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Summary Writing

Summary writing is the process of shortening a long text by only highlighting the main ideas and information of the long text. The summary of a long text or a book gives the reader an idea of what information is there in that long text or book. Every book has a small paragraph written on its back which is the summary of the book, providing an idea of the contents of the book. Similarly, a summary is used in many places, including a person's work-life also. Here, we will discuss how to write summary writing in detail.

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Story Summary

A summary is considered as a brief write-up that is used for summing up the whole story in one short paragraph. This short paragraph will contain all the main ideas and essential information about the story. This paragraph is used to give a quick overview of the story or its gist. The summary is responsible for informing the reader about the main points and the actual theme of the actual story. By going through this write-up you will learn how to make a summary of a given story.

The only objective of the summary is to save some valuable time for the reader by giving him an instant short overview of what the whole story is all about. Despite being the shorter version of the story, the summary will contain all the main ideas that will help a reader to understand what exactly is the story about.

How to Write a Summary

Before attempting to write a summary, a student must have basic understanding of it. Without any knowledge, a student is incapable of creating a good summary that can give a good overview. Summary writing seems easy, but it is not until you have understood all the rules and regulations of writing a summary, that you can write one. To write a summary you must follow the following predetermined steps.

Read the Assigned Text or Story Carefully

The best way to summarize a larger text or a story precisely is by understanding the text of the story properly. For understanding a story correctly, a person has to read that piece properly with full focus and sincerity. The reader must read the piece thoroughly without skipping anything. The reader might need more than one reading to be thorough on the piece assigned.

Make Notes of Important Points

After reading the whole piece, the next step is to jot down the main points of the larger text or the story for future reference. This is a crucial step in summarizing as the reader has to identify the points which are important enough to be jotted down. Jotting down points that are not important can affect the quality of the summary, and it is not necessary also as we are not giving a detailed overview through a summary.

Begin Writing Using Your Memory

After jotting down the main points, the next step is to elaborate and expand those points. At this stage, it is suggested that students should elaborate on the points using their memory that they have gained while reading the piece. This will ensure that students will use their own words in the summary despite reading the words that are there in the original piece, which are written by the author. Go through some summary writing examples for Class 10 to get a better insight into it.

Avoid Giving Personal Opinions

While summarizing a text or a story, one must avoid using his or her personal opinions in it. The summary must contain all the facts and figures that are in the assigned text or the story. There should not be any alterations in the writings of the author. One should not interpret the work and add his or her reviews in the summary since he or she is not the critique for that work. One must simply summarize it without any changes.


The last step is to review and evaluate the summary that has been written to identify the mistakes and rectify them to make the summary appropriate. The summary must be reviewed thoroughly before submitting it. While doing the final edit of the summary, there are some points to keep in mind which are as follows.

  • If the assigned piece is a story, then one must ensure that the summary is written following the correct chronological order of the facts as given in the story.

  • One must ensure that a particular point is not repeated twice. Any repeated information must get deleted during the review.

  • The length of the summary must be short. A long summary defies the purpose of the summary.

  • Check for the grammatical errors.   

Summary Writing Format

The following summary format should be followed while summary writing in English.

  • The introductory part

  • A view on the main points of the story or text

  • A conclusion on the whole part 

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. How to Write a Summary of a Story?

Answer: To write an English story summary, one has to first read the assigned story thoroughly to understand the main ideas and information that the story has. Thorough knowledge of the story can help to create an efficient summary. After reading the story, one needs to jot down the important points and main ideas of the story for future reference. After jotting down the points, one can start writing the summary referring to these points. Personal opinions should not be included in the summary, and the message of the author should not get altered or changed.

2. Why Learning Summary Writing is Important for a Student's Career?

Answer: Students need a strong grammatical base to be successful in their career. Summarizing is one of the most effective ways to strengthen the grammatical base of a student. Through summarizing students can learn the various use of nouns, verbs, adverbs, adjectives and can also learn how to interchange words by using synonyms without changing the meaning of the sentence. Hence, they enhance their focusing skills as they extract the main points from the assigned text to be summarized.