Descriptive and Narrative Essay Styles - Research Prospect

Descriptive and Narrative Essay Styles

Published by at August 17th, 2021 , Revised On September 21, 2021

Argumentative essays are the most common type of essays, but you could be asked to write a descriptive or narrative essay by your tutor.

These two types of essays are different from argumentative essays, as they permit the writer to express the content in a natural yet comprehensive manner. Hence, readers can grasp the exact concept without any confusion.

Argumentative essays, as the name itself suggests, are more about arguments and providing counter-arguments. On the contrary, descriptive and narrative essays can be used to win an argument by appealing to the audience’s emotions or reader.

This tact can be really helpful, particularly when starting the personal statement for admission to a college or university.


Descriptive and narrative essays are structured so that a deliberate effort is made in portraying a specific meaning of a certain thing to drive the reader’s perception, usually in a style that alters the meaning of something that one perceives.

Difference between Descriptive and Narrative Essay

In this article, we will come to know the characteristics of descriptive as well as narrative essays. Let’s discuss these below:

Descriptive Essays

Descriptive essays need to share experiences with the reader so that the same feeling can be dispatched to them. You should express the subject-object relationship so that the readers feel so close to the experience as if they have witnessed it by themselves.

Tips for Writing Descriptive Essays

Find Appropriate Words

Writers with good essay writing skills pay attention to each word they write in an essay. They want to make sure the words demonstrate the same meanings to the reader with which they had intended to write them.

To make their writing more understandable, many writers prefer to use sensual language (related to the senses) in their essays over cerebral language (related to the intellect).

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Design the Sentence Structure Carefully

The structure of the sentence depends on its length. Keeping your sentences too short can make your writing appear unsophisticated, and your ideas seem disconnected. On the other hand, writing very long sentences consistently despite having properly placed transitions could make the essay lose its focus.

The best way to cut down a long sentence is to figure out your main points. The length of sentences in an essay creates the essay’s overall mood, which, if not paid necessary attention, can divert the reader’s attention.

What is the Difference between Essays and Reports?

If you are going to explain a certain experience, it would be helpful for the readers to provide sufficient information regarding the experience. You can share either your imagination of experience or actually share the experience.

If you have made notes of that certain event, it will allow you to gather and present your statement more compactly.

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Narrative Essays

Narrative essays usually narrate a course of events in the form of a story. The story may be in the form of a fictional character of a young lad or a renowned author expressing his thoughts in one of his masterpieces.

The most remarkable characteristic that differentiates a narrative essay from other types of essays is that a narrative essay discusses an event or series of events that are experienced by a single individual. On the contrary, other types of essays explore a topic based on some analysis or facts.

If we look at the difference between a descriptive and narrative essay, we will observe that the narrative essay focuses on a series of events. In contrast, a descriptive essay, on the contrary, expresses a single event or moment.

To put it in simple words, we can relate narrative essays to a movie where a long story is narrated by the author and descriptive essays to a single picture/snap, which tells a story.

Tips for Writing Narrative Essays

Make an Outline for Your Narrative Essay

It is recommended to plan your writing, as the idea of narrative essays is to communicate to your readers about the subject clearly. To make a better sentence structure for your narrative essay, you can use foreshadowing and past events.

Explain the Narrator as a Character

If you want to play the role of the narrator yourself, you need to pick the character traits you can share as a narrator. A compact narrative essay will explain the narrator’s identity, which will consequently have a deep impact on the story and its focus.

Readers won’t get to know the narration’s main theme unless they get to know about the narrator. Let’s understand this by an example. If the narrator is not reliable or trustworthy, you can let him narrate his story in his own voice and can indirectly raise questions on the approach.

In contrast to this, you can use a reliable narrator and support the argument by providing evidence and opinions that support the narrator’s arguments.

Not Sure How to Start an Essay?

To conclude, a narrative essay is all about narrating a story, while the idea of the descriptive essay is to describe something in a way that the reader should perfectly perceive it for himself. Essayists find it challenging to narrowly focus in a narrative essay, while a descriptive essay is difficult in terms of organization.

How Can Research Prospect Help?

Struggling with your descriptive or narrative essay assignment? Looming deadlines? Whether you need help with a narrative or descriptive essay, Research Prospect essayists can write an essay that will exceed your expectations.

If you would like to review our samples before placing an order, please click on the below “Essay Sample Button.” Alternatively, you might want to look at our custom essay writing service designed to help students achieve the grade they desire.

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