Narrative And Descriptive Essay: What Are The Differences? - UK Essay Writers Blog

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Narrative And Descriptive Essay: What Are The Differences?

Is essay writing your next assignment? Are you looking for many ways in which essays can be written so that you can decide which style will fit the content of your essay best? The essays that students are usually assigned are one of these types; exposition, argument, description and narration. Every essay, no matter which type, is aiming to elaborate on the idea that is being discovered. But narrative essays tell the tale of the thought that is being explored while descriptive essays paint a word picture of the person, thing, place or event for the reader.

Narrative Essays: Narration is personal telling of the event or matter under discussion that is done in the first person and is a deliberate explanation of the topic by the person writing the essay. Narrative essays are by default storytelling. They are a way for the writer to explore the topic that is being discussed and involves personal experiences and opinions on the matter heavily. For example, your first day at school, the day you went to the mall and they day your pet died are all valid topics of discussion in narrative essays. But they don’t necessarily have to be a personal experience. Any topic, if discussed in first person and with heavy personal perspective, becomes a narrative essay.

Descriptive Essays: These essays are, simply out, word pictures painted by the writer. You are describing the event, your experience, the object or the moment in great detail with an elaborate focus on three dimensional elaboration of the topic under discussion. These are hard to develop characteristics; you have to explain the sensory, auditory, olfactory and somatosensory systems in great detail. Your writing will generate the experience for your reader.


Both follow the most basic essay format with an introduction, main body and a conclusion. The main body will have three sections, comprise of three main points that will be elaborated in the essay. This, as the standard essay format, will be followed by both types of essays. Both have thesis statements and you need to lace thesis statements in the beginning of both. It feels unnatural when you are writing a narrative essay but you will have a thesis statement naturally placed in the beginning of the narration and you will have to build your essay around it in an unassuming manner.


The most basic difference is that narrative essays are the first person narration and all other types do not involve first person narration. A narrative essay is always expressive in nature while all other types are not. Narrative essays vary from other types of essays in many simple ways. Narrative essays are active in nature while descriptive essays are not. Narrative essays will focus on personal expression of opinion while descriptive essays will focus on expressing the content as an experience for the audience.

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