Humanities I Mrs. Cave-Mattie Descriptive Writing Before you leave your home each day, you probably use description. For example, you might describe a dream you had, how well you slept, or how well your breakfast tasted. Through description, patients tell doctors about their illnesses, travel agents tempt people to go on vacations, and victims lead detectives to criminals. What is Description? You experience your world through your senses: sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch. Description is writing that allows you to create your experiences vividly and share them with others. Most descriptive writing contains: Sensory language that describes what the writer hears, sees, tastes, smells, and feels. Precise language including vivid verbs and precise nouns Figurative language such as personification, simile, metaphor, exaggeration Logical organization How to Begin Once you choose your topic, you should study and think about it for a while. Think about its qualities. How does it look, smell, feel? Mind picture Imagine that you are planning a painting of your subject. Jot down every shape, color, texture, or feature that comes to mind. Also, record details firsthand as you observe your subject: sight, sounds, smells, and so on. Then, begin writing. Don’t worry about sentence structure or spelling. Just write and don’t stop until you have fully described it. Then, go back and re-read what you wrote and pull things from that piece of writing that you think will be suitable for the paper. Sometimes, your best work comes out of the moments when you let everything else disappear and simply focus on writing without worrying about grammar and spelling. Things to Remember You need an introduction with a motivator and thesis statement You should have a conclusion, which successfully wraps up the essay. Make sure you have three body paragraphs. This is where the bulk of your describing will take place. Follow the five steps of the writing process as we discussed. What is most important? In a descriptive essay, the words you choose to use are the most important part. Have you ever encountered a person who just keeps rambling on and on with no end in sight? If you have, you might have wondered if he/she would ever run out of words to say. Unfortunately, that will remain a dream for all of us. Today, more than 750 million people use the English language. The average educated person knows about 20,000 words and uses about 2,000 words in a week. It is estimated that there are more than 500,000 words in the English language! When you write, you want to try and use the most unique words available. You don’t want to use the same words over and over again! Be creative! With over 500,000 words in the English language, there is absolutely no reason to continue using the same ones in each essay you write. Experiment with new words…..expand your vocabulary.