Good informative writing often begins by asking questions. “Why” questions often prompt some of the most interesting informative writing. You may wonder why relatives at a family reunion disagree so strongly about whether a particular flag should or should not be removed from state property. To understand the controversy, you could interview relatives on opposing sides of the issue, read articles and opinion pieces in newspapers or internet media outlets, or research the history of the flag at the library. Be prepared to tell where you got your information.
When you collect information on a controversial topic, you will most likely form your own opinion. To write better informative pieces, you will need to remember the difference between fact and opinion. You should also be aware that you may have an opinion before you collect all of the facts that you need to write an informative piece. You will be expected to clearly state your opinion if your assignment is to write an opinion piece. You will be expected to let your readers form their own opinion if your assignment is to write an informative piece.
Also Read: Explanatory Writing
One way to avoid confusion as to whether what you write is opinion or informative is to carefully consider the question you want to answer. Instead of asking, “When will the Confederate battle flag be removed from our statehouse?” or, “Why do people want to erase our history?” ask “What is the controversy on the Confederate battle flag all about?” This gives you a chance to explain issues such as chattel slavery, racism, states rights and American history.
After you collect your facts, your task in an informative writing piece is to present them in such a way that readers will find interesting. You will write better if you can help your audience understand the importance of a topic and help them reach an informed opinion.
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