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Whats An Informal Essay

Today, we are going to talk about the type of essay that differs greatly from other types of papers. It may be a surprise for you, but an informal essay is written usually for enjoyment. This doesn’t mean that this type of essay cannot be informative or persuasive, but it is less formal than a relaxed expression of the opinion, observation, or research. A good informal essay may have a relaxed style, but it has a strong structure, though this structure can be less strict than a formal essay has. An informal essay has a tendency to be more personal than a formal one, though both can express subjective opinions. In a formal essay, a writer is silently presenting his or her thoughts behind the words; at the same time, in an informal essay, the author is connected with the reader in a conversational style.

How to Write an Informal Essay to Interest Readers

Before we are talking about how to write this type of paper, we should understand what is informal writing. Informal writing is writing where you should reveal your ability to write informally and express your own point of view on an issue. If you write informally, try to express your own personality in the essay. Don’t worry about writing in academic style, but avoid sloppiness.

Many students may ask, “what is the difference between formal and informal essay?” The difference is in the style of writing or in how we use words to say what we want to say. Different situations require different ways of using words. The way we write in the academic or scientific purposes differs a lot from the way we write to a friend or a close person. Proper writing of the informal essay is to understand the features of the genre. Observance of the basic principles and recommendations on writing will create an interesting essay.

Steps for Writing an Informal Essay

  • Select the topic. You have a great opportunity to select any topic for your paper. An informal way of writing provides a great chance to write about whatever you want. Choose a topic that will be really interesting to you. The presence of a certain narrow topic that contains the problem and prompts the reader to thinking is a great choice. If there is no list of topics among which you can choose one, and only a general direction is given, then you need to take into account which audience the essay is written for. Variants can be different: your classmates and a teacher, the commission, the literary community, the employer. If the essay is written for handing in to the teacher, then it is necessary to consider what qualities will be evaluated. Proceeding from this, the topic should be chosen in such a way that it would be possible to show those abilities that the examiner is waiting for from the author: originality, the ability to logically construct sentences, literacy, professional qualities, etc. When choosing the topic for writing an essay from the proposed list, you should choose one which you have particular knowledge in.
  • Write an informal outline for essay. This part of a paper is important, because with an informal essay outline, your writing will be much easier. An outline is like a plan with which you will not forget to include all main points in your paper.
    It often happens that a person who has enough eloquence and the ability to express his/her thoughts on paper, has difficulty in starting the essay. Thinking about the introduction can take quite a long time, which greatly darkens the process of creative work. Before you start writing an introduction, you need to formulate an idea, define a goal, and find sources of information for the work. It is important not to focus on the introductory part too long. Write an introduction including a thesis statement. Remember that the essay is distinguished precisely by the presence of the author’s view of the existing problem, his or her relation to the world, speech, and thinking.
  • Write the main body of your essay using cliches, colloquialisms, and even jargon, as the format of this paper allows you to write in this way. It is necessary to avoid complicated formulations or too long sentences. It is important to follow a laid-back style to establish contact with the reader. It is important not to overdo it, however, turning the essay into a substandard text full of slang. The correct emotional color of the text will be given by short, simple, understandable sentences, and the use of different intonations in sentences. Include a detailed analysis of the problem. Your own point of view needs to be argued on the basis of factual material.
  • Write a conclusion. Summarize everything that you have said before in your paper.
  • Remember relative brevity of writing. There are no restrictions on the number of pages, but the informal essay is usually small in volume. An informal paper has a free construction. The informal essay has a way of presentation that does not fit into any definite framework. The construction obeys its own logic, which the author adheres to, trying to consider the problem from different angles.
  • Proofread and edit your paper. Ask your friend to do it in order to find and correct more mistakes.

Informal Essay Example

The following example of informal essay writing was created to help you handle your own paper. As this type of paper is not formal, you can find personal observations, opinions, or points of view. The main thing is that this example is written in a relaxed manner, but it adheres to a particular structure. Short informal essay examples usually include the personal contact, and not the academic writing flow. You can find a subjective opinion in this type of paper, so you should write in this way as well. Our sample will help you understand how to write your own informal paper in order to get a high grade.

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Useful Tips for Informal Essay Writing

  • Keep in mind that informal essays can be written in the first person, so using “I think that…” “In my opinion…” and “I believe…” are welcome.
  • Sentences of your essay should not be too long, especially in the case of run-on sentences. At the same time – they should not be too short. Varying your sentence lengths is a good practice.
  • Reread your essay at the end of your writing process. Ask yourself whether the tone is too formal or too informal. Make all necessary changes if needed.
  • Add personality to your essay! Don’t know what it means? Well, an informal essay gives you a chance to personalize your writing, using words and phrases which are used only by you. In this way, you will have a unique piece of writing on a particular topic. Be creative!
  • All statements that you include in your paper should be clear and realistic.
  • Despite the free composition, the informal essay must have internal unity, with consistency of the author’s statements expressing his or her opinion.
  • The author does not insist on his/her point of view, but uses a method as if inviting the reader to think about and discuss it.

Typical Mistakes for Writing an Informal Essay

  • The absence of links between the substantive parts of the essay: introduction and conclusion, and the main part of the essay with the conclusion.
  • Having proportionality of parts of the essay which should not be equal in length. The introduction and conclusion in the aggregate should be no more than one-third of the entire work. The main part is two-thirds.
  • Inability to strictly follow the theme of writing in the course of reasoning.
  • Inability to compositionally structure an essay in accordance with the theme and the main idea.
  • Vast amounts of unnecessary information in the introduction and conclusion. However, too short and too unreasonable a conclusion is also inappropriate. It must really summarize and sum up all the work. The absence of a conclusion is a serious logical mistake. The conclusion must be meaningful in accordance with the introduction, topic, and main body of the essay.
  • Absence of a problem in the introduction (this is the topic itself) and the formulation of a key thesis, which will be proved there.
  • Indistinct formulation of theses, making it difficult to integrate them into the logical structure of the work. If there are several theses, then there should not be a contradiction between the theses formulated in different parts of the paper.
  • Weak arguments. They are such if they do not prove or confirm, unconvincingly or superficially, the thesis.
  • Unreasonable repetitions of the same thoughts.
  • Errors in the division of the text into paragraphs and even the complete absence of paragraphs.
  • Inability to operate with abstract concepts.
  • The non-distinction between the concepts “example” and “argument,” and inability to formulate a micro-output, on the basis of an example, correlated with the thesis put forward.

Most of us have the practice of writing diaries and recording our day to day activities. With the rise of social media and blogging many students write blogs and focus on improving their communication skills. Whenever it was, be it writing a diary or a blog that was perhaps the last time you wrote an informal essay. Even though you might've written several more informal essays in a lifetime, you're probably more accustomed with the concept of a formal essay. Formal essays come in the form of journals, articles and magazines, economic reports or even environmental reports and scholarly papers. They are well-defined and are typically written for very specific reasons.  

Informal Essays Outline

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Informal essay also known as a familiar or personal essay, which is a brief task of prose nonfiction with little or no defined format and written as one's discrete considerations. Informal essay is loaded with enjoyment and creativity. The main objective of informal essay is pleasure for both the reader and the writer and tends to be more personal than the formal essay. The writer speaks directly to the person who reads in a conversational style. A decent informal essay has an easy-going style but realm a strong composition, though that composition may be less stern than in a formal paper.

Although this type of essay is written as a replication or a response to something it doesn’t mean that you can just aimlessly babble about something meaningless for a few hundreds of words. The main characteristic of an informal essay unlike from other types are its informal style and less rigid, but useful plan. It’s not that informal essays can’t be informative, convincing, and only involves fun but they have a comfortable tone in them towards ideas, observation, humor or desire, and a strong format. 

Don't assume that an informal essay cannot be informative, but it should mainly reveal your ability to write informally or casually and in this way express your opinion on some problems, or some happenings. An informal essay is written as a type of informational piece about a personal experience. This type of essay may also be written as fiction. It tests your ability that if given a chance to write freely how a student expresses his/ her opinions through distinctive features. 

Format of an Informal Essay

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It is important to use appropriate, formal language when writing informally in an educational situation, unless the essay is a fiction and the language is cautious. To have a perfect motivation in any essay, and a consistent idea of what the essay is about is considered essential. To say that an informal essay has real, definite 'format' would be more or less a drag; nevertheless, there are some characteristics that are justly ordinary among most instances of the genre:


All of us are aware that a standard essay is format is the '5-paragraph essay' you learned in middle or high school. With an introduction, body and conclusion paragraphs, a means to write a formal essay.

Alternatively, informal essays don't really have any definite format or structure. There's no restriction on the length of the essay, there’s no agreed way for writers to organize their judgments, and many of these essays don’t even contain a distinct thesis, or statement of the writer’s idea or determination for writing.


You can pretty much ignore the rules when we're told while writing a formal essay particularly in addressing the audience. Personal essays often work with the features used such as ‘I’ or 'we' and person 'you' pronouns, contractions like 'we're', or words and phrases used in everyday talking and colloquialisms. Informal essays have a very relaxed conversational tone, much like the way we're connecting in this message. Reading an informal essay is more like listening to a friend talk than hearing an instructor lecture.


Most essayists know their audiences well and the best ways to reach them. When we're writing an informal essay, the readers might just be themselves, so there is no necessity or definite purpose for writing further than emotional relief. However, this doesn't mean that there's never any real reason for an informal essay. Writers most often use the stories they tell or the ideas they talk about to impact their readers just as formal essayists would. The only difference is, these familiar essayists most often depend on some individual link to an already attentive, or 'confined,' audience to inspire them rather than pompous tricks of the trade.

Informal Essay Topics

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For example, here are some popular essay topics to give you an idea about Informal Essays:
  • Arranged marriages: do they still work?
  • AIDS: the most challenging problem of modernity.
  • Being a teenager: my sweetest memories.
  • Being a mother: happiness or responsibility.
  • Early parenthood: good or bad?
  • Home education as a trend of the 21st century.
  • Ideal relationships between parents and kids.
  • Living in a society of ambitious people.
  • Studying and working: mission impossible?
  • Terrorism as the challenge of the modern world.
  • The “Delights” of Our School Cafeteria
  • The Best Journey of My Life
  • The Point in My Life Where I Would Start Over
  • The Perfect Woman, Marriage and Divorce
  • The Celebrities Give Us Bad Examples
  • When your life changed forever
  • How you'd spend a million dollars
  • What makes your mom or dad special
  • When a child taught you a lesson
  • A visitor you'll never forget
  • An unexplained event
  • Your longest minute

Informal Essay Structure

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The informal essay is occasionally called a narrative essay because it reads more like a story than an investigative or academic writing. The style is therefore aimed at a legit sophisticated readership. Paragraphs are short, normal as in a newspaper with narrow columns, and the tone is more informal than would be apt for a formal essay. Notice the conclusion leads to a more general all-purpose statement of what is possibly to come in the future.

  • Don’t overdo the informality, and don’t forget to edit and proofread the essay.
  • Try to punctuate the essays correctly
  • Everyday words; Slang and colloquialisms; Contractions; Uses “you” and “I”
  • Use the first person directly address the reader
  • Engage and involve the reader by writing in a casual, entertaining manner about a subject
  • Stimulate readers to raise questions in their minds, yet withhold the information.
  • The informal essay uses innovative methods and choices example, quotes, diagrams, anecdote, rhetorical queries, narratives, etc.

If a student still has troubles with the informal essay writing, just follow the steps below:

  1. Choose the topic
  2. Prepare the outline and collect enough data
  3. Create an introduction and the main body
  4. Use Informal lexical components clichés, colloquialisms, jargons, etc.
  5. Conclude the essay wisely

Every incident in life contains several poles apart stories that can be interrelated with others. If you look at the stories and extricate them, the reader can see how the story unfolds, and then you can use them as an added skill in your informal essay. Remember that the goal of the informal essay is to inform someone about something in a light manner. You are not gratified to interest and entertain someone or make the text humorous, so you will need just to review your ideas in the conclusion.