that will bring your chosen subject to life on the page. Start by closely observing your subject, whether it's a person, place, object, or emotion. Pay attention to its appearance, characteristics, and any unique features that stand out to you.

For example, if you've chosen to describe your childhood home, take note of its architectural style, color scheme, and any distinctive elements like a front porch or a cozy fireplace. Recall memories associated with the home, such as family gatherings or quiet moments spent reading in your favorite spot.

If your topic is a person, like a close friend or family member, observe their physical appearance, mannerisms, and personality traits. Consider the ways in which they interact with others and the impact they have on your life.

Step 3: Draft an Outline

When structuring your essay, you can organize your paragraphs from top to bottom or near to far, chronologically, or from general to specific. Here's a simple descriptive essay outline from our custom writers to guide you: 

Step 4: Develop a Thesis Statement

When developing your thesis statement, consider the main points or aspects of your subject that you want to highlight in your essay. Think about the emotions or impressions you want to evoke in the reader and tailor your thesis statement accordingly.

For example, if you're writing about your favorite childhood memory, your thesis statement could be: 'My summers spent at my grandparents' farm were filled with laughter, adventure, and a sense of belonging.'

Or, if you're describing a beautiful sunset, your thesis statement might be: 'The breathtaking colors and serene atmosphere of the sunset over the ocean evoke a sense of peace and wonder.'

Step 5: Craft the Introduction

Start your descriptive essay introduction by hooking the reader with an engaging opening sentence or anecdote related to your topic. This could be a vivid description, a thought-provoking question, or a surprising fact. For example:

  • Growing up on my grandparents' farm, each summer brought new adventures and unforgettable memories that still warm my heart to this day.

After hooking the reader, provide some background information or context for your topic. This could include brief details about the setting, time period, or significance of your subject. For instance:

  • Nestled in the rolling hills of the countryside, my grandparents' farm was a sanctuary of simple pleasures and cherished traditions.

Finally, end your introduction with your thesis statement, clearly stating the main point of your essay. This ties everything together and gives the reader a roadmap for what to expect in the rest of your essay. 

Step 6: Compose the Body Paragraphs

Once you've crafted your introduction, it's time to compose the body paragraphs, where you delve into the details and descriptions that bring your topic to life.

Each body paragraph should focus on a specific aspect or detail of your topic, expanding upon the ideas presented in your thesis statement. Use vivid language, sensory details, and descriptive devices to paint a clear picture for the reader.

For example, if you're writing about summers spent at your grandparents' farm, you could dedicate one body paragraph to describing the sights and sounds of the farm:

  • The rolling fields stretched out before me, golden waves of wheat swaying gently in the breeze. The air was filled with the sweet scent of wildflowers, mingling with the earthy aroma of freshly turned soil.

In another body paragraph, you might explore the adventures and activities that filled your days:

  • From sunrise to sunset, there was never a dull moment on the farm. Whether we were exploring the woods, splashing in the creek, or helping with chores, each day brought new excitement and adventure.

Continue with additional body paragraphs, each focusing on a different aspect of your topic and providing rich, detailed descriptions. Be sure to vary your language and sentence structure to keep the reader engaged and interested.

Step 7: Conclude the Essay

The conclusion should bring together all the ideas presented in your essay. Avoid introducing any new information in the conclusion. Instead, focus on evaluating your thoughts and reflections on the topic. End with a strong final sentence that leaves a lasting impression on the reader.

For example, if you were writing about summers spent at your grandparents' farm, your conclusion might reflect on the significance of those memories:

  • 'As I reminisce about the summers spent amid the rustic charm of my grandparents' farm, I am filled with a profound sense of gratitude for the simple pleasures and cherished moments that shaped my childhood. The laughter echoing through the fields, the adventures awaiting around every corner, and the sense of belonging that enveloped me there will forever hold a special place in my heart.'

Step 8: Refine Your Essay

Once you've finished writing your essay, it's time to refine it for clarity and impact. Start by reading your essay aloud to yourself. Listen for any sentences that sound awkward or unclear. Mark these sentences so you can revise them later.

You can also read your essay aloud to others and ask for their feedback. Invite friends, family members, teachers, or mentors to listen to your essay and share their thoughts. Ask them if there are any parts that are difficult to understand or if they have trouble picturing the subject you're describing.

Be receptive to constructive criticism and feedback. Use it as an opportunity to improve your essay and make it stronger. And if it sounds too demanding right now, you can buy cheap essay to sidestep the hassle and reclaim some much-needed free time.

Descriptive Essay Format

The standard format for a descriptive essay typically includes five paragraphs: an introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion. However, you can also organize your essay into sections, allowing for flexibility in the length of the body paragraphs.

Introductory Paragraph: This paragraph sets the scene by describing where, when, and to whom the experience occurred. It should include descriptive words to capture the reader's attention.

First Body Paragraph: Here, the writer provides details that allow the reader to visualize the situation. Descriptive language is key in painting a clear picture for the reader.

Second Body Paragraph: More details are provided, with a focus on using descriptive adjectives. Figurative language, such as metaphor (e.g., describing the city as a 'jungle of concrete'), can enhance the imagery.

Third Body Paragraph: The writer continues to appeal to the reader's senses with visually descriptive words. Figurative language, like personification (e.g., describing the wind as a playful dancer), adds depth to the description.

Conclusion: The conclusion alludes to another sense, such as touch or sound, and uses strong words to signify closure. It ends with a powerful concluding sentence to leave a lasting impression on the reader.

Descriptive Essay Examples

In this section, you'll discover essay examples that demonstrate how to captivate your readers' attention effectively. After exploring these examples, you might find yourself tempted to ask, 'Can someone do my homework for me?' - and that's completely understandable! We're here to help you become more confident and articulate communicators through your writing!

3 Additional Tips for Writing

While writing a descriptive essay, your goal is to make your subject come alive for the reader. Unlike more formal essays, you have the freedom to be creative with your descriptions, using figurative language, sensory details, and precise word choices to make your writing memorable.

3 Additional Tips for Writing

Use Figurative Language: Figurative language, like metaphors and similes, adds flair to your descriptions. Instead of sticking to literal descriptions, use comparisons to create unique and memorable imagery. 

  • For instance, describing a city as a bustling beehive of activity ' or a forest as ' a blanket of whispers ' adds an unexpected twist that captures the reader's attention.

Engage Your Senses: In a descriptive essay, don't just focus on what something looks like; appeal to all the senses. Describe how things smell, sound, feel, and even taste, if applicable. This adds depth and richness to your descriptions, making them more immersive. 

  • For example, instead of just describing a beach visually, include sensory details like feeling the warm sand between your toes , hearing the rhythmic crash of waves , and t asting the salty sea breeze.

Choose Your Words Carefully: Use effective adjectives, verbs, and nouns to convey your impressions vividly. Avoid clichés and opt for original, precise language that reflects your unique perspective. Take the time to review your sentences and consider if there are better word choices that could enhance your description.

In Wrapping Up

To sum it up, descriptive essays are all about encouraging students like you to explore your surroundings and unleash your creativity by describing scenes in detail with words. When you carefully select and organize these descriptive details, it not only enhances your writing but also sharpens your critical thinking skills. Plus, diving into this expressive writing style allows you to appreciate the beauty of language and feel more connected to written communication. And remember, if you ever need a little boost in your writing journey, our descriptive essay writing service is here to help!

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Let one of our essay writers do it for you, all you have to do is send us your paper requirements and wait for your original paper to be written.

How To Write A Descriptive Essay?

What is a descriptive essay, what is the purpose of a descriptive essay.

Daniel Parker

Daniel Parker

is a seasoned educational writer focusing on scholarship guidance, research papers, and various forms of academic essays including reflective and narrative essays. His expertise also extends to detailed case studies. A scholar with a background in English Literature and Education, Daniel’s work on EssayPro blog aims to support students in achieving academic excellence and securing scholarships. His hobbies include reading classic literature and participating in academic forums.

example of a descriptive essay outline

is an expert in nursing and healthcare, with a strong background in history, law, and literature. Holding advanced degrees in nursing and public health, his analytical approach and comprehensive knowledge help students navigate complex topics. On EssayPro blog, Adam provides insightful articles on everything from historical analysis to the intricacies of healthcare policies. In his downtime, he enjoys historical documentaries and volunteering at local clinics.

  • New samples
  • New information on each of the rest sections 

Axelrod, R. B. and Cooper, R. C. (2008). The st martin’s guide to writing. (English Edition). New York: Bedford/St Martins

Okono, U. M. (2021). Descriptive essay: An assessment of performance by undergraduates of AkwaIbom State University. Erudite Journal of Linguistics and Languages . https://www.globalacademicstar.com/download/article/descriptive-essay-an-assessment-of-performance-by-undergraduates-of-akwa-ibom-state-university.pdf

Okono. U. M. (2020). “Qualities of a good essay: An assessment of the writings of Nigerian undergraduates.” International Journal on integrated Education. 3: vi.

https://irsc-asc.weebly.com/uploads/3/1/8/1/31813909/e7__descriptive_essay_guidelines.pdf

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What is a Descriptive Essay? How to Write It (with Examples)

What is a Descriptive Essay? How to Write It (with Examples)

A descriptive essay is a type of creative writing that uses specific language to depict a person, object, experience, or event. The idea is to use illustrative language to show readers what the writer wants to convey – it could be as simple as a peaceful view from the top of a hill or as horrific as living in a war zone. By using descriptive language, authors can evoke a mental image in the readers’ minds, engaging readers and leaving a lasting impression, instead of just providing a play-by-play narrative.

Note that a description and descriptive essay are not the same thing. A descriptive essay typically consists of five or more well-written paragraphs with vivid imagery that can help readers visualize the content, as opposed to a description, which is typically one or more plain paragraphs with no particular structure or appeal. If you are still unsure about how to write a compelling descriptive essay, continue reading!

Table of Contents

What is a descriptive essay, types of descriptive essay topics.

  • Characteristics of descriptive essays

How to write a descriptive essay using a structured outline

Frequently asked questions.

A simple descriptive essay definition is that it is a piece of writing that gives a thorough and vivid description of an object, person, experience, or situation. It is sometimes focused more on the emotional aspect of the topic rather than the specifics. The author’s intention when writing a descriptive essay is to help readers visualize the subject at hand. Generally, students are asked to write a descriptive essay to test their ability to recreate a rich experience with artistic flair. Here are a few key points to consider when you begin writing these.

  • Look for a fascinating subject

You might be assigned a topic for your descriptive essay, but if not, you must think of a subject that interests you and about which you know enough facts. It might be about an emotion, place, event, or situation that you might have experienced.

example of a descriptive essay outline

  • Acquire specific details about the topic

The next task is to collect relevant information about the topic of your choice. You should focus on including details that make the descriptive essay stand out and have a long-lasting impression on the readers. To put it simply, your aim is to make the reader feel as though they were a part of the experience in the first place, rather than merely describing the subject.

  • Be playful with your writing

To make the descriptive essay memorable, use figurative writing and imagery to lay emphasis on the specific aspect of the topic. The goal is to make sure that the reader experiences the content visually, so it must be captivating and colorful. Generally speaking, “don’t tell, show”! This can be accomplished by choosing phrases that evoke strong emotions and engage a variety of senses. Making use of metaphors and similes will enable you to compare different things. We will learn about them in the upcoming sections.

  • Capture all the different senses

Unlike other academic articles, descriptive essay writing uses sensory elements in addition to the main idea. In this type of essay writing, the topic is described by using sensory details such as smell, taste, feel, and touch. Example “ Mahira feels most at home when the lavender scent fills her senses as she lays on her bed after a long, tiring day at work . As the candle melts , so do her worries” . It is crucial to provide sensory details to make the character more nuanced and build intrigue to keep the reader hooked. Metaphors can also be employed to explain abstract concepts; for instance, “ A small act of kindness creates ripples that transcend oceans .” Here the writer used a metaphor to convey the emotion that even the smallest act of kindness can have a larger impact.

  • Maintain harmony between flavor and flow

The descriptive essay format is one that can be customized according to the topic. However, like other types of essays, it must have an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion. The number of body paragraphs can vary depending on the topic and available information.

It is crucial to remember that a descriptive essay should have a specific topic and goal, such as sharing personal experiences or expressing emotions like the satisfaction of a good meal. This is accomplished by employing exact language, imagery, and figurative language to illustrate concrete features. These language devices allow the writer to craft a descriptive essay that effectively transmits a particular mood, feeling, or incident to readers while also conjuring up strong mental imagery. A descriptive essay may be creative, or it may be based on the author’s own experiences. Below is a description of a few descriptive essay examples that fit into these categories.

  • Personal descriptive essay example

A personal essay can look like a descriptive account of your favorite activity, a place in your neighborhood, or an object that you value. Example: “ As I step out of the front door, the crisp morning air greets me with a gentle embrace; the big chestnut tree in front, sways in the wind as if saying hello to me. The world unfolds in a symphony of awakening colors, promising a day filled with untold possibilities that make me feel alive and grateful to be born again”.

  • Imaginative descriptive essay example

You may occasionally be required to write descriptive essays based on your imagination or on subjects unrelated to your own experiences. The prompts for these kinds of creative essays could be to describe the experience of someone going through heartbreak or to write about a day in the life of a barista. Imaginative descriptive essays also allow you to describe different emotions. Example, the feelings a parent experiences on holding their child for the first time.

Characteristics of descriptive essay s

The aim of a descriptive essay is to provide a detailed and vivid description of a person, place, object, event, or experience. The main goal is to create a sensory experience for the reader. Through a descriptive essay, the reader may be able to experience foods, locations, activities, or feelings that they might not otherwise be able to. Additionally, it gives the writer a way to relate to the readers by sharing a personal story. The following is a list of the essential elements of a descriptive essay:

  • Sensory details
  • Clear, succinct language
  • Organized structure
  • Thesis statement
  • Appeal to emotion

example of a descriptive essay outline

How to write a descriptive essay, with examples

Writing an engaging descriptive essay is all about bringing the subject matter to life for the reader so they can experience it with their senses—smells, tastes, and textures. The upside of writing a descriptive essay is you don’t have to stick to the confinements of formal essay writing, rather you are free to use a figurative language, with sensory details, and clever word choices that can breathe life to your descriptive essay. Let’s take a closer look at how you can use these components to develop a descriptive essay that will stand out, using examples.

  • Figurative language

Have you ever heard the expression “shooting for the stars”? It refers to pushing someone to strive higher or establish lofty goals, but it does not actually mean shooting for the stars. This is an example of using figurative language for conveying strong motivational emotions. In a descriptive essay, figurative language is employed to grab attention and emphasize points by creatively drawing comparisons and exaggerations. But why should descriptive essays use metaphorical language? One it adds to the topic’s interest and humor; two, it facilitates the reader’s increased connection to the subject.

These are the five most often used figurative language techniques: personification, metaphor, simile, hyperbole, and allusion.

  • Simile: A simile is a figure of speech that is used to compare two things while emphasizing and enhancing the description using terms such as “like or as.”

Example: Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving – Albert Einstein

  • Metaphor: A metaphor are also used to draw similarities, but without using direct or literal comparisons like done in similes.   

Example: Books are the mirrors of the soul – Virginia Woolf, Between the acts

  • Personification: This is the process of giving nonhuman or abstract objects human traits. Any human quality, including an emotional component, a physical attribute, or an action, can be personified.

Example: Science knows no country, because knowledge belongs to humanity, and is the torch which illuminates the world – Louis Pasteur

  • Hyperbole: This is an extreme form of exaggeration, frequently impractical, and usually employed to emphasize a point or idea. It gives the character more nuance and complexity.

Example: The force will be with you, always – Star Wars

  • Allusion: This is when you reference a person, work, or event without specifically mentioning them; this leaves room for the reader’s creativity.  

Example: In the text below, Robert Frost uses the biblical Garden of Eden as an example to highlight the idea that nothing, not even paradise, endures forever.

Then leaf subsides to leaf.

So Eden sank to grief,

So dawn goes down to day.

Nothing gold can stay

– Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost (1923)

Descriptive essays need a combination of figurative language and strong sensory details to make the essay more memorable. This is when authors describe the subject matter employing senses like smell, sound, touch, and taste so that the reader can relate to it better.

Example of a sensory-based descriptive essay: The earthy fragrance of freshly roasted chestnuts and the sight of bright pink, red, orange fallen leaves on the street reminded her that winter was around the corner.

  • Word choice

Word choice is everything in a descriptive essay. For the description to be enchanting, it is essential to utilize the right adjectives and to carefully consider the verbs, nouns, and adverbs. Use unusual terms and phrases that offer a new viewpoint on your topic matter instead of overusing clichés like “fast as the wind” or “lost track of time,” which can make your descriptive essay seem uninteresting and unoriginal.

See the following examples:

Bad word choice: I was so happy because the sunset was really cool.

Good word choice: I experienced immense joy as the sunset captivated me with its remarkable colors and breathtaking beauty.

  • Descriptive essay format and outline

Descriptive essay writing does not have to be disorganized, it is advisable to use a structured format to organize your thoughts and ensure coherent flow in your writing. Here is a list of components that should be a part of your descriptive essay outline:

  • Introduction
  • Opening/hook sentence
  • Topic sentence
  • Body paragraphs
  • Concrete details
  • Clincher statement

example of a descriptive essay outline

Introduction:

  • Hook: An opening statement that captures attention while introducing the subject.
  • Background: Includes a brief overview of the topic the descriptive essay is based on.
  • Thesis statement: Clearly states the main point or purpose of the descriptive essay.

Body paragraphs: Each paragraph should have

  • Topic sentence: Introduce the first aspect or feature you will describe. It informs the reader about what is coming next.
  • Sensory details: Use emphatic language to appeal to the reader’s senses (sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell).
  • Concrete details: These are actual details needed to understand the context of the descriptive essay.
  • Supporting details: Include relevant information or examples to improve the description.

Conclusion:

  • Summarize key points: Here you revisit the main features or aspects of the subject.
  • Restate thesis statement: Reinforce the central impression or emotion.
  • Clincher statement: Conclude with a statement that summarizes the entire essay and serve as the last words with a powerful message.

Revision and editing:

  • Go over your essay to make sure it is coherent, clear, and consistent.
  • Check for logical paragraph transitions by proofreading the content.
  • Examine text to ensure correct grammar, punctuation, and style.
  • Use the thesaurus or AI paraphrasing tools to find the right words.

A descriptive essay often consists of three body paragraphs or more, an introduction that concludes with a thesis statement, and a conclusion that summarizes the subject and leaves a lasting impression on readers.

A descriptive essay’s primary goal is to captivate the reader by writing a thorough and vivid explanation of the subject matter, while appealing to their various senses. A list of additional goals is as follows: – Spark feeling and imagination – Create a vivid experience – Paint a mental picture – Pique curiosity – Convey a mood or atmosphere – Highlight specific details

Although they both fall within the creative writing category, narrative essays and descriptive essays have different storytelling focuses. While the main goal of a narrative essay is to tell a story based on a real-life experience or a made-up event, the main goal of a descriptive essay is to vividly describe a person, location, event, or emotion.

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How to Write a Descriptive Essay

How to Write a Descriptive Essay

example of a descriptive essay outline

This could be something as simple as your favorite flavor of ice cream or as complicated as the politics of 13th century Vienna. Different than a simple description, a descriptive essay allows the writer to really show off both their imagination as well as their writing skills.

What is a Descriptive Essay?

A descriptive essay is a type of academic writing that asks the writer to fully describe a place, person, situation, event, or thing. They can be simple or they can be very complex depending on the subject matter and audience written for. These types of essays train a writer’s ability to express themselves accurately as well as build compelling sentences and arguments.

Descriptive Essay Ideas

There is no exhaustive list of things that can be described, but these are some of the most common things you may be asked to write about. 

A Location - The goal of writing about a place is to make the reader feel as if they are there. Words, similes, and metaphors that ignite the reader’s imagination are essential. Try and immerse the reader in the sights, smells, and sounds of the place you are describing. Examples could be a city, a view, a particular building like your house, etc. 

A Time Period - Similar to writing about a location, the goal is to make the reader lose themselves in the time you are describing. This requires great research to be able to describe physical characteristics as authentically and as well as possible. This could include how you felt a year ago, an ancient time period, or the future.

An Event - The goal of describing an event is to explain a series of interesting circumstances. Typical storytelling elements like describing the plot, setting, and characters are useful, but make sure you focus on the chain of events.

An Emotion - The goal of describing an emotion is to make the reader feel the sentiments of the character you are describing. Metaphors and similes are very useful when trying to evoke an emotion in a reader along with physical descriptions that express the emotion. 

A Person - The goal of writing about a person is to make the reader understand something about that person. This includes physical descriptions of what they look like, what kind of clothing they wear, a sense of the physical presence along with their profession,  as well as how they behave. 

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Descriptive Essay Outline and Structure

Though a descriptive type of essay is quite different from a typical academic paper, it still follows a classic 5 paragraph format. Always follow any directions though, sometimes you may need more or fewer body paragraphs. This is a general structure you should keep in mind for this type of essay.

Introduction

  • Introduction/background information

Body Paragraphs

  • Topic Sentence
  • Sensory Information
  • Physical Descriptions
  • Transition Sentence
  • Summary of the main points
  • Restate the thesis

An outline is always a good idea for any kind of writing, but it is particularly useful for this type of essay because it collects your thoughts and makes sure your essay stays on track. 

Introduction 
  • Hook - The sting of salty water, the hypnotic crash of the waves, the breathtaking sunsets, the best vacation spot?
  • Background information - Everyone is different and everyone likes different types of things. When it comes to vacations though, there is a place that almost everyone enjoys.
  • Thesis - In my opinion, the beach is the best possible vacation spot because of the variety of ways one can enjoy it. 
Body Paragraph 1 
  • Topic Sentence - The beach has many kinds of natural beauty
  • Sensory information - The unlimited expanse of the ocean combined with glorious sunrises and sunsets.
  • Physical descriptions -The crunch of sand below your bare feet and the crash of waves on your body.
  • Transition sentence - There’s more than just natural beauty though, there are physical activities to enjoy as well 
Body Paragraph 2
  • Topic Sentence - The beach has unlimited activities for physical enjoyment.
  • Sensory information - The thrill of battling with the ocean, the joy of falling on the sand, the wind streaming through your hair, and the pleasant tingling of the sun on bare skin.
  • Physical descriptions - Water sports like surfing, jet skiing, and the like allow you to exercise in one of the most fun ways possible. Not to mention sports like frisbee, volleyball, beach soccer, and more.
  • Transition sentence - If you just want to relax, the beach is perfect for that too!
Body Paragraph 3
  • Topic Sentence - The beach is ideal just to relax, destress, and take it easy. 
  • Sensory information - To relax as you are massaged by either human hands or the sun is a pleasure. Lazing around might be frowned upon, but the beach is the ideal place to spend some time taking care of yourself and letting the stresses of the world melt away.
  • Physical description - Whether it’s reading a book, or enjoying a refreshing beverage with umbrellas in it, you can get taken care of on the beach. Building sandcastles, painting, and meditating are other activities easily and freely enjoyed. 
  • Transition sentence - The beach has so much to offer.
  • Summary of the main points - Whether it’s nature, physical exercise, or simple relaxation, the beach can offer all of that and more. 
  • Restate the thesis - That’s the main reason that a beach is the ideal vacation spot, it allows for diverse ways of having fun. 
  • Closing statement/Clincher - Think about the last time you went to the beach, don’t you want to go again?

What is the Purpose of a Descriptive Essay?

It should leave the reader with a clear idea of the topic of the essay. The goal is to explain things in a comprehensive and interesting way so that the information stays with the reader. Let’s go into the details of how to accomplish this. 

Did you like our inspiring Descriptive Essay Guide?

For more help, tap into our pool of professional writers and get expert essay editing services!

Writing Process & Descriptive Essay Examples

It may seem challenging to write a successful essay of this type, but if you follow the advice below, it will be a breeze. 

How to Start a Descriptive Essay

Making sure you choose the right topic is the first hurdle to cross. A topic for a descriptive essay is vital because it is the main subject you will be writing about. Spend at least 20 minutes brainstorming different topic ideas and make sure you choose a topic that you know well.

Next, create an outline to better structure your thoughts and figure out the pieces of information you need to find out more about. The more time you spend creating a well-researched outline, the better your endpaper is going to be, and you’ll end up spending less time on actually writing the paper. Now you can move on the writing the descriptive essay introduction.

How to Write a Descriptive Essay Thesis

A thesis statement is the main argument you are trying to make in your paper. It is the main point you are trying to describe. A good thesis statement for descriptive essay is particular without being too brief. It should include not only just what the topic is, but also mention why the topic is important.

How to Write Body Paragraphs

You can have as many body paragraphs as you think are necessary to achieve the goal of describing something clearly. This means you could have just one body paragraph, the standard three, or more. 

Start every paragraph with a topic sentence that explains what the main purpose of the paragraph is. Next fill in sensory details, describing the emotions before moving on to describing the actual physical details. End each body paragraph with a transition sentence that helps each paragraph flow into the other. Not only does this make your writing stronger, but it also helps you create an immersive experience.

How to Write the Conclusion 

Summarize the main points of your essay and make sure that you reiterate the thesis statement. This reminds people of the point of your essay and ensures that when writing, you don’t stray too far from the point. 

Descriptive Essay Format 

There are 3 main formats of citation types for essays. Though the most common one is MLA, it is possible that you may have to use APA or Chicago Style citations. 

MLA stands for Modern Language Association and is used primarily for the arts and humanities.  MLA uses in-text parenthetical citation in the format of (Author, Page). The page at the end that contains all the sources is called the Works Cited page. The format of these entries is unique to MLA but is easy to make with a citation generator. 

APA stands for American Psychological Association and is used mostly for the sciences and social sciences. APA uses in-text parenthetical citations in the format (Author, Date). The page at the end that contains all the sources is called the References section

Chicago Style is used primarily for Business, History, and the Fine Arts. In-text citation can be either as footnotes or parenthetical citation in the format (Author, Date). The page at the end that contains all the sources is called the Bibliography. 

Most descriptive essays will follow the MLA style of citation, but if you need any more help, find a guide on Studyfy.com for more information about citation styles in general. 

Descriptive Essay Topics

The topic is crucial, because all the research you do, and the entire paper, will specifically be about describing the topic. Here are some descriptive essay prompts to inspire you!

The person you’ve most admired in your life
A movie scene that made you feel strong emotions
The time period you would travel to if you had a time machine
Why a beach is better than the mountains for a vacation (or vice versa)
The taste of a drink when you are incredibly tired
An author that inspired you 
Your favorite cuisine
The best place in the world to be by yourself
The best Christmas morning you’ve ever had
An accent that you really enjoy 
A time when you wanted something so much it burned
Describe the day in the life of your favorite celebrity 
The joy of escaping into a video game
What dancing means to you 
A life philosophy you believe in 
The feeling of holding a baby in our arms
The sound of crashing waves
Standing in front of a gorgeous view
A vacation that was meaningful 
Why fireworks are magical 
The first time you cosplayed 
How it feels to listen to music that you hate 
The best thing you have ever eaten in your life
What would it be like to live 100 years in the future
Why hearing people laugh is beautiful 
A day in the life of your favorite animal 
A strange superstition you believe in
The strangest person you’ve ever met
Your favorite tv show 
Playing your favorite sport 
What it’s like to be in love

Descriptive Essay Tips

Before we end, let’s go over some of the key points of information in this article.

  • Use figurative language including metaphors and similes 
  • Use your senses
  • Choose appropriate words
  • Show don't tell 
  • Focus on specific details
  • Spend time choosing the right topic
  • Create a detailed outline
  • Forget about the purpose of the essay
  • Submit your first draft
  • Make it too complicated
  • Ignore your audience 
  • Ignore any directions

In addition to the information provided in this article, there are various resources available to help with your writing needs. If you are struggling to write your descriptive essay, you can turn to professional writers and editors for assistance. You may consider hiring a research paper writing service or seeking help from dissertation writers .

Additionally, if you need someone to " write my admission essay ", there are various options available. You can hire a writer for a custom writing service or seek help from online tutors and teachers. Furthermore, if you need to write a strong admission essay, there are services available that specialize in providing guidance and assistance with this type of writing.

It is important to note that before submitting any work, it should be proofread and edited thoroughly to ensure its quality. Studyfy offers a range of services to help with this, including professional proofreaders and editors who can check your work for grammatical errors and ensure that it meets academic standards.

In summary, there are various resources available to help with your writing needs, including professional writing services, proofreaders, and editors. By utilizing these resources and following the guidelines outlined in this article, you can write a successful descriptive essay that effectively conveys your ideas and engages your readers.If you are looking for the query " I need someone to write an essay for me ", Studyfy has got you covered

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How To Write A Descriptive Essay?

26 April, 2020

11 minutes read

Author:  Tomas White

Descriptive essay is one of the hardest forms of writing. To master descriptive writing, you must be creative and craft a scene that all readers can picture with words alone. This freedom and creativity can make it one of the most rewarding and fun essays to write. It is the backbone of all artful writing like poetry, novels, and even television scripts. We prepared this guide for You to learn all you need to know about descriptive writing. Let's start!

Descriptive Essay

What is a Descriptive Essay?

The goal of a descriptive essay is simple, choose a subject and describe it. The subject could be anything:

The subject of the essay

A descriptive essay is all about describing the subject in great detail. Being a type of expository writing , it gives you great freedom to paint a picture with your words, shares a once in a lifetime event with the reader or makes them feel something.  It is better to choose a descriptive essay topic that has lots of qualities to discuss for example a person might have a more interesting feature to describe than a paper towel. Choose a subject you connect with emotionally or have a personal history with. The best descriptions come from retelling an experience.

The Difference Between Descriptive and Narrative Essays

The main difference between descriptive and narrative essays lies in the structure and purpose of the essay. A descriptive essay is used to describe a subject to present a clear picture of it. As such, it only requires you to describe the item in a logic fashion. A narrative essay’s purpose is to tell a story. As such, it requires a plot and logical progression to an outcome. A person’s face can be the subject of a descriptive essay. But it would be hard to write a narrative piece that follows the person’s face as the central plot of a story.

Showing VS Telling

Show details while describing

A descriptive essay values details over facts. This is also known as showing vs. telling. To  show  something is to describe using the five senses, how it looks, how it smells, how it tastes, how it feels and how it sounds. Imagine the reader as an alien, who has never experienced the subject for themselves. How would you describe it then?

To give you an understanding of how to differentiate between showing and telling I’ll write an example of a descriptive paper that describes my favorite place.

Description sample

The above example tells you, as it doesn’t evoke any of your senses. It is a senseless description . It’s vague and hard to imagine.

Good example of a Descriptive Essay

This description is more detail and easier to imagine because of the following changes:

  • The choice of words like ‘haven’ instead of ‘like’ add a showing element as it is showing in what way I like the library.
  • Putting describers before items like ‘brightly colored’ books makes it easier to see.
  • And choosing words with more like ‘towering’ instead of ‘tall’ makes the description less full.
  • The description of the books shows what they do, not what they are. These are important points to consider when writing a descriptive essay.

A good exercise for descriptive writing and is to read descriptive essay examples and pick out the words that do the four points outlined above. Analyzing other’s descriptive writing will make your own descriptive work stronger. Can you pick out another place in the descriptive essay example above where those four changes occur and what it lends to the description?

Still having problems with your descriptive paper? All you need is to request help from our top-notch essay writing service and our essay writer make it for you !

How to Choose a Descriptive Essay Topic?

When deciding what to highlight about your topic, take a step back and look at what draws you to it. A campfire has bright, flickering colors, a satisfying crackling sound, and a sort of flow as it moves from the bottom to the tip of the flame. Place yourself in proximity to the subject and describe the parts that stimulate your senses the most.

Title Examples of Descriptive Essays

Here are some examples of descriptive essay topics that are fun to write:

Topics for a Descriptive Essay

Pick something you can see right now and think about how you’d describe that.

Related Posts: Argumentative essay topics | Compare&Contrast essay topics

How to Set Up a Proper Description?

Slow down and think about what you want to invoke. Don’t rush into a description or you’ll likely end up with something weaker than you could have. Take your topic aside and write some sentences describing how it charms each sense – the five senses being:

Keep a thesaurus on hand to switch some of the more basic words out. If you can read your paragraph back and vividly imagine the item you’ve described, you’ve done it.

How to write a Descriptive Essay Outline

The plan of writing

Starting your descriptive essay without a plan can lead to a messy and sprawling description.  Learning to outline your ideas is just as important as knowing how to write them.

Related Posts: How to write an Essay outline  | How to write an Essay introduction  

 Creating an Introduction for a Descriptive Writing

Once you have chosen the subject to write you need to plan the introduction for your descriptive paper. An introduction needs to include a thesis statement and three features of the thing you are describing.   The introduction should start with a thesis statement that states how you feel about your topic. This should then be supported with three qualities defining those feelings.

Examples of a thesis statement

These thesis statements aren’t meant to be complex. All they’re meant to do is to set up your reader for your descriptions. It is important to include three reasons that you can expand on describe in great detail as they will form the paragraphs of your descriptive paper.

Planning and Writing the Body of a Descriptive Essay

Looking at your thesis statement, take those three reasons and break them down into their own paragraphs. Describe hanging out with your friends at the beach, talk about the food you’d eat, the activities you’d participate in. Detail what huskies do when they’re energetic, what shows that they get along with other dogs?

It helps to write about each way you can describe an item on a separate sheet of paper. Use that sheet as your descriptive essay outline. Take each item and write what sense you can use to describe the item in each paragraph.

For example, if you want to talk about eating a popsicle on the beach you could include how cold against your tongue for touch, that it smelt and tasted like raspberries, it was a bright red, and shaped like a rocket for sight, and the sound you made it as you bit on it, or the sound you made as it rocketed into your mouth. Expand this into a paragraph keeping the most vivid description.

Force your reader to imagine objects

Force your reader to imagine these objects in their head. Help them visualize it, pour your vision into the paper and focus on both the small and the big details. Just don’t go overboard. It’s important to have a few great descriptors rather than a ton of average ones.

When describing an object, go about it in a practical sense. Don’t just throw details on the page, talk about them in order. Describe a mountain from its peak to it’s middle all the way down to its base. You wouldn’t go from the middle to the base to the peak, would you? This way, you’re keeping your reader engaged with the topic.

Concluding a Descriptive Essay

Concluding descriptive writing is easy. All you have to show why the subject you described is important to you. All you have to do is show the reader what you implied. Show why it has meaning, and why they should care.

Descriptive Essay Example

Drafting your essay.

Make sure that your essay responds to these questions

Where the organization comes to fruition. When writing your essay, keep the reader in your head at all times. Constantly as yourself: “Is this vivid enough?” Don’t focus much on grammar, get the content onto the paper.

Questions to Ask Yourself

Once you’ve finished writing your essay, read it back and make sure it responds positively to each of these questions:

  • Are these descriptions making my writing visual? Could I make them more vivid?
  • Have I used these descriptions to detail my emotions to the reader?
  • Do these descriptions convey each of the five senses?
  • Have I gone into enough details in each paragraph?
  • Are my descriptions in an orderly fashion?

If you believe your essay fits these criteria, then you’re good to go on the content side.

Perfecting the Essay

Double check your essay

Read it through a couple more times. Take some time away from it and then come back with a fresh mindset.  Correct any grammar issues you see, and double check that it answers all of the questions mentioned above. Once that’s done, you’ll have an essay worthy of an A+ grade.

From Our Writers: Tips on How to Write a Good Descriptive Essay

  • Be sensitive. Some writers are scared to show their true selves, but the point of a descriptive essay is to talk about how an object affects your senses and emotions. Keep this in mind during all stages of the essay.
  • Put effort into unique descriptions. Don’t settle for standard words, spend some time searching out alternatives to common descriptive words. It will only help the reader envision your thoughts.
  • Write about something that you care about. If you choose something you don’t have much personal experience with, you can’t truly write from the heart.

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Art Research Paper Topics

Art Research Paper Topics

Students obtaining degrees in fine art and art & design programs most commonly need to write a paper on art topics. However, this subject is becoming more popular in educational institutions for expanding students’ horizons. Thus, both groups of receivers of education: those who are into arts and those who only get acquainted with art […]

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Descriptive Essay Outline

Descriptive Essay Writing | Outline and Example

The essence of a descriptive essay lies in creating a vivid and sensory experience for the reader. This essay is a type of essay that aims to provide a detailed and vivid description of a person, place, object, event, or experience. The primary goal is to paint a clear and engaging picture in the reader’s mind using sensory details such as sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell.  

Descriptive Essay Illustration

Definition and Purpose | Descriptive Essay

A descriptive essay is a genre of writing that immerses the reader in a rich tapestry of sensory details. It goes beyond the mere conveyance of information, aiming to evoke emotions, elicit vivid images, and transport the reader to the heart of the depicted scene. The primary purpose is not just to tell a story but to make the reader feel as if they are a part of it.

See Argumentative Essay on Climate Change here.

Sensory Details: The Heartbeat of Descriptive Essay Writing

At the core of any compelling descriptive essay lies the skillful use of sensory details. Engaging the reader’s senses—sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell—is the key to making the narrative come alive. Consider this excerpt: The sun dipped below the horizon, casting a warm, golden glow over the tranquil meadow. The gentle rustle of leaves whispered through the air, accompanied by the melodic chirping of crickets. The scent of blooming wildflowers enveloped the surroundings, creating a symphony of nature that danced upon the skin. By incorporating vivid sensory details, the writer transforms a simple scene into an immersive experience, enabling the reader to not just see but also feel the ambiance.

Selecting the Right Subject | Descriptive Essay

The foundation of a successful descriptive essay lies in choosing a subject that captivates both the writer and the reader. Whether it’s a serene landscape, a bustling city street, or a cherished childhood memory, the chosen subject should have the potential to evoke a myriad of emotions and sensations.  

Creating a Vivid Impression with Imagery | Descriptive Essay

Imagery is the backbone of descriptive writing. It involves the use of vivid and evocative language to paint a mental picture for the reader. Instead of merely stating facts, employ adjectives and adverbs that resonate with the emotions you aim to convey. For instance: The ancient, gnarled oak stood sentinel at the edge of the mist-covered lake, its branches reaching out like the arms of an old friend, welcoming you home.

Organizing Thoughts: The Power of Structure

A well-organized descriptive essay follows a coherent structure that guides the reader through the narrative. Start with a compelling introduction that sets the tone and introduces the subject. Arrange the body paragraphs logically, moving from one detail to another in a seamless flow. Finally, conclude by leaving a lasting impression on the reader’s mind.

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Show, Don’t Tell: The Golden Rule

In descriptive writing, the age-old adage “show, don’t tell” takes center stage. Instead of explicitly stating emotions or characteristics, let the details do the talking. Consider the difference between: Tara was nervous. And:  Tara’s hands trembled as she clutched the crumpled admission letter, her eyes darting anxiously across the room. The latter not only conveys nervousness but allows the reader to feel it.

Once the initial draft is complete, the journey towards perfection begins with thorough revision. Evaluate each sentence critically. Are the details vivid enough? Is the language evocative? Does the essay create a sensory experience for the reader? By refining and polishing the narrative, you elevate your descriptive essay to a level of unparalleled excellence.

Descriptive Essay Outline

See this general descriptive essay outline. 

I. Introduction

A. Hook : An engaging opening statement or question

B. Background information : A brief context to set the stage for the descriptive essay

C. Thesis statement : A clear and concise statement about the subject of the essay

II. Body Paragraphs

A. first body paragraph.

1. Topic Sentence : Introduction of the first aspect or feature to be described

2. Supporting Details : Specific details, examples, and sensory imagery

3. Transition Sentence : Bridge to the next aspect or feature (optional)

B. Second Body Paragraph

1. Topic Sentence : Introduction of the second aspect or feature to be described

C. Third Body Paragraph

1. Topic Sentence : Introduction of the third aspect or feature to be described

3. Transition Sentence : Bridge to the conclusion (optional)

III. Conclusion

A. Restate thesis : Summarize the main points discussed in the body paragraphs

B. Concluding Thoughts

1. Reflect on the significance of the subject

2. Concluding remarks that leave a lasting impression on the reader

See also the synthesis essay example here.

Examples of Descriptive Paragraph

The grand canyon’s majestic embrace.

As the first rays of the morning sun kissed the towering cliffs, the Grand Canyon revealed its awe-inspiring grandeur. A kaleidoscope of colors unfolded, painting the vast canvas of the canyon walls. The echoes of the Colorado River’s rhythmic dance filled the air, a testament to nature’s timeless symphony. The cool breeze carried the scent of ancient rocks, whispering tales of centuries gone by. Standing at the precipice, one couldn’t help but feel a humble connection to the eons of history etched into the very fabric of the canyon.

A Parisian Café’s Enchanting Spell

The quaint Parisian café exuded an air of timeless charm. The aroma of freshly baked croissants mingled with the rich fragrance of robust coffee. The muted chatter of patrons created a harmonious background melody, punctuated by the occasional laughter that danced through the air like musical notes. The checkered tablecloth, adorned with a single red rose in a slender vase, framed a moment frozen in time. In the heart of Montmartre, the café embraced visitors with the warmth of Parisian hospitality and the allure of its romantic ambiance.

The Impact of Descriptive Essays: Beyond Words on Paper

A well-thought-out descriptive essay has the power to transcend the boundaries of language, resonating with readers on a deeply emotional level. By tapping into the reader’s senses, these essays create an immersive experience that lingers long after the final words have been read. Whether describing the natural wonders of the world or capturing the essence of everyday moments, the impact of a descriptive essay extends far beyond the confines of its literary form.  

A Descriptive Essay Example

A descriptive essay about nature.

Nature, with its vast and enchanting landscapes, has been a timeless muse for poets, artists, and philosophers. It is a realm of boundless beauty, where every element intertwines to create a harmonious symphony. As the sun sets, casting a warm golden glow over the horizon, and the leaves rustle in the gentle breeze, one cannot help but be captivated by the intricate dance of life that unfolds in the embrace of Mother Nature.

Conclusion: Weaving Dreams with Words

Descriptive essays emerge as the virtuosos of storytelling. Through the careful selection of subjects, the artful use of imagery, and the meticulous crafting of language, these essays weave dreams with words, inviting readers to step into the realms they create. Aspiring writers, take heed: the path to mastery in descriptive writing lies in the ability to paint not just scenes but emotions, to create not just narratives but experiences. So, pick up your metaphorical brush, dip it in the hues of language, and embark on the journey of descriptive brilliance. Your readers await the magic that only descriptive essays can unveil.  

See also a descriptive essay about Paris.

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How to Write an Essay Outline + Essay Outline Examples

Download for free, how to write an essay outline + essay outline examples .

Writing an essay can seem like a daunting task, but one of the best ways to tackle this challenge is to organize your ideas into a well-structured essay outline. This guide will walk you through the process of creating an essay outline, complete with essay outline examples, to ensure your next essay is a masterpiece.

We’ve compiled a variety of essay outline examples to help you understand how to structure your own essay. We'll cover persuasive essays, narrative essays, descriptive essays, expository essays, and even provide a sample research paper outline. Each example will provide you with an idea of how to lay out the structure and details for each type of essay.

Looking for a printable list of essay outline examples? Our printable PDF features essay outline examples and templates that your students can use as examples when writing research papers, or as a supplement for an essay-writing unit

Why write an essay outline? 

An outline serves as the skeleton of your essay, giving you a clear and organized path to articulate your thoughts. Not only does it make writing an essay significantly easier, but it also allows you to present your arguments coherently and effectively.

An essay outline will help you organize your main ideas and determine the order in which you are going to write about them.

Student receives essay feedback A+ . Essay outline examples.

Types of essay outlines

Several types of essay outlines can be used when writing an essay. The two most common types are the alphanumeric outline and the decimal outline.

An alphanumeric outline typically uses Roman numerals, capital letters, Arabic numerals, and lowercase letters, in that order. Each level provides a different level of specificity. This structure is a very effective way to think through how you will organize and present the information in your essay. It also helps you develop a strong argumentative essay.

Alternatively, a decimal outline uses only numbers, and each subsection is a decimal subdivision of the main section. This type of outline is often used in scientific papers.

Persuasive essay outline example 

In the following section, we'll explore a persuasive essay outline example on competitive swimming. The purpose of a persuasive essay is to convince the reader of a particular point of view or idea, using compelling arguments and evidence.

In this case, the argument is that competitive swimming is an ideal sport for kids. The essay will present a series of arguments to support this view, demonstrating the various benefits of competitive swimming for children.

Competitive Swimming, an Ideal Sport for Kids

Introduction

Start your argumentative essay outline by stating your point of view and/or presenting your persuasive argument.

Thesis: Competitive swimming is a great alternative to other youth sports.

Body Paragraph 1

Introduce your primary persuasive argument and provide supporting details in your argumentative essay outline.

Topic Sentence:   Competitive swimming provides the same benefits as other sports.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   It is good exercise and builds muscular strength.
  • Detail Sentence 2:   It promotes cooperation among team members, especially in relays.

Body Paragraph 2

Introduce a secondary argument and provide supporting details.

Topic Sentence:   Competitive swimming provides some unique additional benefits.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   Swimming is an important skill that can be used forever.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  Swimming poses a reduced risk of injury.
  • Detail Sentence 3:   Each swimmer can easily chart his or her own progress.

Conclude your essay writing with a summary of the thesis and persuasive arguments. Brainstorming details that support your point-of-view is a great way to start before creating your outline and first draft.

Concluding Sentence:   There are many reasons why competitive swimming is a great alternative to other youth sports, including...

Narrative essay outline example

In the following section, we will examine a narrative essay outline example titled "How Losing a Swim Meet Made Me a Better Swimmer." Narrative essays aim to tell a story, often about a personal experience, to engage the reader and convey a particular point or lesson.

In this case, the narrative revolves around the author's personal journey of improvement and self-discovery through swimming. The essay will illustrate how an initial setback served as a catalyst for significant improvement and personal growth.

How Losing a Swim Meet Made Me a Better Swimmer

Introduce the subject of your narrative essay using a thesis statement and a plan of development (POD).

Thesis: The first time I participated in a competitive swim meet, I finished in last place. With more focused training and coaching, I was able to finish 2nd in the State Championship meet.

Plan of development:   I was very disappointed in my results from the first meet, so I improved my training and fitness. This helped me swim better and faster, which helped me to greatly improve my results.

Set the scene and provide supporting details. Again, start by brainstorming different ways to begin; then go ahead and craft an outline and a first draft.

Topic Sentence:   I was embarrassed at finishing last in my first competitive swim meet, so I began working on ways to improve my performance.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   I spent extra time with my coach and the team captains learning how to improve my technique.
  • Detail Sentence 2:   I started running and lifting weights to increase my overall fitness level.

Provide additional supporting details, descriptions, and experiences to develop your general idea in your essay writing.

Topic Sentence:   Over time, my results began to improve and I was able to qualify for the state championship meet.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   My technique and fitness level made me faster and able to swim longer distances.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  I steadily got better, and I began winning or placing in the top 3 at most of my meets.
  • Detail Sentence 3:  My results improved to the point that I was able to qualify for the state championship meet.

Body Paragraph 3

The next step in the writing process is to provide additional supporting details, descriptions, and experiences. You can then divide them up under different headings.

Topic Sentence:   With my new confidence, techniques, and fitness level, I was able to finish 2nd at the state championship meet.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   I was able to swim well against a higher level of competition due to my training and technique.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  I was no longer embarrassed about my last-place finish, and was able to use it as motivation!

Conclude the narrative essay with a recap of the events described or a reflection on the lesson learned in the story. Briefly summarize the details you included under each heading.

Concluding Sentence:   I used my last-place finish in my first competitive swim meet as motivation to improve my performance.

Descriptive essay outline example

We will now delve into a descriptive essay outline example. Descriptive essays aim to create a vivid and detailed description of a person, place, object, or event to paint a picture for the reader. The intention is to immerse the reader in the subject matter fully.

In this case, the essay provides an in-depth description of a visit to the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. The essay will use sensory and descriptive details to create a vivid and memorable experience for the reader.

Visiting the Hockey Hall of Fame

Introduce the subject of your descriptive essay with a thesis statement covering the person, place, object, etc. you are writing about.

Thesis: The Hockey Hall of Fame is full of sights, sounds, and experiences that will delight hockey fans of all ages.

Set the scene and provide factual details.

Topic Sentence:   The Hockey Hall of Fame is located in Toronto, Canada and features exhibits from amateur and professional hockey.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   The Hall is located in downtown Toronto and is visited by 1 million people every year.
  • Detail Sentence 2:   You can see exhibits ranging from the early beginnings of the sport to the modern NHL and Olympics.

Provide additional sensory details, descriptions, and experiences.

Topic Sentence:   There are many types of exhibits and shows, including activities you can participate in.

  • Detail Sentence 1:  Player statues, plaques, and jerseys decorate the walls in every room of the Hall.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  Many of the exhibits have movies and multimedia activities that make you feel like you're part of the game.
  • Detail Sentence 3:  You can even practice shooting pucks on virtual versions of some of the game's greatest goalies!

Conclude the essay with a paragraph that restates the thesis and recaps the descriptive and sensory details.

Concluding Sentence:   The Hockey Hall of Fame is an experience that combines the best sights, sounds and history of the game in Toronto.

Expository essay outline example

In the following section, we will explore an example of an expository essay. An expository essay aims to explain or describe a topic using logic. It presents a balanced analysis of a topic based on facts—with no references to the writer’s opinions or emotions.

For this example, the topic is "Why The School Year Should be Shorter". This essay will use logic and reason to demonstrate that a shorter school year could provide various benefits for students, teachers, and school districts.

Why The School Year Should be Shorter

Introduce the primary argument or main point of an expository essay, or other types of academic writing, using a thesis statement and context.

Thesis: The school year is too long, and should be shortened to benefit students and teachers, save districts money, and improve test scores and academic results. Other countries have shorter school years, and achieve better results.

Describe the primary argument and provide supporting details and evidence.

Topic Sentence:   A shorter school year would benefit students and teachers by giving them more time off.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   Students and teachers would be able to spend more time with their families.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  Teachers would be refreshed and rejuvenated and able to teach more effectively.

Provide additional supporting details and evidence, as in this essay outline example.

Topic Sentence:  A shorter school year would save school districts millions of dollars per year.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   Districts could save money on energy costs by keeping schools closed longer.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  A shorter school year means much lower supply and transportation costs.
  • Detail Sentence 3:  Well-rested and happy students would help improve test scores.

Provide additional or supplemental supporting details, evidence, and analysis, as in the essay outline example.

Topic Sentence:   Shortening the school year would also provide many benefits for parents and caregivers.

  • Detail Sentence 1:   A shorter school year would mean less stress and running around for parents.
  • Detail Sentence 2:  Caregivers would have more balance in their lives with fewer days in the school year.

Conclude the essay with an overview of the main argument, and highlight the importance of your evidence and conclusion.

Concluding Sentence:   Shortening the school year would be a great way to improve the quality of life for students, teachers, and parents while saving money for districts and improving academic results.

Sample research paper outline

Now let’s dive into a research paper outline. Unlike a typical essay, a research paper presents a thorough and detailed study on a specific topic. However, it shares the same foundation with an essay in terms of structuring the ideas logically and coherently. The outline for a research paper includes an introduction, a series of topic points that cover various aspects of the main topic, and a conclusion.

This research paper will explore the background of Mt. Everest, the major explorers who attempted its summit, and the impact of these expeditions on Mt. Everest and the local community.

The Conquest of Mt. Everest

  • Location of Mt. Everest
  • Geography of the Surrounding Area
  • Height of the mountain
  • Jomolungma (Tibetan name)
  • Sagarmatha (Nepalese name)
  • The number of people who have climbed Everest to date
  • First to reach the summit (1953)
  • Led a team of experienced mountain climbers who worked together
  • Norgay was an experienced climber and guide who accompanied Hillary
  • Sherpas still used to guide expeditions
  • Leader of the failed 1996 expedition
  • Led group of (mainly) tourists with little mountain climbing experience
  • Loss of trees due to high demand for wood for cooking and heating for tourists.
  • Piles of trash left by climbing expeditions
  • Expedition fees provide income for the country
  • Expeditions provide work for the Sherpas, contributing to the local economy.
  • Introduction of motor vehicles
  • Introduction of electricity

The Everest essay outline template is based on a research paper submitted by Alexandra Ferber, 9th grade.

Happy writing!

Writing an essay outline is a crucial step in crafting a well-structured and coherent essay. Regardless of the type of essay - be it persuasive, narrative, descriptive, expository, or a research paper - an outline serves as a roadmap that organizes your thoughts and guides your writing process. The various essay outline examples provided above serve as a guide to help you structure your own essay. Remember, the key to a great essay lies not just in the content but in its organization and flow. Happy writing!

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descriptive essay

How to Write a Descriptive Essay?

example of a descriptive essay outline

If you were wondering - 'what is a descriptive essay?', then our helpful guide will clear all your confusion. Our experts from the descriptive essay writing service explain the descriptive essay definition as a writing type that calls for the authors to explain specific objects, people, memories, events, places, or experiences. It should appeal to the reader’s senses to help them create this experience. For example, a descriptive essay about the beach can use the following descriptions - the sounds of the waves and birds, the smell of the sea, the feel of the ocean spray, the color of the sea against the sky, and even the taste of the salt in the air. This gives the reader more than just an understanding of the beach; it helps them feel the setting as they are right there. Now, let's explore the descriptive essay writing specifics and get familiar with some useful techniques!

Meanwhile if you want unique ideas for a descriptive essay, contact our paper writing service to provide you with excellent descriptive essay topics!

5 senses

How to Start a Descriptive Essay?

To begin, you need to have a few descriptive essay topic options. According to custom writing experts, popular description subjects include a person, a place, an experience, or a memory. Once your theme is chosen, you will begin your outline, much like any other essay. Your outline is where you chart your topic, examples, and details in the relevant order to help create a flow of information and details before you begin descriptive writing.

place person essay

Descriptive Essays about a Place

Descriptive essays about a place are common because when talking about a specific place, you're naturally trying to create an experience for your reader. So with this descriptive essay example, you will explain how it looks, smells, feels, sounds, etc., enhancing it with concrete details and figurative language. An example would be the beach essay referenced earlier in this article. When writing about the beach, you can talk about how all your senses experience the beach. Similar descriptive essay examples about a place include:

  • Describing your favorite vacation spot
  • Your dream house in detail
  • Painting a picture of the neighborhood you grew up in on a summer day

The end goal for a descriptive essay about a place is to help the reader feel like they are there, seeing the things you’ve seen, and experiencing the location just as you did.

Meanwhile, if you need some help with other assignments, use our nursing essay writing services . Don't forget to check out our essay service review to feel confident in us!

example of a descriptive essay outline

Descriptive Essays about a Person

Descriptive essays about a person are very common as well. The following are great examples:

  • Your mom or dad
  • A role model
  • Your favorite celebrity
  • Your childhood or current best friend

And the list goes on. Your essay should include descriptions of how the person looks, a scent that may be associated with them, like a favorite perfume or cologne they wear, how their voice sounds, and how their hand feels when you hold or shake it or even the feel of their hair. There are many ways to incorporate the five senses that help the reader feel like they have met the person and can visualize them.

Descriptive Essays about an Experience or Memory

A descriptive essay can also be about an experience. Describing your dream wedding or even your actual wedding is a great example of a descriptive essay about an experience. A helpful list of descriptive essay ideas and topics can be found here. As long as you include details in a way that helps the reader to not only visualize the wedding but to feel like they were there listening to the music, tasting the food, dancing with friends, etc. it is a descriptive essay. Additional topics for descriptive essays about memories include:

  • Your earliest childhood memory
  • Your first day of school
  • What happened the first time you drove a car

Outline for a Descriptive Essay

A descriptive essay format is much like any other essay where you need to capture the reader’s attention. The best way to do that is with an 'attention grabber' thesis statement. This can be the first sentence in the introductory paragraph that evoke personal feelings in your reader. Next, you need to present the topic in your descriptive essay introduction. Whether it’s a memory, object, person, or place, you need to establish the topic and why it’s relevant without giving away all the exciting information. Then, to follow the topic, you need to include a description and why it may be relevant or interesting to the reader. Remember to keep it exciting with a clear and concise language to keep your audience engaged.

descriptive outline

Finally, you need to include what is known as “sensory language”. This is how you incorporate the five senses into your essay. By using key details and descriptions you can relate your topic to all five senses, or as many of the senses as possible, to create that experience for your reader. When using sensory language you can go so far beyond just telling a story and for the reader, it is much more interesting than reading a plain story. With sensory language the reader gets to imagine they are there, going through the experience or seeing the object or at the place you are describing. It is much more of an exciting literary experience reading a descriptive essay than any other type of essay.

How to Conclude

The last section in your descriptive essay outline is the conclusion. Here, you want to do more than simply restating your topic and details. Once you have given all the information about your subject, your conclusion allows the reader to reflect on those details. Why is this topic important? This is your chance to tell them! Explain the reasoning behind your topic. Why did you write about that? Why does that experience, person, etc., stand out to you, and why should they matter to the reader? Finally, the conclusion gives you a chance to offer all that information to your readers.

Another unique aspect of a descriptive essay conclusion is the second 'attention grabber.' You hooked the audience at the beginning with a statement that excited them to continue reading. This same idea should be used in your conclusion to help readers to remember your entire essay. Rather than just reading, enjoying it, and moving on, you want your essay to permeate your readers' mind and stay there for a long time. By closing with a statement that reinforces the ideas you’ve written about but is also thought-provoking and profound, readers will think about your essay long after they’ve read it. After all, isn’t that always our goal when writing?

More Academic Help

When writing a descriptive essay, or any kind of paper for that matter, it is always a good idea to read other examples. This way, you can see how others are using descriptive language, how their paper flows, etc. If you need such examples, order essay samples from our descriptive essay writer pros and review them in more detail.

Writing a sample of descriptive essay can be daunting when you’re struggling with the topic. You might be unsure how to incorporate the senses into your text, help paint an even more vivid picture of your topic, or hook your audience to entice them to read and remember your essay. However, it doesn’t have to be. With the information and links provided in this article and the help from some professional essay writers , your next descriptive essay writing experience should be a breeze.

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Descriptive Essay Writing

Descriptive Essay Outline

John K.

Learn How to Create a Descriptive Essay Outline

Published on: Jun 4, 2019

Last updated on: Jan 5, 2023

Descriptive Essay Outline

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A descriptive essay is a type of essay in which an essay writer describes something creatively. It helps the reader to feel like they are experiencing what they are reading. A perfect descriptive essay uses sensory details to portray the person, place, event, or object.

However, an excellent descriptive essay is incomplete without a proper outline. For a great essay, you must create an outline. It provides a skeleton to your essay and makes your descriptive writing organized.

Therefore, continue reading this blog and get to know about how to create a descriptive essay outline.

5 Paragraph Descriptive Essay Outline Structure

For a good essay, you should create an outline. The outline must always follow the format of the descriptive essay. The descriptive essay outline follows a five-paragraph essay structure. Its structure is not difficult or complex.

The five-paragraph essay structure is a well-known and popular method for writing essays. This type of structure follows an introduction, two-three body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

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Here is a basic structure of the five-paragraph descriptive essay outline.

  • Introduction
  • Provide a hook statement
  • Introduce the topic
  • Give some background information.
  • Conclude with a thesis statement.
  • Body Paragraphs
  • Introduce the topic in detail.
  • Add human senses details.
  • Include actual details.
  • Use transition sentences/words .
  • Wrap up the essay.
  • Restate the main points and thesis statement .

Therefore, follow this structure and make sure that you maintain a good flow for the essay. Also, take a look at this template and get an idea of a good descriptive essay outline.

Descriptive Essay Outline Template

How to Write a Descriptive Essay Outline?

A good way to write a descriptive essay is to use descriptive language and create an outline. It works as a central idea or a road map that will help you throughout the writing process. Also, it assists you in choosing the right descriptive essay topic .

When you create the essay outline , you should know that a structured outline is your golden ticket. Without it, you will never create a successful descriptive essay.

A well-structured descriptive essay outline is composed of three parts:

1. Descriptive Essay Introduction A good essay introduction will help the reader read further and get an idea of the entire essay. The introductory paragraph introduces the essay topic to the readers. Provide a little background information for the readers to understand your work, but keep it concise and interesting.

When you write the descriptive essay introduction, it contains the following elements:

  • Hook Statement: Start the essay with an attention-grabbing hook statement. It is the statement that builds interest and makes an assertive claim about the topic.
  • Background Information: After the hook, provide background information and tell the reader what you are about to describe or explain. Give them a brief context of your topic.
  • Thesis Statement: The thesis statement should come at the end of the introduction. It is a short summary of the entire work. Also, it includes the main purpose of the essay.

2. Descriptive Essay Body Paragraphs The essay body is the main part of the essay, in which you fully develop your argument. It helps to prove the thesis statement and describe the main purpose of the essay. Also, include the sensory details and a complete description of the topic.

Normally, the essay body paragraphs are 2-3, but it depends on your essay topic and requirements.

A good body paragraph of the descriptive essay should contain the following information:

Have a look at this information in detail.

  • Topic Sentence: Each body paragraph starts with a topic sentence that describes to the reader what you will be discussing. Every paragraph has a different idea, and each discusses one aspect or part of the overall essay.
  • Sensory Details: Add sensory details about the chosen topic. For example, if you write about an object, you will explain its looks, tastes, smells, sounds, etc. It helps the reader relate them to your essay.
  • Actual Details: Include the actual details like descriptive information about the subject. Provide a deeper level of details about the topic.
  • Transition Sentences / Words: Use transition words or sentences within or between the paragraphs. It helps to make a connection between them and helps the readers to understand the essay easily.
  • In-text Citation: When you get information or data from another writer’s work, cite them properly. It is better to give credit to their work and save yourself from plagiarism issues.
  • Conclusion: Each body paragraph concludes with an informative analysis of the idea related to the topic.

3. Descriptive Essay Conclusion The conclusion is the final section, in which you summarize the entire essay. It provides a brief snippet that you have already discussed in the essay. However, the essay conclusion should be interesting and leave a strong impression on the reader’s mind.

A good essay conclusion should include a few things, such as:

  • Restate the thesis statement.
  • Summary of ideas.
  • Tell the importance of the essay.
  • End with a powerful sentence.

Descriptive Essay Outline Examples

The importance of an essay outline is that it enables the writer to organize their thoughts before they convey them. Before writing, one must be aware of what points they wish to communicate with the audience. Otherwise, there will always feel like something left unsaid or overlooked in your work.

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Here is an example that you can use for your help.

Writing a descriptive essay outline is simple and easy if you take help from the examples. For your help, we have compiled some great examples that will help in creating the perfect essay outline.

Descriptive Essay Outline about a Person

Descriptive Essay Outline about a Place

Descriptive Essay Outline Middle School

Descriptive Essay Outline Worksheet

Descriptive Essay Outline Sample

Descriptive Essay Writing Tips

You understand how to make an outline for a descriptive essay. Here are some tips to help you write a great essay without any problems.

  • Come up with some ideas for topics for your descriptive essay. Pick something interesting and unique.
  • Create a plan for your essay. This will help you organize your thoughts.
  • Describe the subject in detail, including all sensory information.
  • To organize your ideas properly, use transition words to connect them logically.
  • Edit your essay to make it perfect.

In order to write a perfect descriptive essay, it's important that you create an outline. The best way is by taking help from examples and creating your own well-written outline.

Now you know and understand how to create a descriptive essay outline. But if you still need professional help and expert writing tips, consult FreeEssayWriter.net .

Our experienced essay writer can help you in drafting the perfect essay. We are the best essay writing service, and all your write my essay requests are managed by professional essay writers.

So, place your order now and get the best professional essay writing help from our writers.

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Descriptive Essay Writing

Descriptive Essay Examples

Barbara P

Amazing Descriptive Essay Examples for Your Help

Published on: Jun 21, 2023

Last updated on: Mar 1, 2024

Descriptive Essay Examples

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Descriptive Essay: Definition, Tips & Examples

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Descriptive essays are very commonly assigned essays. This type of essay enhances students' writing skills and allows them to think critically. 

A descriptive essay is often referred to as the parent essay type. Other essays like argumentative essays, narrative essays, and expository essays fall into descriptive essays. Also, this essay helps the student enhance their ability to imagine the whole scene in mind by appealing senses.

It is assigned to high school students and all other students at different academic levels. Students make use of the human senses like touch, smell, etc., to make the descriptive essay more engaging for the readers. 

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Examples make it easy for readers to understand things in a better way. Also, in a descriptive essay, different types of descriptions can be discussed. 

Here are some amazing examples of a descriptive essay to make the concept easier for you. 

Descriptive Essay Example 5 Paragraph

5 paragraphs essay writing format is the most common method of composing an essay. This format has 5 paragraphs in total. The sequence of the paragraphs is as follows;

  • Introduction
  • Body Paragraph 1
  • Body Paragraph 2 
  • Body Paragraph 3
  • Conclusion 

Following is an example of a descriptive essay written using the famous 5 paragraph method. 

5 Paragraph Descriptive Essay

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Descriptive Essay Example About A Person

Descriptive essays are the best option when it comes to describing and writing about a person.  A descriptive essay is written using the five human senses. It helps in creating a vivid image in the reader’s mind and understanding what the writer is trying to convey. 

Here is one of the best descriptive essay examples about a person. Read it thoroughly and try to understand how a good descriptive essay is written on someone’s personality.

Descriptive Essay Example About a Person

Descriptive Essay Example About A Place

If you have visited a good holiday spot or any other place and want to let your friends know about it. A descriptive essay can help you explain every detail and moment you had at that place. 

Here is one of the good descriptive essay examples about a place. Use it as a sample and learn how you can write such an essay. 

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Descriptive Essay Example for Grade 6

Descriptive essays are frequently assigned to school students. This type of essay helps the students enhance their writing skills and helps them see things in a more analytical way.

If you are a 6 grader and looking for a good descriptive essay example, you are in the right place.  

Descriptive Essay Example for Grade 7

Here is one of the best descriptive essay examples for grade 7. 

Descriptive Essay Example for Grade 8

If you are looking for some amazing descriptive essay examples for grade 8, you have already found one. Look at the given example and see what a well-written descriptive essay looks like. 

Descriptive Essay Example for Grade 10

Essay writing is an inevitable part of a student's academic life . No matter your grade, you will get to write some sort of essay at least once. 

Here is an example of a descriptive essay writing for grade10. If you are also a student of this grade, this example might help you to complete your assignment.

Descriptive Essay Example for Grade 12

If you are a senior student and looking for some essay examples, you are exactly where you should be. 

Use the below-mentioned example and learn how to write a good essay according to the instructions given to you. 

Descriptive Essay Example College

Descriptive essays are a great way to teach students how they can become better writers. Writing a descriptive essay encourages them to see the world more analytically.

Below is an example that will help you and make your writing process easy.

College Descriptive Essay Example

Descriptive Essay Example for University

Descriptive essays are assigned to students at all academic levels. University students are also assigned descriptive essay writing assignments. As they are students of higher educational levels, they are often given a bit of difficult and more descriptive topics. 

See the example below and know what a descriptive essay at the university level looks like. 

Short Descriptive Essay Example

Every time a descriptive essay isn't written in detail. It depends on the topic of how long the essay will be.  

For instance, look at one of the short descriptive essay examples given below. See how the writer has conveyed the concept in a composed way. 

Objective Descriptive Essay Example

When writing an objective description essay, you focus on describing the object without conveying your emotions, feelings, or personal reactions. The writer uses sight, sound, or touch for readers' minds to bring life into pictures that were painted by words.

Here is an example that you can use for your help. 

Narrative and Descriptive Essay Example

A narrative descriptive essay can be a great way to share your experiences with others. It is a story that teaches a lesson you have learned. The following is an example of a perfect narrative descriptive essay to help you get started.

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How to Start a Descriptive Essay? - Example

If you don't know how to start your descriptive essay, check this example and create a perfect one. 

How to Start a Descriptive Essay - Example

Subjective Descriptive Essay Example

It is a common concept that a descriptive essay revolves around one subject. Be it a place, person, event, or any other object you can think of. 

Following is one of the subjective descriptive, easy examples. Use it as a guide to writing an effective descriptive essay yourself. 

Writing a descriptive essay is a time-consuming yet tricky task. It needs some very strong writing, analytical, and critical thinking skills. Also, this is a type of essay that a student can not avoid and bypass. 

But if you think wisely, work smart, and stay calm, you can get over it easily. Learn how to write a descriptive essay from a short guide given below. 

How to Write a Descriptive Essay?

A writer writes a descriptive essay from their knowledge and imaginative mind. In this essay, the writer describes what he has seen or experienced, or ever heard from someone. For a descriptive essay, it is important to stay focused on one point. Also, the writer should use figurative language so that the reader can imagine the situation in mind. 

The following are some very basic yet important steps that can help you write an amazing descriptive essay easily. 

  • Choose a Topic

For a descriptive essay, you must choose a vast topic to allow you to express yourself freely. Also, make sure that the topic you choose is not overdone. An overdone will not grab the attention of your intended audience. Check out our descriptive essay topics blog for a variety of intriguing topic suggestions.

  • Create a Strong Thesis Statement

A thesis statement is the essence of any academic writing. When you select the descriptive essay topic, then you create a strong thesis statement for your essay.  

A thesis statement is a sentence or two that explains the whole idea of your essay to the reader. It is stated in the introductory paragraph of the essay. The word choice for creating the thesis statement must be very expressive, composed, and meaningful. Also, use vivid language for the thesis statement.  

  • Collect the Necessary Information

Once you have created the thesis statement and are done writing your essay introduction . Now, it's time to move toward the body paragraphs. 

Collect all necessary information related to your topic. You would be adding this information to your essay to support your thesis statement. Make sure that you collect information from authentic sources. 

To enhance your essay, make use of some adjectives and adverbs. To make your descriptive essay more vivid, try to incorporate sensory details like touch, taste, sight, and smell.

  • Create a Descriptive Essay Outline

An outline is yet another necessary element of your college essay. By reading the descriptive essay outline , the reader feels a sense of logic and a guide for the essay. 

In the outline, you need to write an introduction, thesis statement, body paragraphs and end up with a formal conclusion.

Proofreading is a simple procedure in which the writer revises the written essay. This is done in order to rectify the document for any kind of spelling or grammatical mistakes. Thus, proofreading makes high-quality content and gives a professional touch to it. 

You might be uncertain about writing a good enough descriptive essay and impress your teacher. However, it is very common, so you do not need to stress out. 

Hit us up at CollegeEssay.org and get an essay written by our professional descriptive essay writers. Our essay writing service for students aims to help clients in every way possible and ease their stress. Get in touch with our customer support team, and they will take care of all your queries related to your writing. 

You can always enhance your writing skills by leveraging the power of our AI essay writing tools .

Place your order now and let all your stress go away in a blink! 

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Examples

Short Narrative Essay

Short narrative essay generator.

example of a descriptive essay outline

Everyone finds it interesting to tell stories about their lives or about someone else’s. Through those stories, we can get lessons which we can apply in our daily lives. This is what a narrative essay is all about. Let’s go back to your experiences when you were still in grade school. Your teacher would often ask you to write about your favorite experiences especially during Christmas season and summer vacation.

Some people would mistakenly identify a narrative essay as equally the same as a descriptive essay . They are totally different from each other, yet both of them are forms of academic writing . Look into this article to learn more about narrative essays.

What is Short Narrative Essay?

A short narrative essay is a brief piece of writing that tells a story, usually focusing on a particular experience, event, or moment. It follows a narrative structure, involving characters, a setting, a plot, and a conclusion, aiming to engage the reader through vivid descriptions and storytelling techniques within a concise format.

Best Short Narrative Essay Examples?

Title: The Summer Adventure

The scorching sun bore down on the dusty road as we embarked on our summer adventure. Packed into the old, battered car, my family and I set off for the great outdoors. The air hummed with anticipation, echoing our excitement for the unknown.

As we traversed winding roads, the landscape unfolded like a painting. Rolling hills adorned with emerald-green trees greeted us, promising the allure of exploration. The scent of pine wafted through the open windows, mingling with laughter and the crackling excitement of adventure.

Our destination? A secluded lakeside campsite embraced by nature’s serenity. The promise of tranquil waters and starlit nights ignited our spirits. Upon arrival, we pitched our weathered tent, a ritual signaling the beginning of our escape from routine.

Days melted into each other, filled with hikes through dense forests, dips in cool, crystal-clear waters, and evenings spent around crackling campfires. We discovered hidden trails, stumbled upon secret meadows, and marveled at nature’s splendid orchestra of sounds and colors.

But amidst the beauty lay unexpected challenges. Unforgiving storms threatened our haven, testing our resilience. Yet, huddled together, we found solace in each other’s company, discovering strength in unity.

As the final sun dipped behind the horizon, casting its golden glow upon the rippling waters, a bittersweet sensation enveloped us. The adventure had drawn to a close, leaving behind cherished memories etched in our hearts.

Reluctantly, we packed our belongings, bidding farewell to the tranquil haven that had nurtured us. With weary but contented hearts, we embarked on the journey back, carrying not just souvenirs but a treasure trove of shared experiences and the promise of future escapades.

The car rolled away from the lakeside, but the echoes of laughter, the scent of pine, and the warmth of togetherness lingered, reminding us of the magical summer adventure that had woven us closer together.

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5. Short Narrative Essay Format

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7. Five-Paragraph Short Narrative Essay

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What is a Narrative Essay?

A narrative essay is a type of academic writing that allows you to narrate about your experiences. This follows a certain outline just like what we have observed in argumentative essays , informative essays and more. The outline consists of the introduction, body paragraph and conclusion.

This is a type of essay that tells a story either from the point of view of the author or from the personal experience of the author. It should also be able to incorporate characteristics such as the ability to make and support a claim, develop specific viewpoint, put conflicts and dialogue in the story, and to use correct information.  You may also see personal narrative essay examples & samples

The purpose of a narrative essay is to be able to tell stories may it be real or fictional. To enable us to write a perfect narrative essay, the author should include the necessary components used for telling good stories, a good climax, setting, plot and ending.

How To Write a Narrative Essay?

Compared to all types of academic essay , the narrative essay is the simplest one. It is simply written like the author is just writing a very simple short story. A typical essay has only a minimum of four to five paragraphs contain in the three basic parts: introduction, body paragraph and conclusion. A narrative essay has five elements namely the characters, plot, conflict, setting and theme.

Plot – this tells what happened in the story or simply the sequence of events. There are five types of plot: exposition, rising action, climax, falling action and resolution. The exposition is the an information that tells about background of the story. It can be about the character, the setting, events, etc. Rising action  is where the suspense of a story begins. It helps build toward the climax of a story. Climax  is the most intense part of the story.  Falling action  happens after the climax when it is already almost the end of the story.  Resolution is the part where the problem has already been resolved.

Characters – it is the person or other being that is a part of the narrative performs an action or speak a dialogue .

Conflict – this is the struggle or the problem that is faced by the characters of the story. This can be an external conflict and an internal conflict. An external conflict is a type of problem that is experienced in the external world. An internal conflict is the type of conflict that refers to the characters’ emotions and argument within itself.

Setting – this is knowing where and when the story takes place. This can be a powerful element because it makes the readers feel like they are the characters in the story.

Theme – this is what the author is trying to convey. Examples of a theme are romance, death, revenge, friendship, etc. It is the universal concept that allows you to understand the whole idea of the story.

How to write a short narrative essay?

  • Select a Theme or Experience: Choose a specific event, moment, or experience that you want to narrate.
  • Outline the Story: Plan the narrative by outlining the key elements – characters, setting, plot, and a clear beginning, middle, and end.
  • Engaging Introduction: Start with a hook to captivate readers’ attention, introducing the setting or characters involved.
  • Develop the Plot: Write body paragraphs that progress the story logically, describing events, actions, and emotions, using vivid details and sensory language to immerse readers.
  • Character Development: Focus on character traits, emotions, and reactions to make the story relatable and engaging.
  • Climax and Resolution: Build tension towards a climax, followed by a resolution or lesson learned from the experience.
  • Concise Conclusion: Conclude the essay by summarizing the experience or reflecting on its significance, leaving a lasting impression on the reader.
  • Revise and Edit: Review the essay for coherence, clarity, grammar, and punctuation, ensuring it flows smoothly.

What are the 3 parts of a narrative essay?

  • Introduction: Sets the stage by introducing the story’s characters, setting, and providing a glimpse of the main event or experience. It often includes a hook to capture the reader’s attention.
  • Body: Unfolds the narrative, presenting the sequence of events, actions, emotions, and details that drive the story forward. It develops the plot, characters, and setting.
  • Conclusion: Summarizes the narrative, reflecting on the significance of the experience or event, and often delivers a lesson learned or leaves a lasting impression on the reader.

How do you start a narrative essay with examples?

  • ” ‘Are we there yet?’ echoed in my ears as our family car trudged along the endless highway, marking the beginning of our unforgettable summer road trip.”
  • “The sun dipped low on the horizon, casting a warm, golden hue over the serene lake. It was there, amidst the tranquil waters, that my adventure began.”
  • “The deafening roar of applause faded as I stepped onto the stage, my heart racing with anticipation. Little did I know, that moment would change everything.”
  • “Looking back, it all started with a single decision. That decision, made in a moment of uncertainty, led to a series of events that transformed my life.”
  • “The scent of freshly baked cookies wafted through the air, mingling with the joyous laughter of children. It was a typical afternoon, until an unexpected visitor knocked on our door.”

How do you start a narrative introduction?

You may start by making the characters have their conversation or by describing the setting of the story. You may also give background information to the readers if you want.

What makes a good narrative?

A good narrative makes the readers entertained and engage in a way that they will feel like they are becoming a part of the narrative itself. They should also be organized and should possess a good sequence of events.

How many paragraphs are there in personal narratives?

Usually, there are about five paragraphs.

How many paragraphs are in a short narrative essay?

A short narrative essay typically comprises an introductory paragraph introducing the story, three to four body paragraphs unfolding the narrative, and a concluding paragraph summarizing the experience.

How long is a short narrative essay?

A short narrative essay typically ranges from 500 to 1500 words, aiming to convey a concise and focused story or experience within a limited word count.

Narrative essays are designed to express and tell experiences making it an interesting story to share. It has the three basic parts and contains at least five elements. If you plan to create a good narrative essay, be sure to follow and assess if your narrative has all the characteristics needed to make it sound nice and pleasing.

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How to Write a Narrative Essay to Score Top Marks: Top Tips

How to write a narrative essay to score top marks

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How to write a narrative essay? This task has never been an easy task for students. The fact is that it requires showing off your experiences, life-changing moments, and outstanding events that had an impact on your personality. So, what is the main challenge of a narrative essay, and how to write it? 

First, it is difficult to determine the moment you want to describe. Second, the writing process itself requires excellent skills and the ability to convey facts excitingly. Moreover, you need to understand the requirements and choose a suitable format. And all this is just the top of a glacier! 

However, there is good news. I’m here to help! So, get ready to find the answers to the crucial questions about effective writing right here.

Let’s begin with identifying the core features of personal narratives. What do most successful academic papers have in common? 

  • First-person perspective: The key feature of this type of paper is that it must be written in the first person. You need to write about yourself, not your favorite artists or teachers. 
  • Engaging opening: Your essay must grab the readers' attention from its first lines. 
  • Detailed descriptions: Each sentence matters. Don’t be afraid to add bright descriptions of the environment, mood, and other aspects that make your story unique. 
  • Emotional resonance: Your essay should touch the hearts of the readers. Avoid composing a long monologue with a list of simple facts. 
  • Clear goal: According to the narrative format rules, your paper must not be a biography or a story without a clear purpose. Make sure it has an easily recognizable goal. 

Logical organization: Looking at most narrative essay examples, you will notice that they all have a logical flow.

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When writing a narrative essay, you must follow the main rules of completing this academic assignment. To make your job easier, I developed this guide to cover all the questions and blind spots most students usually face. So, it’s high time to discover all the critical aspects of crafting an excellent paper.

What is a narrative essay: defining the concept

Before you jump into writing and exploring the main rules for this tricky academic paper, it is necessary to have a closer look at the basics. So, what is a narrative essay? The main thing you need to know about it is that it must be a unique story from the writer’s viewpoint. As a rule, it covers topics related to your experiences, events, and memories. However, your writing shouldn’t be a monotonous bunch of facts. Make sure to describe facts easily, interestingly, and engagingly.

Unlike other types of academic papers, a personal narrative puts storytelling first. You can also use the following elements to make your story catchier:

  • Diverse descriptions; 
  • Chronological order.

Grasping the Fundamentals of Narrative Essays

You can effortlessly find many narrative essay examples online. However, you need to know that college and high school papers of this kind usually have some differences. Moreover, each one usually has a long list of requirements and unique features. Here is a list of what you should take into account when exploring the needs of narrative writing:

  • Essay structure;
  • Paper length;
  • Style of writing;
  • Rules for creating a thesis statement;
  • Requirements for the introduction;
  • Requirements for the body paragraphs;
  • Requirements for the conclusion.

Even experienced students often feel lost when facing this type of academic assignment. What is more, this challenge makes them ask one crucial question: “Is there anyone who can write my essay for me?”. This issue disturbs even the most talented and skilled students. Fortunately, there are professional writing services that are always ready to help. But if you still want to complete your assignment yourself, it’s time to choose a topic!  

Top narrative essay topics for academic success

There are hundreds of narrative essay topics available online. Still, I highly recommend you develop your own. Feel free to use the tips below to identify your only idea. 

  • Think of your experiences: This prompt might sound obvious. However, many students often start by looking for ideas online or asking artificial intelligence platforms to generate a list of possible solutions. But what about diving into your own memories?
  • Find out particular lessons: You surely have a particular experience that shaped your character. What about telling about it in your personal narrative?
  • Don’t think only about yourself: Your audience matters, too! Select an intriguing and relevant topic that will not make your readers yawn.
  • Make a list: Sometimes, you might invent a few personal narrative topics that look good. Write all your ideas down. The reason is that a chosen idea might suddenly turn out to be unsuitable when you start writing. For this case, you need a plan B (or even plan C). 
  • Choose an uncommon angle: If you select a common topic, you must find a unique approach to describe it. Try to add some fresh ideas to your storytelling. 
  • Test: If you can’t choose a topic between several alternatives, try to compare them. You can also draw a small draft for each to define narrative writing that will likely suit all your requirements and expectations. 
  • Listen to your gut: Intuition works not only to teach important life lessons. It might help you with choosing a good topic, too. 

Narrative essay examples

You may use dozens of literacy narrative topics and other solutions for your paper. Here is a list of some ideas for you:

  • A Moment of Courage: Overcoming a Fear That Changed My Life
  • Lost and Found: A Journey of Self-Discovery during Travel
  • The Day Everything Changed: A Personal Reflection on a Major Life Event
  • Lessons from Failure: How Setbacks Have Shaped My Character
  • An Unforgettable Friendship: The Story of a Lifelong Bond
  • From Dream to Reality: Pursuing a Passion against All Odds
  • The Power of Forgiveness: Healing Wounds and Moving Forward

Crafting an excellent narrative essay structure 

After you’ve decided on a topic, it’s time to build a skeleton for your essay. Learners often have issues when creating their first narrative essay structure. Still, if you understand the basic elements of your paper, you will get almost half of the job done:

  • Plot: It is a sequence of events that organically come one after another in your story. Avoid jumping between facts from different parts of your paper.  
  • Characters: Of course, you must be your story’s protagonist. However, don’t focus only on your personality. There should be other people, too.
  • Setting: This is a description of the environment where your story takes place. Pay more attention to this part, as it can spice up your narration. 
  • Dialogs: Double-check whether all the dialogues add value to your personal narrative and are realistic. 
  • Climax: This is the heart of your story. It is better to describe it with the highest tension and feature-rich facts.
  • Final: This is the resolution of your story. After you’ve reached a final thought, you can add a brief summary and end your paper.

Narrative essay outline: top prompts

Now that you know your paper's critical elements, it’s time for a narrative essay outline. As a rule, it must have a chronological order and traditional essay structure:

Introduction

  • Hook: Similar to many other academic papers, your narrative should have a hook and a good-looking opening sentence. Make sure your intro attracts attention and doesn’t look obvious or boring. A good introduction is one of the keys to receiving an excellent grade for your assignment. 
  • Background: Here, you are expected to describe some settings, characters, and minor details to allow the readers to imagine your story better.
  • Thesis statement: Your thesis statement must briefly describe the main goal of your narrative writing. 
  • Flow of events: Your paragraphs should be organized and chronological. Always follow your story’s timeline. 
  • Dialogs: Although the traditional narrative essay format doesn’t require using dialogs, most students add them to their papers. This approach allows them to describe all the events and characters much easier. 
  • Reflection: Remember that your essay must demonstrate your feelings and emotions. 
  • Summary: Almost any academic paper requires a short and powerful summary. Personal narratives are not an exception to this rule.
  • Reflective end-up: Use your closing to connect with the thesis.
  • Impression: Try to leave an impression on the readers and make them think about your paper a few moments after you’ve finished it. 

Types of narratives: learning from examples

There are several types of narratives you need to distinguish:  

  • Personal: Focuses on a specific experience or event. It usually shares insights or lessons learned.
  • Descriptive: This one usually describes a scene or event with the help of diverse sensory details.
  • Autobiographical: This solution recounts the author's life story and highlights milestones, challenges, and achievements.
  • Travel: Documents the author's experiences and observations during traveling.
  • Historical: This narrative writing recounts significant historical events or periods from a personal perspective, blending historical facts with reflections.
  • Literary: Explores themes, characters, and motifs of a literary work or genre, offering personal interpretation.
  • Ethnographic: Draws on the author's observations within a cultural or social context, offering insights into individuals or communities.

The narrative essay definition for high school students is not difficult. Moreover, it’s the same for all learners. However, you are expected to tell a story about the most important lessons in your life and share something meaningful for you. It shouldn’t be only funny or entertaining. You may also describe how you’ve made mature choices and the right decisions (regardless of how tough they were.)

If you google “define narrative essay for college students,” you will find out that it is developed to demonstrate your best qualities through the description of a particular life event. Don’t hesitate to put your creativity into practice and use unique writing approaches. A few things most professors value in this type of academic paper created by college learners:

  • Your ability to be flexible and adapt to drastically changing life situations;
  • Your creative problem-solving skills;
  • Your ability to take lessons from the mistakes you’ve made.

How to write a narrative essay: tips to achieve top marks 

  • Choose a compelling topic: What is the purpose of narrative writing? Make sure you find the answer and then select a meaningful topic.
  • Create a strong thesis: Develop a clear thesis statement that conveys your narrative's main message or lesson.
  • Use vivid descriptions: Engage the reader by incorporating sensory details and descriptive language to picture the events and characters vividly.
  • Establish a clear structure: When writing a narrative essay, organize it chronologically. Develop a clear beginning, middle, and end.
  • Maintain a consistent point of view: Stick to a consistent narrative perspective throughout the essay.
  • Include dialogue: Dialogs can bring your characters to life and add authenticity to your narrative.
  • Show, don't tell: Instead of simply stating events, you must show them through actions, emotions, and sensory experiences.
  • Reflect on significance: Reflect on the event's significance and share insights when writing a narrative essay.
  • Edit and revise: Don’t forget to revise your essay for clarity, coherence, and impact.
  • Seek feedback: Get feedback from peers, instructors, or mentors to improve your narrative.

Many students report serious difficulties with completing a narrative academic assignment. Can I pay someone to write my paper? Hundreds of learners often ask this question. And the answer is “Yes!” In this case, you will get a perfectly written, proofread, and original paper crafted according to all your requirements.

But what if you decide to write on your own? This way, the best answer to how to write a narrative essay is to understand its core concepts and strictly follow your professor’s guidelines.

FAQs on writing brilliant narrative essays

How can i make my narrative essay stand out from others.

Many narrative essay ideas can be found online. However, to stand out, it is better to find a unique topic for your assignment. 

What are common mistakes most students make in narrative writing?

The most common mistakes in a personal narrative are failing to follow an essay structure, failing to include a thesis statement, and sharing too many diverse facts. 

How can I revise my narrative essay?

You must review your paper for clarity, consistency, and coherence, edit grammar and mechanics, enhance descriptive language, trim unnecessary details, check a narrative format, ensure a strong conclusion, and conduct a final proofread.

Should I use dialogues in a narrative essay?

This rule is not 100% obligatory. However, if you search for successful narrative essay examples online, you will discover that almost all have dialogs. 

What are the best ways to improve the essay’s flow?

Use a chronological order and a strict timeline when polishing your academic paper. 

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