How to write an informal essay
An informal essay is quite different from other types of essays. In an informal essay, you’re writing as if you are talking to a friend. You do not need to engage in a strict academic writing process, but you should still avoid sloppiness.
- In a formal essay, you expresses your ideas quietly behind the words.
- In an informal essay, you talk to the reader in a conversational manner.
Formal and informal essays
In order to understand the difference between a formal and informal essay more clearly, let’s look at the table below.
|Characteristic||Informal Essay||Formal Essay|
The third-person pronoun
The writer's own life and daily activities
Historical experiences, literature, etc.
Personal and subjective
General and objective
Technical words, no jargons
Entertainment, thought expression
Evidence, theories, logical assessment
Now that we know the general rules and definitions of an informal essay, let’s continue with the steps to write a great one.
Step 1: Choose an informal essay topic
This is generally the first step of any essay writing process unless you are pre-assigned a topic already. An informal essay gives you a great opportunity in this step; you can write an informal essay on almost any topic. Here are some tips for you.
Informal essay topic tips
When choosing a topic:Create a list of all the things about which you have a clear opinion. This list could include anything from your favorite movie, to your theories on life in space.
Put the list away for an hour after you’ve created it. Return to it later. Most probably, one topic will stand out to you more. Then, you can write about that topic. For this how-to guide, we are choosing the topic “why I stopped eating meat”.
Step 2: Create an outline
An informal essay does not need to follow a strict structure. However, it should still be coherent. Therefore, your outline does not need to be strict either. Just create one to help organize your thoughts.
Example of an informal essay outline
- Hook sentence
- Personal insights
- Thesis statement
- Body paragraph 1
- Opening sentence
- Referring to reader
- Body paragraph 2
- Personal touch
- Your stance
- Address to the reader
- Address to the reader
- Personal development and detail
- Concluding sentence
Informal essay outline best practices
Step 3: Write an introduction
Now, you start the actual writing process. In the introduction of an informal essay, you can basically follow the traditional introduction guide.
Informal essay introduction example
It all started with a basic order of chicken in my university cafeteria. I ate the chicken, then thought to myself, “There was an animal in my plate just a few minutes ago.” Hook: Personal introduction that intrigues the reader and has a provocative stance. This thought planted the idea of giving up meat in my brain that day. Afterward, my further research on the topic made it impossible for me to continue eating meat. Personal insights: Overview of the journey towards the idea supported in the essay- it’s clear that the stance is personal. In my journey towards vegetarianism, mainly the ethical and health aspects of consuming meat made me decide to make the transition. Thesis Statement: Revealing the points that will be discussed in the paper. Pay attention to words such as “my” and “I”.
Informal essay introduction best practices
Before writing an introduction, you must first create an idea, identify a purpose, and collect information for the project. The introduction also should contain a thesis statement.
Remember this type of essay is characterized by the inclusion of the writer’s viewpoint on the chosen topic, so be sure to declare your stance clearly.
Step 4: Body paragraphs
Informal essay paragraphs example
One of the most defining forces for me to give up eating meat was the ethical side. Opening sentence: Personal point of view which still makes a stance. We think meat consumption is innocent. However, once we come to the realization that what is on our plate is not merely meat but an animal that was once alive, I am sure we will start to look at things differently. Thoughts: Reveals personal thoughts with first-person pronouns. If you have a pet, I am sure that you love them endlessly. However, we tend to think that the animals we choose to eat are different from our pets, but they are not. Referring to reader: Connects with the reader by addressing them. This adds to the sincerity of the essay.
My cat played a huge role in my decision to go vegetarian. Personal touch: The writer talks about a specific aspect of their life, making the essay more personal. I love her to death, and I thought that other animals deserve to live just as much as she does. Thoughts: Inclusion of personal thoughts and casual language. My friends might hate me now because they have to find a restaurant with meatless options whenever they go out with me. Still, I think I would be a hypocrite if I fed and looked after my cat at home, then went out and ate another animal. Stance: Even though the structure is not formal, the essay still presents a firm stance on the subject. Take this as a food for thought. Address: Directly addressing to the reader. This detail makes the essay feel like sitting down and conversing with a friend.
Tips for informal essay paragraphs
Important tipDo not overdo idioms, jargon, and phrasal verbs. It is still an essay, after all.
Step 5: Write a conclusion
In the conclusion paragraph, you will need to summarize your main points and make a clear final comment.
Informal essay conclusion example
I think my points could be enough for everyone to at least consider giving up meat. As I have said, ethically, there is not an understandable way for us to continue eating animals. Referral: Mention the previous parts of the essay. Especially if you love animals, I invite you to take a moment and think about this. Address: Addressing the reader, making the essay more contributive and effective. Additionally, as I have stated, vegetarianism has done more for me physically than puberty ever did. Personal development: A very personal touch to ease the reader and make the essay easier to read. It made me experience a glow-up that everyone thought to be amazing. Casual vocabulary: “Glow up” is a casual word that is frequently used by young people. However, it is also a word that professors will understand. This is because since I eat cleaner now that I have given up meat, I feel much better, and this shows its effects on my appearance. Personal detail: The writer talks about their appearance, something you can never see in a formal essay. Even if you do not care about animals, I don’t get it, but okay, I advise you to stop eating meat for your own benefit and the greater good of animals. Concluding sentence: Again, addressing the reader and using casual language to create a deeper bond. Also, a final comment that shows the writer’s determination on the subject.
Informal essay conclusion tips
5-Paragraph Informal Essay Example
Game of Thrones: A World of Fantasy and Intrigue
Winter is coming, and with it comes the epic tale of Game of Thrones. George R.R. Martin’s masterpiece, adapted for television, has taken the world by storm with its gripping plotlines and unique characters. Hook sentence: Grab the reader's attention With its detailed world-building, remarkable acting, and intense violence, Game of Thrones has left a lasting impression on fans worldwide. Background: Game of Thrones as a cultural phenomenon This essay will explore why Game of Thrones is more than just another fantasy show and how it has become a cultural phenomenon. Thesis statement Sum up essay's points
The first reason why Game of Thrones stands out is its world-building. Topic sentence: World building in GoT Westeros, the land in which the story takes place, is a detailed and nuanced creation that immerses viewers in its history and politics. The map of the Seven Kingdoms, the Wall, and the Iron Throne all contribute to the complex narrative. Explaining how these elements add up to GoT Moreover, the show uses numerous languages, such as Dothraki and High Valyrian, to add depth to the world. The attention to detail and consistency of the world-building makes Game of Thrones feel like a real place, not just a fictional world. Highlighting the details in the show and paragraph's point.
The second reason why Game of Thrones is unique is its incredible acting. Topic sentence: Acting From Peter Dinklage's portrayal of Tyrion Lannister to Emilia Clarke's Daenerys Targaryen, the cast has brought their characters to life in unforgettable ways. The chemistry between the actors makes the relationships between the characters feel authentic. More detail into acting performance & chemistry of actors Additionally, the actors have tackled difficult and sometimes controversial scenes with grace and professionalism, adding to the show's emotional depth. Tackling difficulties and closing the paragraph
Finally, Game of Thrones is a cultural phenomenon because of its intense violence. Topic sentence: Violence The show is known for its graphic depiction of battles, torture, and sexual violence. While some argue that the violence is gratuitous, others argue that it is necessary to convey the brutality of the world Martin created. Discussing the violence and addressing the debates in popular culture. Regardless, the show's unapologetic approach to violence has captured audiences' attention and sparked heated debates about its place in popular culture. Closing sentence of the paragraph
After all, Game of Thrones is more than just another fantasy show. Its intricate world-building, remarkable acting, and intense violence have made it a cultural phenomenon. Reiterate the thesis statement From the first season to the last, the show has kept audiences on the edge of their seats, wondering what will happen next. Depict the points made in the essay Its legacy will undoubtedly continue for years to come, as fans continue to debate and discuss its many complexities. Final thought & last impression
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