Throughout your college career, you’ll be asked to write all sorts of essays. One of the types that can be the most intimidating is the descriptive essay. This is especially true if you are an international student with a more limited grasp of English and what it means to create a good descriptive essay. Relax, it’s not as scary as it sounds. You really do have all the tools you need to write something incredible and unique. Let’s look at how you can do it.
1. Understand the Assignment
A descriptive essay is all about painting a picture. The key thing is understanding what you need to paint. Is it a person, place, time? This is extremely important to create the best descriptive essay. If the assignment is a person and you tell the whole scene or if it’s the scene and you only share a feeling, you’ve missed the mark.
2. Details, Details, Details
When you create a descriptive essay, you need the reader in the moment. It should be almost as good as being in the scene or looking at a picture. You need to visualize every detail and then write down what you see. This is one time when you cannot give too much detail. Really if you think you have too much, you are likely where you should be.
3. Adjectives Are Vital
Adjectives are your describing words. Colors, sizes, shapes, all come from adjectives. You have to really put yourself in the picture and share everything you see, smell, and hear. This is so crucial to accomplish the task. Give a ton of information with your word choice. Don’t use blanket vague descriptors like red. Use scarlet, blood, ruby, rose. See how all of those choices elicit a different mental image?
4. Do You Smell Something?
To create a great description, you can’t just address one sense. You have to hit them all. What was the smell of the person, place, or thing? How did it feel when you touched it? Did you taste it? Odds are several of your five senses created the experience for you so you can’t expect to share the experience with just one sense.
5. Stick to the Task
It can be very tempting to throw something random in at the end because you’re not sure that you’ve wrapped the essay correctly. The end is not a place to embellish or change the direction of the essay. It’s a description, not a story. It doesn’t need a hook or an ending that adds something new. Details yes, random finishing element, no.Using these tips, you are sure to create the best descriptive essay and maybe share a little something special about something that is uniquely you. Your international experience gives you a different perspective from the one the rest of the class has. Use that to your advantage and take the professor some place new and exciting. You’ll enjoy the experience and the grade it brings. You do have to graduate after all.
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