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Informal Letter

  • Informal letters are friendly letters written to friends, parents, relations, or generally to someone you know and are very close to
  • Informal letters maintain a friendly style and you are expected to use everyday conversational English, not formal language
Features of an Informal Letter
  1. Writer’s Address and Date: This is usually written at the top right side of the letter. You can use straight form or indented/slanting form
  2. Greetings/Salutation: It is written at the left side, just below the date. E.g. Dear or My dear plus the first name of the receiver; Dear Pat or My Dear Pat; Dear mum, Dear Dad, etc.
  3. Introduction: This is usually used for exchange of pleasantries. This is because of the close relationship with the receiver
  4. The Body of the letter is subdivided into paragraphs. The main purpose of writing is stated in the second paragraph and the main theme and sub-themes are developed in subsequent paragraphs
  5. Conclusion: As in other types of compositions, the conclusion should be snappy, and you try to create a lasting impression
  6. Language: The language is informal. It is the kind of language you use in your everyday conversation. For example:
    1. Contracted forms or shortened forms of words can be used. E.g. couldn’t, I’ll, etc.
    2. Slang can be used, but do not overuse it. E.g. if you have some expressions that are commonly used in your school or home, you can use them, especially when writing to people who are conversant with such slang
    3. Exclamation marks can also be used. E.g. What a pity!
    4. Tone: Your tone depends on whom you are writing and what you are writing about. Your letters should always refer to a warm. close relationship with the receiver
    5. You should have a mixture of short and long sentences to find good expression
  7. Ideas: Like in all other types of compositions, your ideas should be presented logically, and your paragraphs should be developed fully, and properly linked
  8. Closure: The closure, as in other types of composition should be snappy. You should also try to create a final impression. Use sign-outs such as Yours Sincerely, then your first name