Informative writing: How to do it well

Informative writing: How to do it well

You have been tasked with writing an informative essay. This is the first time you are hearing about it. Or maybe you know about it but your work never meets expectations. What now? You could choose to spend money and hire writing services. You could also choose to expand your knowledge and skill by learning how to write it yourself.

This is why you need this article. You will learn all about informative writing and how to do it well. 

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What is informative writing

Writing is done in different forms depending on the purpose. Some are used to educate while others are used to narrate. Learning the different types of writing will help you differentiate what is required of you based on the purpose. They are as follows;

Descriptive writing

These forms of writing are used to describe something. For instance, an event, a person, an action, or a place. This kind of writing is mostly objective. As an author, you are expected to infuse your personality and feelings into the writing. You can do this by using analogies, metaphors, adjectives, and other figurative languages. You should use these literary devices to bring out a certain picture in the readers’ minds.

The writer of descriptive writing can discuss some of the things they touch or taste while in a certain place. This is done in a way that the reader feels like they are in that place too. As the writer, you should focus on the five senses. These are touch, sight, hearing, taste, and smell. When talking about a place, you could describe what a place looks like, what it smells like, and what it sounds like. This is because descriptive writing focuses on appealing to a reader’s senses. You can request for essay writing service for assistance.

Narrative writing

This is a narration, it tells a story. They can be written in a non-fictional or a fictional way. Narrative writing includes characters, setting, plot, conversation, and action. Most narratives follow the order of beginning, middle, and ending. They are mostly written in the first person to tell the story from a personal standpoint. First-person narration can also be used to tell the story from one of the character’s points of view.

Persuasive writing

informative writing

Also known as argumentative or formative writing definition, is a writing style used to convince the readers of a specific point of view or position. Your writing is based on your own opinion. This means that these papers are usually biased. You should focus on the credibility, logic of the argument, and emotional appeal of the reader. Back up your point of view with data, facts, and reasoning that will convince your readers to support your theory. These essays often end with a call to action that tries to convince the reader to side with you.

Expository writing

Also known as informative\explanatory writing. Expository essay writing involves conveying facts to your audience. This is one of the most common academic papers. You are expected to provide facts and figures or explain how a process is completed. Being a factual paper, the information is presented in a logical sequence and order. For this paper, you should avoid including your personal views and opinions. The information should be relayed objectively. The aim is to educate and not convince.

Purpose of informative writing

The purpose of informative writing is to educate your readers on certain topics. You are expected to give your reader comprehensive detailed information about the given topic. These essays usually answer one of the five “Wh”, that is who, what, where, when, and why. They also sometimes answer “how” if the topic includes an action that needs to be done.

Informative essays never express personal opinions or try to convince readers to take certain options. The writer needs to research the given topic to present it from different perspectives. Develop your paper using logic and deliver it in a clear language. If your informative paper is interesting, it may build a reader’s interest in the topic. This is exclusive to the reader’s will.

Advantages of informative writing

Informative essays can be used for illustration. Many informative essays can be used as visual aids. In such cases, a different situation is brought up to develop the main points of the essay. This situation may be brought up as background information. This comes before the essay goes into the detail of the main topic.

Expository essays expand on a cause and effect scenario. They put focus on the effect a situation has on other things. In this essay, the causes and effects are both examined extensively with factors that bridge the two aspects. Look at an informative essay example to understand this concept better.

Informative writing amplifies the importance of clear and easy-to-follow information. This is why informative essays are a dominant aspect in subjects that require the following of steps. For instance, a process analysis paper requires the inclusion of the step followed in each stage. These steps influence the completion of the task and give expected results.

Structure of an informative essay

The basic structure of informative writing is simple. You need to have a beginning, middle, and ending, formally known as the introduction, body, and conclusion. This paper requires that the basic principles of writing be met. Having an informative writing template as you write will make your work easier. You should also incorporate a formal academic writing style. Do not write from a personal angle, be objective. The key to a good informative essay lies in the topic’s presence. This topic translates to the title of your paper.

Where to start

The first step is to study the assignment requirements and instructions. Once that is internalized, begin to collect relevant information. Find out the primary and secondary sources you will require and use them to accumulate relevant information. Check on the specific format and word count. Start working early so that you have time to edit adequately.

start informative writing

Next, you need to pick a topic. This is an important step because your topic will set the tone for your paper. All other stages of your paper depend on your chosen theme. Choose a topic that you can easily find information about. Surprise your reader with facts and intriguing statements. Do not be bland and boring. Keep your audience in mind as you pick a topic. Don’t go for basic and common knowledge information if your professor is your audience.

Once you find your topic, brainstorm, and research on the selected theme. This process requires a lot of time and attention because it is labor-intensive. Make notes and write any important information that can be included in your paper. This way, you will not miss any important details. Do not leave any points out otherwise you may forget them. Once you acquire enough information, use it to form an outline. You can now begin to construct the first draft.

How to choose an appropriate topic

This process can stall your writing process for a long time since you don’t know what to write about. In some cases, your teacher or professor may give you a deliberated topic. This lifts one burden and now you can begin working on your data collection. If the topic is not given to you, there are things you should consider while choosing one. Look into the availability of relevant literary sources you can use to write. You are allowed to look for your source first before coming up with a topic.

For an informative essay, you can choose whatever topic you want. It all depends on your interests, the course expectation, the subject, and your focus. It is important to note that picking easy topics hardly ever gets you good grades. Choose a topic that is engaging, complex, and interesting. Your theme determines whether the reader will want to read your work. Give them something they will enjoy. Here are some examples of informative writing topics you may use;

  • Recycling
  • Procrastination and its effect
  • How to open a bank account
  • Homelessness
  • Dream interpretation
  • World poverty
  • Air pollution

Writing informative essays outline

Once you have searched the internet for sources and information, you are ready to create an outline. This also means that you have successfully chosen a topic. You are advised to pick several topics then ask your professor or friend to choose one. This way, you will write on a topic you enjoy and is guaranteed to interest your reader. In your outline, write your ideas down without missing any important information like in a sociological essay.

When you do not feel inspired or can’t organize your thoughts logically, writing can be exhausting and problematic. This is why a detailed informative essay outline is important to writers. With a good outline, you can plan, research, and organize your paper easily and efficiently. As you come up with an outline, remember the parts of an essay, the introduction, body, and conclusion.

You need information on all three parts to avoid mixing up your content and structure. Even though all your information is in your outline, it should not be too long. Your outline should only contain the key points of each section of your paper. Do not include minor details that may distract you from your topic. Your outline should help you focus on the main theme.

How to write an informative essay

Do not forget to answer the “wh” questions, who, what, where, when, and why. Providing answers for this in your essay based on your topic will give you an informative masterpiece. Your readers will remain interested until the end of your paper. Your paper will be impactful and unforgettable. If your informative writing requires you to analyze and process someone else’s work, apply these rules;

  • It is not necessary to work with the entire text, pick more informative and specific parts to work with
  • Express the authors thought if it is needed, do it in short forms and without distorting it
  • Your informative presentation should be compiled base on the author’s text

The introduction

This is your opportunity to present your thesis and capture the attention of your reader. A thesis statement is usually one or two sentences informing the reader what the paper is about. Show the reader why this is an important topic to discuss. In your first paragraph, start with a general idea based on your topic. You can start your paragraph with a question or an interesting statement. Make this your hook that will keep your readers stuck on your paper.

As you continue, you should gradually become more specific. Include some background information on the topic. Define keywords and technical terms. Briefly discuss your key points and main information. Your final sentence is your thesis statement. Remember, your opinion on the topic should not come up.

Your thesis statement can be a comparison between two scholarly works with different standpoints. You can also compare viewpoints of a controversial subject. The thesis should be the first thing you come up with after choosing a topic. Your thesis statement does not have to be a proven fact or the result of an observation. It is simply the main idea of your essay which will be supported by the following statements. A thesis statement gives your reader a basic idea of your paper. It also shows your understanding of the idea and your knowledge of writing an informative essay. Here is a summary of the introduction;

  • Inform your reader about a problem they have not paid attention to
  • Explain the importance
  • Present background information and past researches done
  • Compare viewpoints on the subject as a thesis statement
  • Analyze a cause and effect relationship

The body

The body of your informative writing allows you to expound on your thesis. It should contain all the ideas, facts, and information building your topic to sustain your reader’s interest. It should cover everything anticipated by your reader. Use multiple primary and secondary literary sources. Incorporate accurate facts, and expert judgments to support your information. You should have your information organized in a logical sequence on your outline.

The body consists of several paragraphs. In each paragraph, discuss a new idea, do not mix them. Start with a topic sentence. This is usually the main idea you are discussing in that paragraph. Back up your main points with supporting statements, facts and evidence. Talk about experiments and research that have been done to prove your hypothesis. Delve into the points you mentioned in the introduction.

Make sure each paragraph is different from the previous one. You can tackle the points in order of their importance. Start with the most important points and finish with the least important. The format to follow for your argumentation is topics, sequence, chronology, and contrast. With these, your body will be comprehensive and effective. If you want to understand the body better, look at informative writing examples.

Some of the common mistakes made during argumentation are;

  • Repetition by Stating the same idea in two different sections
  • Writing extra information that does not directly relate to the topic
  • Inconsistent writing, each point you discuss should have a connection to the point above it

The conclusion

This is your final opportunity to drive the point home. Summarize your essay in a paragraph or two. Move from the specific back to the general. Your conclusion should insight your reader to want to find out more about the topic. Emphasize the seriousness of the issue. Restate your thesis statement for emphasis. Summarize the points made for and against the thesis statement. If you provided a general outline of the key points in your introduction, mention them again in the conclusion.

Paraphrase them to avoid repetition and talk about what was learned about those topic areas. After this, bring in a few closing remarks that put a finishing touch on the most important elements. Do not bring up new information and ideas in the conclusion.

Encourage your readers to contemplate the important elements of your paper. Challenge them to learn more about the topic on their own. You could finish your informative explanatory writing by posing a rhetorical question. Remember, this is not a persuasive essay, Maintain objectivity and impartiality. Common mistakes made in the conclusion include;

  • Bringing up new arguments, information, and ideas in the conclusion meant to summarize your paper
  • It is not necessary to repeat everything written, and even as you repeat paraphrase the points

Proofread and edit

Go through your work and edit it. This is a vital part of any writing process, do not ignore it. Reading your essay aloud may help you notice where your writing is unclear or wrongly worded. Think whether you have included all the information you intended to include. Give a friend to read through and offer suggestions to improve your paper. Pay special attention to grammar, punctuation, and spellings. As you edit, get rid of repetitive phrases as well. Ask yourself the following questions as you edit;

  • Is your language clear and easy to understand
  • Is your thesis statement clear
  • Will your readers learn something new
  • Is your essay interesting to read
  • Did you cite your work properly
  • Do you have the right structure in your paragraphs
  • Are your points directly related to your thesis

Below is a simplified list of all steps to follow to write a successful informative essay;

  • Understand the requirements of your assignment such a word count, format, and reference style
  • Select a complex and interesting topic with information that is easy to find
  • Conduct thorough research to find useful information and all viewpoints of your chosen topic
  • Take notes as you research so that you do not leave any important information out on your paper
  • Write down all key details of your sources such as the author, title, year of publication, and publisher for your referencing
  • Brainstorm what your main points will be considering the title to create a logically sequenced arrangement
  • Write a good outline that includes all the main points
  • Come up with a thesis statement that best describes your topic
  • Plan the structure of your introduction and hook
  • Organize your paragraphs one point at a time in order of importance
  • Write your first draft using the information on your outline
  • Use transitional words and statements to link your paragraphs and show the relation
  • Come up with a captivating conclusion to summarize your paper and emphasize important points
  • Make corrections and adjustments by proofreading and editing to improve your paper

Basic dos and don’ts of informative writing

Writing can be a problematic task. Knowing the basic rules of different forms of writing clears some uncertainty. You will be able to flow better when you know what is and isn’t expected from you. Here are some rules for informative writing;

  • Choose a topic that your readers are not so familiar with to avoid writing a boring paper
  • Explore the topic so that you can write about it, start by gathering knowledge before writing
  • Create an outline and organize your information to have a structured paper
  • Maintain the expected format throughout the paper
  • Think about what your readers want to read
  • Challenge yourself and write it on your own, use informative writing prompts to practice
  • Present your paper in a direct and straight forward way
  • Observe the chronological order of events
  • Use titles and headlines to organize your work
  • Feel free to use graphs charts and figures to illustrate your points

What shouldn’t you do while writing an informative essay?

  • Write about something you know little about
  • Push beyond the stipulated deadline, lateness reduces your marks
  • Write only what’s relevant to the topic and avoid writing too much information
  • Copy and paste someone else’s word son your paper, paraphrase them
  • Go far beyond or less than the word count given, Keep track of the number of words
  • Only use spell check, it doesn’t catch all the errors
  • Write without breaks, give yourself time to reflect, and come up with new thoughts

Informative writing is not a unique style of writing in terms of formatting. Learning to work on informative writing means you have learned the format of starting essays in general. You may find it hard to write. Do not stress yourself. Look for homework writing. Do not force yourself into writing. Take your time to write as you do your research. You can look at informative writing samples online to gain bearing. You will achieve better results when you start early and work diligently.

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