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Writing in Spanish

5 Easy Tips You Wish You Knew to Create Your Own Writing Style

Everyone has their style when it comes to writing. Several sorts of writing are determined by both the audience and the format – whether it is an essay, research paper, diary, poetry, or any other style of writing.

Finding your writing style is essential since it becomes a part of your identity. 

This article will explain the various writing styles, so you know which to use. It will also provide you with some ideas on how to establish your writing style.

The Four Kinds of Writing

Knowing the many forms of writing is essential to finding your writing style.

There are four kinds of writing:

1. Expository Writing

Expository writing’s primary goal is to explain something. It is often employed in academic contexts since it is one of the most prevalent writing styles. 

The author’s viewpoint is unlikely to be included in expository writing. Instead, it is packed with facts that either convey knowledge about a certain topic or explain how to accomplish something.

When Should You Use Expository Writing?

  • How-to manuals
  • Recipes
  • Writing for academic purposes
  • Papers on technical and scientific subjects
  • Editorials and news

2. Narrative Writing

Narrative writing is exactly what it sounds like: it relies on narration and narrative. This kind of writing necessitates the author’s creation of characters and, at times, conversation. 

It follows a plot that introduces the characters and takes the reader on their trip.

When Should You Use Narrative Writing

  • Stories of brevity
  • Novels
  • Poetry
  • Pieces that are biographical or autobiographical
  • The oral history
  • Anecdotes

3. Persuasive Writing

Persuasive writing comprises arguments to persuade the reader. The author shares their point of view and provides evidence for why you should agree with them on a particular issue.

When Should You Use Persuasive Writing?

  • Advertorial
  • Recommendation letter
  • Opinion and editorial articles
  • Statements of Personal Interest
  • Reviews

4. Descriptive Writing

Descriptive writing is concerned with explaining something in great detail. 

Descriptive writing, in addition to short and to-the-point language, builds a picture for the reader.

When Should You Use Descriptive Writing?

  • Journaling
  • Poetry
  • Fiction
  • Writing about nature

First, Choose Your Purpose, then Select a Style

When writing, you’ll often be reminded to consider your audience before you begin. 

Understanding your “why” will assist you in deciding on your “how.” That is why it is important to understand the many sorts of writing styles. 

It will assist you in making your writing more effective and carefully crafted.

Why Does It Matter?

Knowing why you’re writing will assist you to fulfil the piece’s purpose. Furthermore, if you have a clear objective, you will be able to build your unique writing style.

What Is Your Writing Style?

Writing is a kind of communication, and everyone has something to say and a distinct method of saying it.

Consider the following while defining your writing style:

1. Tone and Voice:

Voice refers to who is speaking, but tone refers to how you are speaking. When you write, you are essentially placing words that you might utter out. 

As a result, when someone reads it, they may notice a specific cadence, or rhythm, in how you put the words together. 

This becomes one of your writing style’s most evident characteristics.

2. Examine Your Point of View:

Take a step back to understand how and why you view things the way you do. 

Then, in your writing, strive to portray that thinking process so that the reader understands where you’re coming from.

3. Avoid Cliches:

Refrain from using overused terms in your writing. While cliches provide truth, they detract from your unique style since they have been overused.

4. Understand the Writing Rules:

Ensure to follow basic writing norms and language, especially when writing for academics or business. 

It will be simpler to concentrate on the real topic of the work if you master these guidelines before you begin.

You can use various online tools like Hemingway editor, Grammarly, etc…

If you want to write in Spanish you can use iScribo to ensure you’re free from any grammatical errors.

5. Daily Practice:

The more you do it, the better you become at it. You will automatically improve if you write a little bit every day.

Final Thoughts

You will take a different strategy each time, depending on what you want to write.

You may pick the sorts of writing that are most suited for each work by identifying your objectives and understanding your audience.

As you continue to write, you will begin to build a style that is unique to you.  Best wishes and happy writing!

Categories
Writing in Spanish

How to Write Simple Sentences in Spanish

Today, we will learn the basics of forming simple sentences in Spanish. I’m sure you hadn’t noticed, but the previous sentence is an example of a simple sentence translated from Spanish. To be more specific, simple sentences contain a single verb or verbal periphrasis and, consequently, a single predicate.

In iScribo, we teach you some basic Spanish grammar ideas to form sentences in Spanish.

Simplify your writing

You don’t want to put the cart before the horse. To become fluent in Spanish, the essential thing is not to over-complicate your writing. It doesn’t matter if there are many short sentences in a paragraph, the important thing is that they are well written and, from there, little by little you will improve.

Main structure of the simple sentence

Learn it by heart: SUBJECT + PREDICATE = SIMPLE SENTENCE. For example, Juan viene al cine (Juan is coming to the cinema). The subject is the main element as it is the one who performs the action. The predicate includes the action being performed and the context.

Identify each part of the subject

In a simple sentence the subject is usually a person or persons, or a noun accompanied by another element, for example:

  • Juan e Inés: two proper nouns.
  • La casa (The house): determiner and common noun.
  • El coche azul (The blue car): determiner, common noun, and adjective.

Identify each part of the predicate

It may seem like an easy task, but in a compound sentence, everything gets a bit more complicated. Ideally, you should familiarise yourself with each element of the predicate, this is also a very good exercise for learning Spanish grammar. The main element of the predicate is the verb, so this is the first thing you should look for, and it is accompanied by other grammatical categories:

  • Noun, which can be common or proper: Clara tiene una moto (Clara has a motorbike).
  • Definite or indefinite articles, which usually go with the noun: Clara tiene una moto (Clara has a motorbike).
  • Pronouns, which replace the noun: vienes mañana (You come tomorrow). Instead of saying Paco, for example.
  • Adverbs, which modify the verb and give context to the predicate: Tú vienes mañana (You come tomorrow). There are different types of adverbs, but we will see them another time.
  • Prepositions: they express a relationship with other words and are undoubtedly the most difficult to put into practice. El gato estaba bajo la ropa (The cat was under the clothes).
  • Conjunctions: they link words, even sentences, in a logical order: Iré, pero más tarde (I will go, but later).
  • Adjectives: accompany nouns to give them some additional explanation: La silla bonita es la rosa (The pretty chair is the pink one).

The only key is to practise!

The theory is always the tricky part of Spanish grammar. We know that experience is everything in this life, so practice non-stop, and never give up, it’s the best way to learn how to create simple sentences in Spanish. Remember to start with simple structures and, if you want to know if you are doing it right, use iScribo text editor. May the words be with you!

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Writing in Spanish

How to Write a Resume in Spanish that Stands Out

There are many benefits to learning how to write a Spanish CV. Possessing a commanding knowledge of Spanish shows a dedication to the job in question. Plus, it makes things easier for employers in Spanish-speaking countries.

This goes beyond simply running text through a translator. There’s an art to composing a great resume or CV — particularly in a second language, as there are cultural norms that also need to be followed.

This is a job seeker’s one chance to show potential employers what makes them stand out from the rest. However, if that resume isn’t in the employer’s native language, it’s a safe bet it will end up at the bottom of the pile. This is certainly the case for anyone submitting a resume in English when the language in question is Spanish.

Here are some top tips on how to write a resume in Spanish.

How to create your Spanish resume

Before typing up your resume, it’s vital to know what information to include. Keep in mind that complex, technical jargon can often be difficult to translate into Spanish with total accuracy. This is why anyone writing a Spanish resume for the first time should have a native speaker proofread it before submitting to employers.

Information to include

Ensure that all information listed in the various sections of your resume is relevant and appears in order of importance. Here are the specific sections to include when considering how to write a Spanish CV:

  • Photo/la foto: While it’s not mandatory to include a photo on the cover of a resume, it does help the employer humanise the applicant and can be quite common in Spanish-speaking countries. The employer sees the applicant as a person rather than a collection of words and bullet points. In a stack of resumes in which the majority of applicants have similar skills but only a handful have photos, this can help you stand out.
  • Personal information/datos personales: Applicants should place their name and contact information at the top of the resume. Depending on the circumstances, it can consist of a home address, email address, and phone number, but will need to include nationality and your residency number if you’re already living abroad, such as your NIE number in Spain, or your RUT if you are in Chile, for example. This information is often the heading, or title, of the resume. It’s also where the applicant should attach a photo, if they decide to do so.
  • Education/formación académica: This is one of the most important parts of the resume. Besides the section detailing professional experience, this is where most employers’ eyes first land. The applicant should list all relevant education history and credentials in reverse chronological order, with the most recent degree appearing first.

For each degree, include a short summary of the course of study and what year it was completed. If the applicant didn’t go to university or college, then this is the section where they should mention any relevant training or courses they have taken.

  • Professional experience/experiencia profesional: Professional experience takes up the bulk of most resumes. This is where applicants list their work history relevant to the industry in question. Therefore, it’s not necessary for the applicant to mention every job they’ve ever had. It’s best to list only the most impressive and most recent work. Long gaps in employment history are red flags for employers.

Similar to the education section, applicants should list their employment history in reverse chronological order with a short summary describing the roles and responsibilities performed in each job.

  • Skills/informática: Strong skills can really catch a potential employer’s attention, especially if the applicant is light on work experience. The applicant should pay close attention to the skills mentioned in the job description and list any he or she possesses. More general skills can apply here too. Some examples include clear communication, analytical thinking, leadership, etc. More specific skills include things like proficiency in specific computer programs and being licensed to use special equipment.
  • Languages/idiomas: This section is important for a Spanish resume. It’s impressive to employers if an applicant is multilingual. Here, applicants should state the languages they speak and their level of proficiency, such as native, intermediate, or beginner. If you have been studying an official program such as with the Cervantes Institute, remember to list your level, such a B2 or C1 etc.

Writing your cover letter

A cover letter, also known as a carta de presentación in Spanish, needs to be short and formal. At the top right should be the applicant’s name, address, and telephone number. Below this should be the recruiter’s name, their company, and the date and job reference. The main text should mention the job the applicant is applying for, why they’re applying, and what makes them a suitable candidate. It should end with a formal Spanish expression, a signature, and a printed name beneath it.

Useful phrases to include

Wondering how to write a Spanish CV and covering letter? Below are some useful phrases:

  • Estimado/a – Dear (in the plural form. This can be used alone or as estimado/a if you are writing to a specific person)
  • A quien corresponda – To whom it may concern
  • Si necesita más información, no dude en contactar conmigo – Should you need any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me
  • Espero tener noticias suyas pronto – I look forward to hearing from you soon
  • Saludos cordiales – Best regards
  • Reciba un cordial saludo – Yours sincerely

Adapting your resume from English to Spanish

There are differences in expectations for Spanish versus English resumes. Therefore, it’s not necessary to translate a resume word for word from one language to the other. Instead, the applicant should adapt it.

For example, resumes written for employers in Spain tend to have less information than those written in English, and professional experience is not as detailed. When writing a resume in Spanish for a job application in Mexico, education is one of the most valued sections. In this case, the applicant should include as much relevant detail as possible.

Also, don’t worry if your CV in Spanish suddenly seems to be so much longer than your English version. This is because formal Spanish is often much wordier, so it takes up more space. This is expected in the Spanish-speaking world.

Write a perfect Spanish resume

The above tips on how to write a Spanish resume should allow any applicant to stand out amid the competition. You need to ensure you have the correct information, layout, and phrases that a Spanish employer is looking for. Once the resume is complete, the best thing to do is read over it, get a native speaker to proofread it, then read it over again for good measure. Keep making changes until the resume is perfect, and there’s no doubt it will impress potential employers. iScribo helps you to write properly your cv in Spanish.

Categories
Writing in Spanish

7 Useful Tips When Trying to Learn Spanish Online

When attempting to learn Spanish, you should be enthusiastic and

have the drive to succeed.

The following are some helpful tips on your journey, learning Spanish:

Tip #1: A lack of time is not an acceptable excuse

There’s a common justification for individuals who don’t learn Spanish but wish they could. They claim they don’t have enough time to learn, study, and exercise. Well, it’s just an excuse… 

You don’t have to sit down and spend hours studying Spanish and performing exercises all the time. There are hundreds of online tutorials that include audio content. 

Whilst waiting for a bus or working out you could listen to your favourite audio course on your MP3 device or CD player. It’s that easy.

For a change, switch to a Spanish channel and attempt to figure out the meaning of the words and phrases you hear. Get a Spanish magazine or browse a Spanish website, for example.

So, don’t create any excuses. Even if you don’t have much time, you can study Spanish online.

Moving on to Tip #2: Learn the fundamentals

Many individuals begin studying hundreds of Spanish words and phrases to become Spanish vocabulary experts… but guess what? 

When they speak Spanish with someone, they only employ a tiny proportion of their vocabulary. I believe it is more important to study and understand the fundamental words or phrases, as well as their grammar and pronunciation. 

Then, if you choose, you can go on to study the remaining thousands of Spanish words.

Sometimes, teachers attempt to teach you old-fashioned Spanish, grammatical rules that can be not enough when speaking Spanish. You must learn current Spanish. 

Learn the fundamental words and phrases, master their pronunciation and writing norms, and only then will you be able to extend your vocabulary.

Tip #3: Avoid worrying about the Spanish language

What I mean is that you shouldn’t be concerned with why the Spanish language and words are written, formed, or spoken the way they are. 

Leave it alone. 

That’s the way it is. You can’t call the language’s origins or definitions into dispute. You could, but it will not help you learn Spanish. 

So don’t ask yourself, your tutors, or your Spanish lover why a word is spoken or written a certain way, or what the meaning of a specific word or phrase is, and so on.

Concentrate on acquiring the language in its current form. Don’t spend your time debating the wordings.

Tip #4: Of course, motivation is key

Okay, so you’re driven and excited when you start studying Spanish online. But what happens after a few weeks?

If you start losing interest in learning Spanish, plan a vacation to Spain or a Spanish-speaking nation, or if you can’t afford it, try visiting a Spanish-speaking neighbourhood, a Spanish market, or a Spanish restaurant. 

This will be beneficial to you and will encourage your drive to continue learning and studying.

You might perhaps look for a Spanish-speaking partner or a buddy who speaks Spanish well.

This should greatly urge you to keep going and learning Spanish. If you have a Spanish-speaking friend or lover you will notice a significant improvement in your ability to acquire Spanish words or phrases.

And if that person cares about you, he or she will make an effort to enhance your self-esteem and keep you going. 

When it comes to learning Spanish, it’s all about the drive.

Let us now move on to tip #5: You have every right to make errors

I encourage you to make as many errors as possible. And then create more, and more, and more. After that, please feel free to create even more errors. If you want to study Spanish online, this is the easiest method to get started. 

However, there is a catch. You must be able to admit and learn from your errors. And try not to make the same errors over and over again.

If you start making errors when speaking Spanish, writing a sentence in Spanish, or trying to pronounce anything in Spanish and realize you made a mistake, your brain recalls that mistake and it’s simpler for you not to make that mistake again.

So, please don’t be discouraged if you make errors when learning Spanish. That’s how it works.

Tip #6: Pretend you’re a parrot

You should, without a doubt. Parrots, these amazing birds, have a very great memory because they can reproduce what they hear and pronounce it the way they hear it. 

When attempting to learn Spanish, acting like a parrot will be beneficial. 

Begin by imitating.

Remember the Spanish lover or buddy I mentioned? Imitate your friend’s pronunciation and how he or she employs Spanish words or phrases.

If you go to a Spanish market or a Spanish restaurant, pay attention to how the Spanish-speaking individuals use the language.

Interacting with fluent Spanish speakers and behaving like a parrot is a valuable skill if you use self-learning techniques.

And last Tip #7: Find the Right Lesson

Finally, if you are interested in studying Spanish online and want to purchase some interactive courses, you should be aware that not all classes are created equal.

They all employ distinct strategies and approaches. 

And not all strategies are appropriate for everyone. So it’s best to try them first, then evaluate whether it’s the correct lesson or method for you… and then go on. Alternatively, you can use iScribo, it will make you write like a professional Spanish speaker or at the very least, not like a fool.

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Writing in Spanish

5 Rules to Learn the Use of Commas in Spanish

The use of commas in Spanish is not an easy task to perform, in fact, many Spanish speakers find it difficult to use them correctly. People often worry if they are using commas correctly, but if your answer is ‘sometimes’, we recommend you to read this guide to learn a little about when to use a comma in Spanish.

Let’s start with the basics: punctuation marks

The comma is a punctuation mark (,) that usually indicates a short pause in a sentence. Now, learn some rules to use it properly and master the comma in Spanish grammar.

Rule 1: Never use a comma between subject and verb

Yes, you heard it right. This is a very common mistake when translating from English to Spanish as it is frequently used in English. As the Fundéu says, this is a criminal comma.

Rule 2: Use a comma after a vocative

A vocative is a noun that we use to call or name the speaker. Don’t forget to use the comma even if it is a short sentence: Hola, Pedro, te echo de menos (Hey, Pedro, I miss you).

Rule 3: Use a comma after an interjection

Interjections are words that are used to express feelings, reactions or sounds that we want to imitate. It is very important not to forget the comma in these cases: Ay, me he hecho daño en la pierna (Ouch, I hurt my leg).

Rule 4: Use a comma to separate elements of the same sentence

This is perhaps one of the easiest rules of punctuation, but… It’s also tricky! Never use a comma when the elements are complete in a sentence, as the last element is introduced by a conjunction (y, e, o, u, ni): No le gusta el fútbol, el baloncesto ni el tenis (He doesn’t like football, basketball or tennis).

Rule 5: Use a comma when circumstantial complements precede the verb

This rule applies to simple sentences unless they are very short: En esos campos de pasto, los días eran idílicos (In those grassy fields, the days were idyllic), but En tu casa no puedo dormir (I can’t sleep in your house). Note that if what precedes the verb is any other complement, such as direct, indirect, regulative, etc., a comma should never be used: Muy contento estás tú (I can tell you feel very happy).

How difficult is to use punctuation marks!

Yes, we know. Punctuation marks, particularly the use of commas, are among the most difficult elements of a language to master. But, if you do manage to master them, along with prepositions, you can consider yourself a bilingual Spanish speaker. Don’t give up! iScribo is here for you to improve your writing while learning Spanish grammar properly.

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Writing in Spanish

The Best Phrases to Use When Writing a Letter in Spanish

Letter writing has been around in one form or another ever since the days of the first cloth parchment paper. In recent times, we’ve seen it go digital in the form of email and text. Despite advances in technology, however, there are still precious few people who know how to write a well-structured, professional email – especially in another language like Spanish.

It’s a subtle art and an important skill to learn. Essential to becoming such a multilingual person of letters is to understand that there are differences in what words to use depending on the formality of the letter. We’ve compiled a guide to help overcome these obstacles – one that provides the best phrases for writing a letter in Spanish.

Informal letters

Greetings

When writing a letter in Spanish, you’ll always start with a greeting. For informal letters, you can use any one of the two:

  • Hola: Similar to if you were casually greeting someone on the street in Spain, informal letters can begin with a simple hola. It translates very simply to ‘hi’, ‘hi there’, or ‘hey’ and is the most basic way to start an informal letter. An added bonus is that hola easy to remember because it doesn’t have any differences between masculine and feminine.
  • Querido/Querida: is slightly more formal than hola, but you wouldn’t use it in a formal letter. It translates as ‘dear’, but the adjective’s ending will depend on the gender of the person to whom you are writing. You can also use the plural form when writing to a group of people, such as ‘Mis queridos amigos’, or ‘My dear friends’.

Body text

For informal letters, it’s really up to the writer as to which phrases he or she wants to use. Setting a casual tone is fine, so feel free to say what you like. Here are some common phrases to consider:

  • Te escribo porque – I’m writing to you because…
  • ¿Cómo te va? – How are you doing?
  • Saluda a tu familia de I parte – Say hello to your family
  • Me alegró mucho recibir noticias tuyas – It was lovely to hear from you.
  • Espero que estés bien – Hope you’re doing well
  • Tanto tiempo sin hablarnos – Long time no talk

Valedictions

There are many more ways to end an informal Spanish letter than there are greetings. That aside, here are some of the most common ones:

  • Besos y abrazos: This is great when you want to say goodbye to a loved one, as it literally means ‘hugs and kisses.’ It’s also quite a common farewell at the end of English-language letters.
  • Afectuosamente: Similar to the above, afectuosamente is a loving farewell typically reserved for family and friends. It translates to ‘yours, affectionately’, and it’s traditional to finish the phrase with the name of the person sending the letter.
  • Saludos: This goodbye is useful in informal letters for people the writer isn’t close to, such as acquaintances. It simply means ‘greetings’ and finishes the letter off nicely.

Formal letters

For formal letters, it’s important to ensure your Spanish is perfect because it’s a reflection of the professionalism of the writer. Never use slang, and always double-check infinitives before sending.

Greetings

Similar to when drafting an informal letter, there are two main opening phrases you can use at the beginning. Choose between these formal Spanish phrases:

  • A quien pueda interesar: It’s best to use this phrase at the beginning of a letter when the recipient’s name is unknown. It translates to ‘to whom it may concern.’ It’s typically the easier option when feminine and masculine infinitives are confusing to the writer.
  • Estimado/Estimada: Although querido is an informal Spanish word for ‘dear’, estimado means the same thing but can also be used in formal letters. It’s best accompanied by señor or señora and then the recipient’s last name. Be sure to remember to use the correct ending for the recipient’s gender.

Body text

The phrases used in a formal letter will depend on the message the writer is trying to communicate. However, when in doubt it’s best to use usted instead of throughout the text to show the recipient respect. Here are some examples of popular formal Spanish phrases used in letters:

  • Adjunto encontrará – Enclosed you will find
  • Les escribo para informarles – I am writing to inform you (plural)
  • Quedo a la espera de sus noticias – I look forward to hearing from you
  • Por favor no dude en contactarme si necesita más información – Please do not hesitate to contact me if you require any further information
  • Gracias por su asistencia con este asunto – Thank you for your assistance in this matter

Closing

There is a large selection of polite and professional farewells you can use to end a formal letter. Here are some of the most popular options:

  • Saludos cordiales: This farewell is best when you want to wish the recipient well. It translates to ‘warm regards’ and is one of the best ways to end a formal letter.
  • Atentamente/Cordialmente: Another polite way to end the letter is with this phrase, which means ‘yours sincerely’ or ‘yours faithfully’ and typically goes before the writer’s name.
  • Muchas gracias: And if you’d like to thank the recipient while signing off, use this phrase, which simply means ‘thank you very much.’

Informal and formal letter examples

Now it’s time to put these phrases together. Below are some examples you can use as a framework when writing a letter in Spanish:

Informal example

Spanish:

Hola, Jose:

Me alegró mucho recibir noticias tuyas. ¿Vas a la fiesta de cumpleaños de Patricia? ¡Me encantaría verte!

Besos y abrazos.

Óscar.

English:

Hey Jose,

It was lovely to hear from you. Are you going to Patricia’s birthday party? Would be great to see you!

Hugs and kisses,

Oscar

Formal example

Spanish:

Estimado Sr. González:

Gracias por su rápida respuesta. Adjunto encontrará una copia de la solicitud, junto a otros documentos informativos. Por favor no dude en contactar conmigo si necesita más información. Quedo a la espera de recibir noticias suyas tan pronto como le sea posible.

Atentamente.

Cecilia López.

The importance of letters

Writing a letter in Spanish doesn’t have to be difficult – and with the right words, it will always lead to success. However, there’s one principal thing to keep in mind if you’re trying to appear professional: it is vital to use formal Spanish phrases. If you employ the above recommendations, rest assured that you will do no wrong. So, break out that pen and paper and send a letter today with iScribo.

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