Writing an informal letter can be a daunting task for many people. While formal letters are usually reserved for more professional or official settings, informal letters are intended to be more casual. They’re often used to write to friends and family, and writing one can be a great way to stay connected with your loved ones.
In this crash course, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about writing an informal letter. We’ll cover the basics, such as formatting and topics to discuss, as well as tips and ideas for making your letter stand out. We’ll also discuss how to use the right tone and language to effectively convey your message.
By the time you finish reading this guide, you will have all the knowledge and skills necessary to write an engaging and heartfelt informal letter that will make your receiver smile!
What Is an Informal Letter?
An informal letter is a letter that is written in a more personal, intimate, and conversational tone. It is more relaxed than formal letters, and its language and structure don’t necessarily follow correct English grammar rules. It also does not contain the same standard structure as formal letters. When writing an informal letter, the writer should think about who will be receiving it and what kind of message they would like to communicate.
Informal letters often include sentimental or personal topics—such as family news or vacation stories—and focus on relationships between the writer and recipient. In addition to being more conversational, they usually contain slang words, abbreviations, and emoticons to convey a relaxed feeling.
The main purpose of an informal letter is to keep in touch with family members, close friends, and other people you are familiar with but may not have seen recently. In this way, informal letters can help maintain relationships over time by keeping people in touch with each other’s lives.
How to Start an Informal Letter
When starting an informal letter, it’s important to establish a connection with the recipient and make them feel comfortable. Start by greeting them in a familiar manner. This could be a simple “Hi [name]”, “Dear [name]”, or a more informal version such as “Hey [name]” or “What’s up [name]?” It’s important to remember to use their name in the greeting so that it feels more personalized.
Then, move on to the body of your letter. It helps to think about the purpose of your letter and structure your thoughts accordingly. For example, if you are writing to update someone on recent events, start with a brief overview of those events before getting into details. You can also use this opportunity to address any topics of importance you discussed in previous conversations or add any other information they might find interesting.
Finally, end your letter by restating how much you value their friendship or relationship and make sure they know that they can always reach out if they need anything.
How to Format Your Letter
Informal letters tend to follow a more relaxed formatting style than formal letters. Here are a few tips on how to correctly format your informal letter:
Start with your address and the date below it. You may also add a reference line above your address.
Use the word “Dear” and then the recipient’s name, followed by a comma (e.g. “Dear John,”). You can also use terms such as “Hi,” “Hello,” or “Greetings.”
The body is the main content of your letter and should include any information that you want to convey to the reader. Break up your text into shorter paragraphs and explain each point clearly in as few words as possible. Make sure to include examples or supporting evidence for any claims that you make in the body of your letter.
Closing & Signature
End with an appropriate closing such as “Sincerely,” or “Yours truly,” followed by a comma and then your full name below that. You can also add additional comments such as “PS: please let me know if you have any questions!” at the end of your letter before signing off with your name.
Writing Style for an Informal Letter
When writing an informal letter, it’s important to use a friendly and natural language that is reflective of the relationship between you and the recipient. This can be achieved through the use of simple words, short sentences, and light humor. Here are some tips on how to write an informal letter in a friendly, conversational style:
Address the recipient with an appropriate salutation, like “Hello” or “Hi”. Avoid overly formal salutations like “Dear Mr./Miss/Mrs.”
Write as if you were talking to someone in person; use short sentences and friendly terms that express your feelings about the subject. Avoid using complex words or complicated terms that may confuse the reader.
Mention Positive Things
Mention anything positive about your relationship with the recipient or any shared experiences you may have had together. Doing so will make your letter more personal and will ensure that it stands out from formal letters.
Speak from Your Heart
Let your feelings show through in your letter. If you are expressing disappointment or anger towards someone, make sure to be direct but respectful in expressing yourself. Similarly, if you are writing out of love or gratitude, express those feelings clearly and sincerely without going overboard.
The Right Way to Sign Off an Informal Letter
Signing off an informal letter is an important step in the letter-writing process and deserves your attention. There are a variety of ways to end your informal correspondence, each expressing a different sentiment.
The most straightforward approach to closing an informal letter is with a traditional sign off such as “Sincerely,” “Warm regards,” or “Take care.” This type of closing will convey an overall polite tone and may be suitable for any situation.
If you know the recipient well, you can personalize your sign off with a greeting or expression that reflects your relationship. Examples include “Best wishes,” “Love” or even using their first name.
Depending on the context and relationship you have with the recipient, it can be appropriate to close with something more lighthearted like “Until next time!” or “Be excellent to each other!” Keep in mind that these should generally be reserved for people whom you know well, lest they come across as too casual or disrespectful.
No matter which closing you choose, taking the time to properly finish your informal letter will help show respect and appreciation for the reader.
Putting It All Together: 8 Tips for Writing Great Informal Letters
Now you know the necessary components of an informal letter. To help you craft a strong, meaningful letter, here are 8 tips to put everything together:
- Choose an appropriate salutation and closing. This can depend on how close you are to the person and how formal or informal the context is.
- Make it succinct yet comprehensive–don’t forget to include your reasons for writing, the main points of discussion and possible solutions or actions to be taken.
- Keep your tone friendly, respectful and appropriate throughout.
- Be sure to check your spelling and grammar before sending out any correspondence!
- Structure your paragraphs by topic or idea and use punchy sentences wherever possible to keep things interesting for the reader.
- Include questions or suggestions that will invite further conversation – it can help keep the conversation going!
- Incorporate anecdotes or references that may be relevant to the subject at hand whenever possible – this makes it easier for both parties to understand each other better when discussing complex topics like politics or religion!
- Always end with a friendly signoff before signing off with your name, signature and contact information – this helps create familiarity between sender and recipient too!
All things considered, writing an informal letter is a simple yet effective way to communicate with family and friends. While there are some rules to follow, writing an informal letter is really about expressing yourself in your own words. Whether you decide to keep it light and breezy or focus on something more serious, with the right approach you can write an unforgettable informal letter that your recipient will cherish.