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What Is A Descriptive Narrative Essay: A Basic Manual For Dummies


When it comes to writing, most people say that all writing is persuasive. However, when you are learning to write, you will be assigned narrative, descriptive, and informational projects. All of these essays have generally the same structure, but with differing content. One of the more creative essay styles is the combination descriptive narrative essay. Here is a quick manual to help you write a descriptive narrative paper:

  • What is a descriptive narrative? This type of paper tells a story in a descriptive fashion. Like all narrative papers, the paper should share a moment in time and what was learned from it. This type of narrative does not just tell a story, but it does it by providing descriptive details. It should include details that invoke the senses, so the readers can truly relate to the event.
  • How should you write this paper? It is important to use vivid details, rather than words that tell. When you write this paper, you should keep in mind that your reader was not there. So, instead of telling what happened, you need to clearly show it with your word choice. It is best to use vivid verbs instead of relying on adjective and adverbs. Vivid verbs create action and they give the reader something to imagine. Instead of using “to be” in your sentences, imagine what the reader will get to experience when you use verbs like rambling, breathing, coloring, etc.
  • Do you need a thesis statement? Every paper needs to have a thesis statement, even narratives. The point of a narrative is to show what was learned from the experience, so the thesis will include what was learned. You will then share the story and show how the event affected you. You will need to write an introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion, just like every other essay that you have written. The thesis will go in the same place, at the end of the introductory paragraph.
  • Should this be like a story? There is a difference between a narrative essay and an actual story. While the narrative essay does explain a story, it does not typically use dialogue or narration like a story does. You will explain what happens, but with reflection that refers back to the thesis. Even though you can use a first-person “I” in a narrative essay, the paper will not have the same narration style as a story has.


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