4 Tips on How to Write a Descriptive Essay

4 Tips on How to Write a Descriptive Essay

Published by on 2021-04-22 12:34:49

Learning how to write a descriptive paper can be quite an interesting task to do. Of course, before you even begin, you need to know the goal of such a task as well as all its writing specifics. Fortunately,  the Internet nowadays is full of help for students like yourself. All you have to do is to show determination in learning all this information. So, without further ado, here are four tips on how to write a good descriptive essay. Hopefully, you will feel much more confident and inspired about starting this work by the end of this article. 

What is a descriptive essay?

If you find yourself confused about how to begin a descriptive essay, you should start by learning more about this assignment. After all, you have to know the answer to “What is a descriptive essay meant to do?” before you make your first draft. Thus, you need to have a clear idea of the purpose of your writing. This paper aims to provide a description of a certain event, location, art, or else. There is no single way on how to do a descriptive essay. You don’t have many limitations or strict rules here. However, there are certain expectations and landmarks that you must meet to have a good paper. 

Often students confuse this purpose with the need to explain those objects or events at the question. This is a common mistake. Your goal is to give a reader a full understanding of the topic without analyzing it or giving your take on it. It can be quite unusual at first. You have to balance that fine line between expressing your vision of a subject without falling into explaining it. However, once you understand the purpose of this assignment, you’ll easily master the technique of doing it well. The best way to learn about this type of essay is to look for examples of a descriptive essay online. hoose a strong topic

How do you write a descriptive essay without knowing what you are writing about? The answer is - you don’t. You need a good solid topic to be the base of your future work. The only problem here is to pick the one that fits the assignment, your interests, and knowledge best. Here are a few ideas for the paper topics: 

  1. The first day at school.
  2. The historical event you have witnessed.
  3. The historical event you research.
  4. Description of a book, art, building, movie.
  5. Any event of cultural importance.

Overall, any topic that you know well enough to talk about will do perfectly well here. Just remember, your goal is to enlighten your readers about this subject. Nothing more, nothing less. Let’s see how to write a descriptive essay in order to achieve that goal. 


More often than not, you will need to research the subject of your work. Whether it is a movie you have seen dozens of times or a historical event you witnessed yourself, it doesn't matter. First of all, you, like any other person, are prone to biased opinions. You may not give your reader a full picture based only on your interpretation. 

Secondly, it’s better to research the background. Thus, you can learn about the director's motivation to make the movie or the causes that led to a certain event in history. Overall, researching the subject can always give you another perspective and expand your understanding of the subject. 

Make an outline

Once you have all your theoretical work done, you may find yourself wondering how to start off a descriptive essay. Well, as always, you should start only by writing an outline. An outline is the crucial first step to any writing work. It is your chance to put all your thoughts, ideas, and narration onto the page. 

During this stage, you are making a map of your future work. You see where each of your ideas belongs. Next, you get to create smooth transitions between paragraphs. Finally, search for any loopholes in your plot and narration. Once you have an outline, you basically have the whole paper. All you are left to do is to enlarge it. 

Five paragraphs rule 

This type of paper needs to follow the classic five-paragraph rule. It means that your work structure is already predetermined, and all you need is to follow the guidelines. You got to start with the introduction. There is no other way of how to start a descriptive essay other than with a strong introduction. Your first paragraph must have a brief background, a purpose of your work, and a thesis statement.

Next, you insert body paragraphs. There can be more than three main paragraphs in the body, in case you are wondering. Their number depends on the required length of your work. Here is how to start a descriptive paragraph. First, write down the topic sentence. It carries the purpose of the paragraph. Next, expand on it. Bring in some explanation, add references. Make a brief conclusion in the last sentences to answer your topic sentence. 

The last paragraph of your work should be the conclusion. This is where you confirm or deny your thesis statement based on what you have covered in the text above. This part is also your last chance to see whether you are missing anything in the main body. If you don’t have enough evidence to come to the conclusion you wanted, add another paragraph with the evidence you are missing.