What Is Formal Writing Style And When Should You Use It?

As you all know, the writing style is how a writer expresses his thoughts. It includes grammar and punctuation options, general tone, and organization of written essays. Style varies by subject, audience, and context. For example, the tone of an academic paper is very different from the tone of a text message to a friend.

Writing Styles: Formal and Conversational

You have encountered this mystery many times in your life. Whether writing a letter or an article, if you’re a complete writer, this question must have left you scratching your head a few times, if nothing else. No particular style of writing is necessarily “better” than another. Great care must be taken before choosing which writing style to use, as each style serves a different purpose.

Informal writing style

In a conversational writing style, you’ll create a sense of familiarity by making it easy for the reader to understand. While you can write it the way you would normally speak, the text should be concise and to the point.

This is where you will address the reader directly. Ask questions and involve them in the conversation. No matter how complicated a topic may seem, you can present it in simple language. Conversational-style content may consist of longer sentences interspersed with abbreviations, fancy words, and abbreviations, similar to how you speak naturally.

Many people like to add a little emotion to their content by injecting a bit of anecdote. This adds an artificial element to the content.

Formal writing style

This is the writing style you can apply if you want to appear neutral on the topic. Your objective perspective on the subject will facilitate a more professional approach. Formal writing is generally written in the third person. Topics in formal writing style are often complex, so it’s best to use short sentences and no complex vocabulary.

There’s only room for abbreviations if the acronym is something most people know better than the actual term. When writing formally, avoid emotive punctuation, such as exclamation points, unless you are citing other sources. There is no room for personal affection here. Stay away from personal opinions.

What style do you choose?

Both methods have their advantages, depending on the platform used. A conversational style helps you communicate better with your audience. By applying this style, you want readers to recognize your work from others. People tend to be conversational while adding a personal touch to content, such as articles, blogs, or speeches. They are usually articles that provide general information rather than complex information.

On the other hand, a formal writing style gives the impression of an authoritative voice because you need readers to respect your subject matter expertise. This is for readers who care more about the substance than you personally. The formal writing style is the style you would adopt when writing academic content or technical information, such as a user manual. 

So it’s about more than just defining your style. In general, it depends on what the reader wants from you. Who is your audience? This should be the main question you need to ask yourself. Comfort is easy.

Major difference between formal & informal writing styles

Informal writing for everyday use. It reflects how you naturally talk and write with friends, family, and acquaintances. Its tone is more personal and includes abbreviations, slang, and figures of speech. Informal writing feels similar to a personal conversation.

Formal writing is writing for readers you don’t know on a personal level. They are usually more complex than informal writing. Formal writing has a less personal tone, and the language is more like a person.

Type of writing style

In writing, there are four main types: expository, descriptive, persuasive, and narrative. Each of these writing styles serves a specific purpose. A single text can contain multiple writing styles.

Explanatory writing style 

Expository writing is one of the most popular types of writing. When a writer writes in an explanatory style, they have to explain a concept and convey information about themselves to a broader audience. Expository writing does not include the author’s point of view but focuses on accepted facts about a topic, including statistics or other evidence. Examples of Expository Writing,

  • textbook
  • How To Articles
  • Recipe
  • News (no editorial or commentary)
  • Business, technical or scientific writing.

Illustrate writing style

Descriptive writing often occurs in fiction, although it can also occur in fictional stories (for example, memoirs, first-hand accounts of events, or travel guidebooks). When a writer writes in a descriptive style, he paints a picture for his readers with the words of a person, place, or thing. An author may use metaphors or other literary devices to describe the author’s impressions through his five senses (what he hears, sees, smells, tastes, or touches). But the writer doesn’t try to make the viewer believe anything or explain the scene; it simply describes things. Examples of Descriptive Writing:

  • Poetry
  • Keep a diary/diary
  • Natural description
  • Fiction or play

Persuasive Writing Style 

Persuasive writing is your main writing style in your academic essay. When an author writes persuasively, he tries to convince his audience of a position or belief. Persuasive writing incorporates the author’s point of view and biases, along with the reasons and reasons the author gives to justify his position. Any “argumentative essay” you write for school should have a persuasive writing style. Persuasive Writing examples:

  • Letter
  • Journal Articles and Editorials
  • Article comment
  • Complaint letter
  • Advertise
  • Recommendation letter

Narrative writing style 

Narrative writing is used in almost all long-form fiction, or non-fiction. When authors write in a narrative style, they’re not just trying to convey a message; they’re trying to create and communicate a story with characters, conflict, and setting. Narrative Writing examples:

  • Oral history
  • Fiction/Fiction
  • poetry (especially epic or poems)
  • Short story
  • Anecdote

When to Use Formal and Informal Writing

It’s necessary to understand when to use it. A formal writing style is not certainly “better” or “worse” than an informal style. Both have a time and place, but they have very different purposes. Therefore, we must carefully choose the most suitable style to wear. Many factors can influence your choice.

The two main factors determining your preference for formal & informal writing style are your audience and your medium. Writing for professional or business purposes may require a formal style. However, if you are writing to someone you know, you can use a more informal tone.

Email also tends to be less formal than paper correspondence. However, this is changing slightly as more and more organizations use email for all communication. Therefore, you should avoid using “text chat” or too many casual conversations.

If you need clarification on how formal your writing should be, it’s usually best to err on caution. Few people are offended by red tape. However, you may offend others by acting too casually.

Final Thoughts

There are many differences between formal and informal writing. However, they all have their purposes. That’s why it’s essential to understand both styles and when to use them. When writing professionally or academically, choose Formal writing. Remember to skip contractions and stay neutral.

Informal writing, on the other hand, comes from within. It targets an individual audience, so you can write as if you were speaking to them. You can use abbreviations, phrases, slang, and more. Regardless of why you write, be sure to re-read your work to check for typos. The most crucial thing in writing is to have something to say and to ensure that what you say can be understood!

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