40 Writing Topics: Description

Writing Suggestions for a Descriptive Paragraph, Essay, or Speech

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Writers use descriptive details to help their readers see, hear, taste, smell, feel, and understand particular aspects or qualities of a subject. For instance, your memory of a favorite place you visited as a child would make a great subject. Joerg Dirmeitis / EyeEm / Getty Images
If you want to be a successful writer, you must be able to describe [your subject], and in a way that will cause your reader to prickle with recognition. . . . Thin description leaves the reader feeling bewildered and nearsighted. Overdescription buries him or her in details and images. The trick is to find a happy medium.
(Stephen King, On Writing, 2000)

Descriptive writing calls for close attention to factual and sensory details: show, don't tell.

Whether your subject is as small as a strawberry or as large as a fruit farm, you should begin by observing your subject closely and deciding which details are most significant.  

To get you started, here are 40 topic suggestions for a descriptive paragraph, essay, or speech. These suggestions should help you discover a subject that especially interests you.

40 Topic Suggestions: Description

  1. a waiting room
  2. a basketball, baseball glove, or tennis racket
  3. a smartphone
  4. a treasured belonging
  5. a laptop computer
  6. a favorite restaurant
  7. your dream house
  8. your ideal roommate
  9. a closet
  10. your memory of a place that you visited as a child
  11. a locker
  12. an accident scene
  13. a city bus or subway train
  14. an unusual room
  15. a child's secret hiding place
  16. a bowl of fruit
  17. an item left too long in your refrigerator
  18. backstage during a play or a concert
  19. a vase of flowers
  20. a rest room in a service station
  21. a street that leads to your home or school
  22. your favorite food
  1. the inside of a spaceship
  2. the scene at a concert or athletic event
  3. an art exhibit
  4. an ideal apartment
  5. your old neighborhood
  6. a small town cemetery
  7. a pizza
  8. a pet
  9. a photograph
  10. a hospital emergency room
  11. a particular friend or family member
  12. a painting
  13. a storefront window
  14. an inspiring view
  15. a work table
  16. a character from a book, movie, or television program
  1. a refrigerator or washing machine
  2. a Halloween costume


Model Paragraphs and Essays

Also see: 400 Writing Topics