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How can I write a descriptive piece with the title (The Approach) It is not supposed to...

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Beth_J | Student, Grade 8

Posted October 22, 2013 at 4:22 PM via web

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How can I write a descriptive piece with the title (The Approach)


It is not supposed to be more than 1000 words but I am lost for ideas. I do not want to do a typical meeting or someone simply walking up to something, but more of a deeper meaning sort of thing. I was wondering how I could start it and ideas for the main "storyline" of it.

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted October 23, 2013 at 10:16 AM (Answer #1)

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Perhaps, the "approach" may not be a physical movement, but a perceptive method or interpretation. That is, the word approach is denoted as one's method of examination or interpretation as in, for instance, an approach to solving a problem or a conflicting situation, or an approach to understanding something. 

One way in which the writer can describe such an approach is by writing about a reciprocal experience such as a relationship with another which has some problems. Then, one of the two tries a method or devises a plan to get the other to view things from a different perspective and, thus, resolve the conflicts. Another way that the writer can compose a descriptive piece is by creating an approach made by the imagination. For instance, if a young man walks past stores on the way to his place of work, maybe one day a painting in an art gallery's window happens to catch his eye, but he does not give it much thought after it is out of his sight. However, the next day he again glances at the painting as he passes, and this time he notices something different about the painting, or he sees something new. He ponders this experience a little longer after he passes. On the following day, he rushes because he is late and does not look at the painting; however, the following day, he decides to take some time to examine this painting that is beginning to intrigue him.

Each day, then, the young man eagerly anticipates getting off the commuter train and approaching the painting that depicts people interacting in some fashion (the writer can describe something like Renoir's Luncheon of the Boating Party--see this painting on the internet). Now, when he looks at the familiar painting, he turns a different way. After work, he examines this painting in the early evening light and the people and scene change somewhat. This experience causes the young man to realize that perceptions can change depending upon the circumstances. So, when he goes out with his girlfriend on the week-end, he takes a "new" look at her and sees some qualities he has not noticed before. Naturally, his girlfriend takes notice of his observing and listening having increased and asks him about his behavior. He replies, "Have you ever looked at a painting in different lights? I've learned that there really are dimensions to the imagination and to understanding. You know, we should be more receptive to new insights. What do you think?" etc. etc.

Another idea involves someone's approach to life. Perhaps, a description of how a person approaches life after a serious illness or injury could generate an interesting composition. Recently, for example, there was a human interest story in the news about one of the victim's of the Boston terrorist bombing who lost one leg below her knee. "I will dance again" this young woman has vowed. The dancer received her prosthetic not long ago and is now in therapy.

Generating ideas for writing are easier if the writer will read magazines, glance through periodicals and watch the news. Something will surely trigger an idea. Good luck!

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