Review writing is a form of writing where an individual articulates their opinion on a topic. Review writing is well-known in the literary field. Book reviews are academically valued by the publishers and the authors.
Reviews of books are often used by the readers to gain an insight into the topic of the book. But review writing gradually progressed from literary texts to films, theatre performances, painting exhibitions. In today’s world, review writing is applied in a much broader sense. The topic can be anything from food to the newest supermarket.
In simple words, a review is a person’s honest opinion on a subject. However, that opinion requires substantiation. The review writer needs to give examples from within the topic to justify their perspective expressed in the review.
A review is not an informal record of subjective ponderings on a topic. It is a form of writing that involves the methodical expression of personal inferences and corresponding explanations for each conclusion. Reviews are not to be confused with summaries. As because in a review, the focus is on the review writer’s observations and explanations.
Reviews on literary works like stories, novels, and plays, and films never include the climax. But a summary has a short version of the entire plot of a story or movie. Hence, it is essential to understand that a review requires critical thinking and is a well-written piece of content.
The Elements Involved in Review Writing
Review writing takes time and effort. A review writer needs to take a few things into account to write a proper review. The multiple facets that are involved in review writing are enlisted below:
- Factual Information:
The review is written on a topic. The writer needs to research details about the subject. For example, if a review writer reviews a text then, author details, publisher details, place of publication, and other details related to the book are significant. These details are featured in the review, and mistakes cannot be afforded while writing the factual data. In the case of online resources, it is crucial to double-check the publication details from credible websites.
- External Resources and Citations:
While writing a review, an individual can use references for comparison purposes. The use of any external resource for comparative study requires proper citation for each external resource. Apart from that, the quotations or information that is used from the reviewed topic needs in-text citations.
- The Temperament of the Audience:
The review writer is writing the review for the audience. The audience can be the general public or experts. Depending on the type of audience, the reviewer shapes the review. The tone and writing style of it also differs depending upon the audience.
A slightly informal tone is acceptable while writing reviews targeted at the general public. But, critical reviews that are to be presented to an expert committee need to be formal.
- Avoid Plagiarism:
It is vital to avoid copied content in a review because it is an original piece of writing. Plagiarism in any form in a review makes the review dubious. In the virtual arena, critical reviews are pretty common in the form of blog posts and articles.
Writers need to safeguard their reviews by adding the copyright tag on the review. Unauthorized copying is quite rampant in the virtual platform. Hence, as a review writer, it is not enough to stay away from committing plagiarism. It is also vital to scan the review with a plagiarism scanner for unethical copying.
The Advantages of Writing Reviews
Review writing is a good writing exercise that helps budding writers in very many ways. Many educational institutes set review writing assignments for students. So, that they can reap the benefits of writing review. The prime advantages of practicing review writing are discussed below:
- Enhancement of Reading Skills:
The task of a reviewer is to give an honest opinion. It is not possible to form an opinion without reading or understanding the subject. Reading is not simply reading the lines that are there in a text. It is also about reading the meaning of empty spaces.
A proficient reader can provide sensible opinions with justifications. Therefore, review writers develop the skill of reading consciously and critically.
- Improvement of Critical Thinking Ability:
Opinions are very significant. The presence of opinions implies that the reader is consciously going through a topic. The cognitive skills of a person are greatly enhanced while reading or understanding a topic.
The observations that are made by a person help to form a conclusion. The conclusion is the subjective inference of the reader, and critical thinking ability is necessary for drawing meaningful inferences. Hence, review writers sharpen their critical faculty by indulging in review writing.
- Broadening of the Vocabulary:
Review writing is impossible without suitable words. Word choice is pretty essential while writing reviews. A well-written review does not accept unnecessary use of diminutives and derogatory phrases.
However, using simplistic expressions without adding details does not lead to a proper review. Thus, review writers need to develop their vocabulary and polish their critical reviews with suitable adjectives that inadvertently help in adding new words to the individual’s vocabulary.
- Inducing Originality:
Reviews are individual opinions that are not copied from others. Compare and contrast mode is used in a review, but it is not done without subjective inferences. Plagiarism is often observed where people tend to copy information from others.
However, review writing is about the exploration of individual opinions. It helps writers to develop a stance after reading or observing a subject. Originality is the prerequisite for writing a review. So with review writing, people grow the habit of creating original content.
Review writing is a process that helps in expressing one’s opinion methodically. The substantiation of subjective critiques helps in sharpening the writing and critical thinking abilities of the writer. Hence, it is a suitable writing exercise that helps in opinion formation and articulation.