Descriptive Writing Information Sheet
Good descriptive writing should try and recreate an experience or event as accurately as possible. In order to do this you should use: - information from all five senses - adjectives and adverbs - similes and metaphors
Sight Shape Size Colour
For each of the senses there are many things to write about here are some examples: Hearing Pitch Volume Tone Touch Texture Temperature Weight Taste Sour Bitter Texture Temperature Smell Good/Bad Power Identifiable?
For example in your handout Joseph ‘Eddie’ McCann says: “There's a certain smell to hot blood, believe me, I smelled it that day, and it's something I'll never forget.” He doesn’t tell us what this smell is like but in your writing you should try to: e.g. The nauseating stench of hot blood fills the air.
Adjectives describe nouns. A noun is a naming word – it names a person, place, idea, object or animal: e.g. The soldiers storm the beach. Adding adjectives makes it more descriptive: e.g. The exhausted soldiers storm the blood-soaked beach.
Adverbs describe how a verb happens. A verb is an action word – it shows what is happening in a sentence. e.g. The soldiers storm the beach. Adding adverbs describes how they stormed the beach e.g. The soldiers hurriedly storm the beach.
N.B. If you use too many adjectives and adverbs your writing will sound flowery and overwritten. You should choose adjectives and adverbs very carefully and use them sparingly for greatest impact.
A simile is a comparison which uses the words ‘like’ or ‘as’. e.g. The screams are as loud as the guns. OR The tanks sink like rocks.
A metaphor is a comparison which states one thing IS another. e.g. The waves throw the soldiers onto the beach. OR The sand grabs at the legs of the soldiers. Waves can’t really throw and sand can’t really grab but we can use these ideas as metaphors to fully describe how it felt to be in the water or on the beach.