Summary Writing: Skills and Techniques on How to Write a Good Summary

Summary Writing is very much more important than the way many actually see them. Everything that has to do with our normal daily lives requires that we put out our adventures and experiences in a very brief and concise manner so that the targeted audience is not lost. Both readers and writers alike need to master this skill of summary writing if they intend to achieve smooth communication.

It must be said that not all summaries are necessarily short, some can turn out to be very long, elaborate, and well detailed. This begs the question of whether summaries are only about brevity. The subtly important quality of a summary which many times is ignored is the fact that it must not give off unnecessary information. As long as what is intended to be communicated is absolutely required to be known, the summary writing shouldn’t be stripped bare of such information all in the name of shortness.

Summary Writing
Summary Writing: Skills and Techniques on How to Write a Good Summary

Skills For Good Summary Writing

To pen down a good summary, certain skills are just non-negotiable. You need to possess these skills and take up a step further by honing them and ensuring they do not remain in their potential state.

Take Brief summaries

It is often said that practice makes perfect. You can’t get better at any skill if you don’t continuously exert yourself at developing that skill.

You do not have to wait till the real summary task comes along before you do something, one can write a paragraph-long summary after watching a particular episode of your favorite TV series, thereafter, you could give it to a reasonable friend who could make relevant comments.

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It would also not be a bad idea if you took the bold step of submitting such practice summaries online to interested website managers and who knows you could be landing yourself a good writing gig.


You might decide not to put pen to paper and rather take advantage of the oral method or even possibly combine both side by side Whichever works best, you could also practice out aloud.

Take, for example, someone who asks you what has happened so far in a particular movie you are watching, you could put that summary skill to test again by stating the very important details down right from the title to mentioning the cast and how even the story ends.

This would be of immeasurable help to anyone at organizing your thoughts properly.

Review The Summaries of Others

Sometimes seeing how others put out their summaries could prove fruitful in honing your summary skill. No one certainly can claim exclusivity of knowledge when it comes down to writing summaries. Every writer has deficiencies that are relative.

Looking at the summaries of others can help give a wider scope of understanding of the skill and what the expectations are. You could actually find these kinds of summaries written by others online or even synopsis books just to mention a few.

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Techniques for Good Summary Writing

Even as you consistently place a high value on getting better at your summary writing skills, certain hacks can indeed come in handy when we set out to write a summary of any kind.

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It would do you a whole world of good to consider and take note of these. They include:

Sieve Your Information

In any writing, there is critical and trivial information. It is your duty to recognize which falls under which. You ask questions like do you have a great deal of critical information that you can’t help but include.

You could do this by writing in one column all the vital information and in another column, the information that can be done without is listed in there. This gives you a clear picture of where your focus lies and helps organize your thoughts in a perfect manner.

Stay With The Facts

The temptation can always be very strong to make certain detours in order to give some spice and creativity to the writings. Whilst that can not be faulted, it is very important that all of the vital facts are passed, if not the entire essence of summary writing would be defeated.

In order to write a good summary, this technique of remaining with the critical information and doing away with superfluous information can not be overstated.

Be open to Constructive Criticisms

Many writers shy away from asking for feedback for fear of criticism. Some of them are crippled at the thought of reaching out to a superior they know. The truth really is that there are certain parts to these summaries that fall under the blind eye of these writers.

It would take another eye in the person of lecturers, professors, or any relevant authority figure to discover them. As writers who are willing to improve their craft of summary writing, you must be ready to take criticisms that build up.

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Employ a Good Summary Format

Whether it is a short or long summary, there has to be an outline to summaries ought to strictly follow. The reason behind any good summary is eight out of ten times a good outline. This technique here is highly underrated to help out create a good summary.

You want to ask yourself as a writer what kind of topic sentence would serve as a perfect introduction. There is also the little question of how many sentences should follow the title. Even other extrinsic information like the theme or morals should be incorporated.

Finally, there should be a sentence at the ending that sums up all that had been said from the introduction.

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With all of this information on both the skills and techniques for writing a good summary, you are better to get started now. Many times, the knowledge that is not applied immediately can be very counterproductive. This, therefore, means, you should not merely read through this post without actually doing all that has been demanded to be done.

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