Professional Writing vs. Personal Writing

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Professional Writing vs. Personal Writing

Professional writing can be defined as business writing, media writing, and writing that takes place in or for the workplace. Personal writing is considered writing for any other purpose oriented toward the individual writer’s needs. Advice available on writing dissects the writer’s capabilities to put words out effectively styled for clarity through such items as vocabulary choices and tone of voice, but style issues do not separate professional writing from personal writing. Professional writing and personal writing differs in intention, composition, and exposition.

The intention of professional writing is to reach a targetedarrow-10x10.png section of the population with information, narrative, or commentary. In contrast, personal writing may be created for many reasons, some of which include: notes on the subject matter, self-expression, communication, and organization.  The difference between the intention of professional writing and personal writing is that professional writing is done for a public audience, and personal writing can be defined as a written expression intended for private use, even though private writing is at times made public. The original intention of professional writing is not private. 

Composition and Background Content

Composition is constrained by the standards of types of writing. In professional writing, applying standards for the accepted formats are dictated by the type of writing, editorial input, and template creations. Personal writing does not necessarily follow these composition constraints. Personality and purpose remain stronger determinations in personal writing of the expression of words on the pages, and professional composition standards applied to personal writing are usually afterthoughts. However, the standards of composition embedded in our language structures, (sentences and paragraphs, for example), apply throughout any writing. (Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, 2015).

Background information or story is defined as exposition. Professional writing demands that exposition is supported, relevant, and defined. In personal writing, exposition displays rhetoric, tangential thought and sub-topic explorations. Although these elements can also cross over into literary writing, usually the professional literary writer will only employ personal exposition as part of character building where the character puts forward the personal exposition.

Writing Comparisons Defined

Writing is a craft or art form prevalent throughout culture. Although many people of a culture can both read and write, a definitive line exists between professional writing and personal writing above and beyond the merit of paymentarrow-10x10.png for words. Penning a personal statement is not a professional writing endeavor. On the other hand, professional writing sometimes includes personal details. With the rise of integrated social media, various new formats such as blogs, tweets and on-line Web help challenge the borderlines of professional and personal writing.  Like literary writing, some new writing formats create a blend of professional writing and personal writing within the finished product. To keep the differences between professional writing and personal writing more clearly defined: determine public or private intention, the writing standards that have been created or adhered to, and the purpose of creating exposition material.


1.     Keys to Greatarrow-10x10.png Writing, (Wilbers, Stephen, 2006)

2.     “Vicki Meade’s 20 Keys to Good Writing” (Meade, Vicki, 2015; Meade Communications)

3.     Writing Tutorial Services (Indiana State University, Bloomington, IN)










Publié 24 février, 2015


Writer and Editor for Hire

I am a writer and editor and I have worked in technical writing and training materials for ten years. I also have published various works of short fiction and three books in the fiction arena. Freelance copy editing and articles in business, business IT, energy, and environment are part of my ongoing contribution to the writing community.

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