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A writing style is an author’s unique way of communicating with words. As you work to develop your own writing style, consider these 8 strategies.

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Just like a famous designer might have a unique fashion style, great writers develop their own style of writing that becomes their signature way of telling a story or communicating an idea. From the rhythm of your story to the words you use, the way you come across in your writing defines your style. Try these tips for finding a good writing style that fits who you are and the stories you want to tell.

What Is Writing Style?

A writing style is an author’s unique way of communicating with words. An author creates a style with the voice, or personality, and overall tone that they apply to their text. A writer’s style can change depending on the type of writing they’re doing, who they’re writing for, and their target audience. A news journalist will have a very different style than a blogger, for example.

2 Elements of Any Writing Style

An author’s writing style is defined by two elements:

  1. Voice: Voice is the personality you take on in your writing. It is the point of view through which you’re telling a story.
  2. Tone: Tone is identified by the attitude that a piece of writing conveys. Writers create tone through elements like word choice, sentence structure, and grammar.

4 Types of Writing Styles

There are four main types of writing. While a writer will still incorporate their own voice in their writing, these different writing styles each have a purpose and specific audience, which dictates how an author should shape their copy:

  1. Expository writing: Use an expository writing style to inform or explain a topic to readers. Examples of expository writing include technical writing, business writing, high school essays, and news articles.
  2. Descriptive writing: Descriptive writing uses figurative language and sensory detail to describe a person, place, or thing to allow readers to create a picture in their mind. Descriptive writing is the style of writing most often found in poetry.
  3. Narrative writing: Narrative style is writing that tells a story and includes elements often found in a novel or short story, like the main character, setting, and plot. It is most often used in fiction writing. Examples of narrative writing style include The Catcher in the Rye, The Color Purple, and The Lord of the Rings.
  4. Persuasive writing: When you use a persuasive writing style, you communicate your opinion to try to influence the reader to adopt your stance on a subject. Examples of persuasive writing include cover letters, advertising campaigns, political speeches, and editorials.