English Writing Tips and Tricks (Part One)

In this article, I am going to teach you some great English writing tips. These tips are for both academic writing and non-academic writing. Okay, So it’s for writing in general.This article is going to be in two parts, because I have so many English Writing Tips, so I’m going to give five tips in this article, and 5 tips in the next article. OK, let’s get started.

There are so many different ways, or so many different types of writing we do in our lives; we write emails, we write essays, if we’re a student, we might write a Facebook post, or we might write a resume, or cover letter. So it’s very important to develop your writing skills because you will be writing throughout your life a lot. So let’s look at my first English writing tip.

(1)Genre/Type of Writing

My first English writing is: it’s very important to think about the genre of what your writing. “Genre” is a very fancy word that pretty much means type. So, a genre of writing might be an essay, or it might be a cover letter, or an email, or a tweet. These are all different genres, and each one of these has a different expectation on what you should include and how you should write it.

So it’s very important, first step is: Know the genre or know the type and know what is expected of you. Also important in this is knowing your audience, or thinking about your audience. So, for example, if you write an email, the language you’re going to use and the way you’re going to write will be different if you write an email to your friend versus an email to your boss. So it’s important to think about: “who are you writing to?” because this is going to help you decide what to write and how to write it.

Same with, you know, if you are on Twitter and you write a tweet or on Facebook a Facebook post you know it’s important to think about your audience. You know, are you writing this post for friends to see, or is this a post that your boss might see, or members of the public? you know, and that could be a problem. So it’s important to think about, especially with this and on other social media, too audience who will see this and what will they think about it, and what are their expectations? You know some people work for companies where they’re responsible for social media, so it’s important, too, the type of wording they use when the writing on Facebook.If you work at a company and you’re writing for your company, it’s going to be different than if you’re writing for your friends.

Same with an essay, an essay has a certain structure, you know, it’s supposed to be a certain amount of pages, and has a certain organization to it, and so knowing what’s expected of you when you write an essay will help you because it’s going to be very different than a Facebook post.

Same with in business, business reports. Understanding the format of a business report is important as this is something you’re going to be writing, and thinking about your audience.

Same with executive summaries, which is a type of things business people write. If you’re not in business you might not ever write one of these, but if you are in business you need to realize that audience is important because professionals are going to be reading this, and these people are busy, so, you know, knowing your audience and knowing what is expected of you is the very first step to good writing.

(2) Length Expectations

Let’s look at some other English writing tips. Okay, so we’ve talked about genre or the type of writing you’re doing and part of this is knowing the expectations for how long what you write should be. Okay? So you want to know a bit about length expectations before you start writing.

This is really important, especially in University where you often have a number of pages you’re allowed to write. It’s important, you know, in the workplace because sometimes, you know, you can’t write a lot. And it’s important, on Twitter because you have a certain number of characters you can use. So length is very important because that’s going to help you decide what to include in your writing.

Okey,so let’s look at this a bit more. When I was younger I used to think long meaning a lot of writing, was always better, but this is not the case. You know, the more you write, maybe you can include more detail, but a lot of the times, the person or your audience who’s reading what you write does not have a lot of time, and so they don’t want to read long pieces of work. So it’s important to know expectations. So for example, I have for the word “short” and “long”, and so this is kind of like a scale. If you write a tweet it’s going to be something short; a Facebook post might be a little bit longer, a paragraph, you might write something like five sentences if I’m in school you have to write a paragraph on something; an email might be a little bit longer than this; a cover letter you might use a full-page; a resume maybe you might use two pages but nothing more; and then you might write an essay which might be 5 Pages, 10 pages, depending; and then maybe a report which might be 50 pages, who knows? depending on what’s expected. So my main point here is that different types of writing have different expectations with length, and it’s really important to follow those expectations. For students who are reading the TOEFL or the IELTS, you only can use a certain number of words, so this is very important for you to know and to really think about. How are you going to get your message across using the right amount of words?

This is a keyword we often talked about in good writing, and that’s “concise”. So when you are concise, it means you say something with as few words as possible, but still getting the meaning across. So you are communicating your idea, but you’re doing it in a short way, as short as you can while still keeping the idea there. So, in different cultures you have different rules about this. In some cultures longer is better. In English-speaking cultures usually we really want to get to the point, so we want to communicate our idea, but we want it to be in a concise way, so using our words very carefully, so we don’t use too many words. So the main point here: Know how long something your writing should be, and paying attention to this when you write.


Now let’s look at my next English writing tip. Okay, so my third Point might be one of the most important points in this lesson, and that is: When you write something, very important to plan or to think about what you will say before you write it. This is something a lot of people don’t do, because they’re busy, they feel like they don’t have a lot of time, or they just don’t have any ideas. And the thing is, though, that this will really help improve your writing. And it doesn’t matter what your writing; planning out an email can be important, just like planning out an essay can be important. So let’s think about some ways we can plan out what we want to write.

There are different ways to do this. Some people like to make a plan by brainstorming. So for example, imagine you were writing a paragraph about cats, so you might have your subject or your key ideas here, and then you might think about it: “Okay, what’s something about cat? they make great pets”. and then you might write some stuff about that. Maybe they’re quiet, so they make a good pet. They’re cheap, and so the thing is just getting out your ideas. And then you can organize your ideas better. Or maybe, you know, you’re thinking: “Okay, cats, they eat food. what kind of food do they eat?”

So you can do the same thing with reports. You can think about: “Okay, what’s the main ideas that I need to talk about in this report?” where you just kind of brainstorm in advance. I usually do that when I write reports, and I find a very helpful actually. just to get my ideas down on paper, and then I organize them.

So this is one method. Another thing you can do is give me just write down everything, just like this, with a dash. So for example, if I was writing about cats in a paragraph, I might just start thinking… writing anything I think: “quiet, cute, Grumpy Cat,” Okay? and I might just write down all the ideas I have. Now, of course, you’re probably not writing an essay or a paragraph on cats, you’re probably writing something very different, but the idea is the same. Okay, that idea being it’s important to plan, and these are different great ways to get out your ideas, and to think about them before you actually write. Sometimes if you’re writing an essay you might think in advance about your thesis or what you’re the in the main argument of your essay is going to be. So, for example, cats are better than dogs. maybe that’s something I want to argue in an essay. I might organized based on ideas, I might write, you know, my first main idea: “They’re cleaner”, and then I might put some details about that. My second main idea is that they’re great for apartments, and then I might write some examples or some reasons why. So my main point is all of these can work. Find what helps you in terms of planning. There’s many different ways to plan what you’re going to write but the most important thing is to plan, and to take some time to think about what you want to say in advance, because it will really help your writing. And it’s very obvious when somebody hasn’t planned what they’re going to write, because everything’s disorganized and it’s hard to follow. Planning makes it easier for the audience to understand you.

(4) Formal and Informal

Now let’s look at another tip for how to write better. Okay, so remember I said that it’s very important to think about the type of writing you’re doing and your audience or who’s going to read it? One of the reasons why this is important is because I’m depending on the type of writing, you’re going to write either in a formal way or an informal way. Okay, And I’ll explain why this is important to know and how it affects your writing.

So first let’s talk about what that means. Well, when you write something formally, this means that we choose certain words and certain types of sentences, and we write a certain way, and we write this way because our audience or the people who are going to read this are usually people from work so we want to be professional. so we write formally when we’re being professional. We might write this way to strangers or customers. If we work somewhere and we need to write an email, we might use this type of language, formal language. And we also use formal language in high school, in University, in college when we’re writing for an assignment or for our homework, or something that our teacher or Professor will read. So we use formal writing mailny in work settings and in academic or School settings.

Now, this is different from informal writing. Informal writing is the type of writing you will be doing with your friends, so maybe for example a text message, that’s informal; you might use this type of writing when you’re talking to children or writing something for children; and also on social media, so if you write a tweet or a Facebook post, usually you’ll be using informal language; and also with your family, too, you usually use informal language.

So, I have here some examples of genres or types of writing that you might use the formal version or the informal version. So under formal we have essays, if you do that at University or high school, it would be formal; a cover letter, if you want to get a job and you have to write a cover letter then this is going to be formal language you use; a report, if you work at a company and you have to write reports, you’ll be using formal language; or emails to customers you’ll be using formal language. And there’s a lot more, this is just some examples.

For informal, if you write a postcard to your family you’ll be using informal language; a text message would be informal; an email to your friend, you would use informal language; or maybe a birthday card. OK it’s so it’s important to think in advance what kind of language you’re going to use.

Okay? so how can we make something formal or informal with our language? There’s a couple of ways to do this. The first thing you need to think about is the words you’re going to use, or your vocabulary. So, different words either fit into the formal category or informal category. So, for example, if we’re talking about a lot of something and we want to be informal, we might use the word “Lots”. So this is an example of an informal word “lots”.we’d use with our friends. If we want to be a bit more formal, we’re writing you know what at the University level, we might use the word “many”; this word is formal, whereas “lots” is more informal.

Cheers(informal) vs regards

Sorry(informal) vs appologize

It’s very important when you’re choosing your words, because a lot of words fit either into formal category or informal category, and some words fit into both. It’s good to know the level of formality for the words you’re using. Now, if you’re having a lot of trouble with this in your thinking: “how am I going to know if the word is formal or informal?” There’s a quick tip you can try; it doesn’t always work, but in general, longer words in English are often more formal. It’s not always the case, but just if you really don’t know, it’s a good way to guess. And usually if they come from Latin, So for anyone who’s watching who’s from France, from Spain, or South America, or Italy, or who speaks a latin-based language, if you have a word that similar in your language, it probably is a formal word in English, or it’s probably something you can use in a formal setting. Okay, So usually the shorter words are the more informal words.

These are words we use informally.

slang:it is words we use wiht our friends, words like “cool”

swear words:

exaggeration words:Very realy totall

Text words:lol b4 LMAO(lauth my ass off)

(5) Variety

Okay so we’ve covered about formal and informal writing. My last English writing tip for this article is about the importance of using Variety in what your writing.

What do you mean by variety?

Well, sometimes when people write they have certain words that they use again and again and again, and so there’s not a lot of variety in their choice of words. Or you might have somebody else who uses the same sentence structure; maybe they learn the present perfect and they love the present perfect because it took them forever to learn it, so now that use the present perfect in each sentence. So this is not good because we really want variety and what we write, because we want it to be interesting. If you use something too much, it makes what your writing look boring.

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