Whenever you write an essay, the obvious thing to do first is to write down in any order things that may strike you. Different people will associate the topic with different things, but the most important thing is to put it down in black and white before you. Surprisingly it will be very easy to write once you have phrases or words with which to work with.
For instance if you are asked to describe a day in summer, to some it may be the heat which is dominant while it is others a time to get away and enjoy themselves. Depending on the train of thought and the associations which summer brings, the essay forms itself.
One way to tackle a descriptive essay is to use vivid language which clearly brings out the principal features, another way would be to compare it with something else while others would merely allow their senses to come into play. While writing a descriptive essay, use time effectively to show change or evolution. Allow for a free play of emotions and feelings, for this adds to the essence of the essay.
Adjectives and verbs are of primary importance as writers often resort to them to convey their state of mind on the topic. The writer has to be creatively suggestive in order to convert the descriptive essay into something exciting and out of the ordinary. This holds the attention of the reader and urges him to continue reading. Allow the reader to relate and feel the intensity by evoking images.
Organization is a very important tool for effective descriptive essay writing. There should be more than one paragraph and a general pattern should be developed before becoming specific. Remember, such essays do not merely indicate statistical data like a scientific paper or need not consist of facts.
Let your imagination soar and throw in a few metaphors and similes for good measure. Do not however go overboard with such description. The rules are just guidelines but do allow contouring.
Having said that it is important to first understand the purpose of the essay and the readers who are being targeted. Researching is an absolute must, the more material you have, the better your essay will be. Just as a sketch acts as a skeleton for a painting, so too an outline is a must for a descriptive essay. Using the outline, fill in the vast spaces and rewrite as many times you can. Often it is felt, that this is the best that you can do. Read it aloud to yourself and you will find that a first written draft augurs a lot of improvement. The five senses have a major role to play.
For example, describing the mansion of your dreams would call for a description of how the dream mansion actually is visualized. Conjure up an image of the smells and sounds associated with the garden or the summerhouse. The sense of touch comes into play when you describe the texture of the hangings, the wall, the floor, or the feel of books in the library. By using the five senses, the descriptive essay begins to have feeling and depth and a sense of belonging.
Use concrete ideas but mix them up with abstract ones and the result is an essay that is alive and full of vitality, refusing to be subdued. It bursts at its seams as if urging the reader to get it all in one go. Be natural and refreshing and avoid clichés even at the expense of being extravagant. There is nothing like writing an essay this way and there is nothing like reading it.~ author M. Doraiswami.