What are the differences between narrative and descriptive writing? While writing either what should we keep in mind?
migrated from english.stackexchange.com Aug 29 '11 at 18:15
Narrative writing tells a story or part of a story.
Descriptive writing vividly portrays a person, place, or thing in such a way that the reader can visualize the topic and enter into the writer’s experience.
So in narrative writing, the writer is perfectly capable of telling you the plot of the story, while in descriptive writing there does not have to be a plot, but something has to become very easy for the reader to visualize.
Let's look at the Lord of the Rings. The way J.R.R. Tolkien describes a hobbit is very descriptive, and the reason the movies were so successful was not only because the story was told correctly (the book being narrative writing also), but because the readers did not have to come up with their own imagination of a hobbit (or other figures, places, and such). They were described in detail, giving everybody a very precise framework of imagination to work from. Therefore everybody could relate to and agree upon the characters and the make-up of the artists.