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Types of Essays

1. Narrative Essays
As the name suggests, it is the narration of a story or an event that has
This could be a real or an imaginary event, like:
social function,
street incident,
a journey or
a natural disaster.
Soccer fans in a tightly packed stadium, where a closely contested match is in
progress. An assessment.

1.Keep to the chronological order in which the event happened
2.However special emphasis can be created by using a flashbacks before
coming to the present
3.Arrest the attention of the reader by beginning with a bang if the situation
4.Create the right atmosphere by dwelling on some details of pIace time and
5.Introduce the characters with a brief character sketch
6.Use dialogues to make it lively interesting and also to break monotony
7.Select details on which you require to lay more emphasis.
For example: if you have to write on a school picnic, the major part of
the composition should be about what happened at the picnic
Do not waste time on peripheral details like how you got up, or what
dress you put on etc.

8. Focus on the topic of the narrative throughout the composition:
An underlying idea should give the narrative a sense of unity.
Eg: if you are to write on a day when everything went wrong, it would be
erroneous to dwell on things which went right that day.

2 Descriptive Essays
Essays of this type describe some place, person or thing ,which could be
real or imaginary
The objective is to convey to the reader a vivid and realistic account of
what you are visualising.
Just as a painter uses colours to recreate a scene, you have to use
appropriate words presented in a beautiful style, for the same purpose.
Typical examples of such essays are:
Character sketches of people
Description of an event, festival or a program

Give an interesting and realistic description of yourself - your appearance,
your philosophy of life, your likes and dislikes, your attitude to elders equals
and juniors, your religious beliefs and conviction.

Dwell on the significant details of the place like:
the surroundings,
the weather,
time etc.
Use all your five senses, namely:
your sense of sight,
touch and
This shall add depth to your composition and also help in the vivid
picturization of the subject.

Start with the general and proceed to the specific detail.
It is important to be selective.
for example in describing a man:
it is not necessary to dwell on every physical attribute like his eyes, ears
nose, mouth, face, colour height etc
It would be more apt to dwell on his unique physical attributes, like his
colour, height, shape, gait or say his mannerism
Be precise and avoid using vague adjectives like, good, excellent. etc.
Use the precise words
For example: instead of saying She had good hair, it would be more
expressive to say: she had thick black curly hair, that hung down up to
her shoulders.

Use comparison, simile and metaphors for making the details distinct.
Like instead of describing a room of size 20 ft. by 35 ft., you can say the
room the size of an auditorium.
It is important to be imaginative and original in your presentation.

3. Argumentative Essays
These are essays that are argumentative or debatable in nature, where the
writer arrives at a conclusion by logical reasoning.
This would require consideration of various aspects of the subject
The objective is to convince the reader to the writers point of view of the
Strong and weak points of both sides of the arguments need to be
This helps in presenting ones views either for or against the subject
We need to highlight the strong points and attack the weak points of the
The cause of unhappiness in life is greed Write for or against.

3. Argumentative Essays
Jot down all the points under the heads for or against the subject.
Decide whether you are going to write for or against the subject matter,
if so specified in the question .
In case you are to give both the advantages and disadvantages, then give
both the aspects of the subject.
In the introduction, begin with a brief lead into the subject, by stating its
importance, relevance etc.
In the body of the composition, refute youre the opposite argument, point
by point.
This may be supplemented by practical real life examples, historical facts,
or statistical data, to substantiate your point more convincingly.
Conclude with your well thought out personal view, based on a clear

4 Topical or Reflective Essays

Essays of this type are reflective, or thoughts on some topic, which are of an
abstract nature
For example, topics based on:
social, political, or domestic issues like education, poverty, democracy etc.
Qualities or habits like friendship, patriotism, disciple, love etc.
Example: Love
1. In the introduction, begin by explaining or defining the subject and its
2. Justify your point of view by historical, personal, social, religious and
psychological factors.
3. Conclude by putting forth your balanced point of view.

5. Expository Essays
Essays of this type are an exposition, or an explanation of subjects like how
things work.
It is an explanation of the operating process that is in the form of instructions.
They require a logical step-by-step approach of presentation.
Examples of such essays could be
How to organise a birthday party?
How to prepare a particular dish?
Relate how the reading and study of literature has enriched and refined you.

6. The Short Story

This is difficult to attempt in the 45 minutes available, unless one has very
good command on the language
Also needed is the ability to weave a unique plot, having no resemblance to a
story encountered elsewhere.
Write an original short story based on these words: Parting in such sweet

6. The Short Story

Build a story around the theme or title if given.
In case you have to begin or end your story with a particular sentence, evolve
a theme or plot so that the sentence fits naturally and does not appear to be
artificially imposed.
Write the story in the third person,
Writing in the first person is more difficult (unless specifically instructed as in
case of composition of reflective or introspective nature).
Character sketch of the main protagonist (central character)
Create the atmosphere that relates to the story, for example a mystery story
could dwell on creaking doors, rattling windows, or piercing cry to heighten
the tension etc.
A gradual builds up to the climax and a surprise ending, which stimulates the
readers mind.