Improve Your Writing with These Tips
Are you looking to achieve greater writing competency? Here are three tips to help you accomplish that objective.
Writing Tip # 1:
Hook your readers by stating your central idea up front rather than by opening with a narrative (for informational writing)
If you’re writing to inform readers (as opposed to entertaining them), you should establish the theme of your piece up front. Readers feel anchored into a piece of writing when they know what it’s about from the get-go. If you opt for an indirect route, that is by telling a story that illustrates your theme, you’re more likely to lose readers because you’re obliging them to wait to learn what the piece is about. Take, for example, Wayne Dyer’s book Manifest Your Destiny , which begins with the sentence, “You have the power within you to attract to yourself all that you could ever want.” This superb opening sentence succeeds on two counts: it immediately encapsulates the theme of the book and it encourages people interested in discovering their attractive power to read on. If, however, Dyer had chosen to slowly introduce the theme of his book by telling a story of man who had successfully utilized his powers of attraction, he’d have made it more likely for a reader to get antsy, asking questions like, “What’s the point to this story?” In short, you’re more likely to hook your readers if you get to the point quickly instead of opening with a narrative.
Writing Tip # 2:
Sharpen your typing and spelling skills
Writing is the process of converting your ideas into written form. But ideas can be fleeting, in your brain one moment and gone the next. Enhanced spelling and typing skills improve your ability to articulate your ideas before they fizzle and die. With good typing and spelling skills, you get closer to the writer’s holy grail, which is to type at the speed of thought. Even if you write the old-fashioned way, with pen and paper, a better handle on spelling will greatly enhance the flow of your writing.
Writing Tip # 3:
Read the dictionary
As a writer, you should regularly peruse the dictionary, not shelve it for sporadic reference. When you read the dictionary, you not only expand your vocabulary, you gain a comprehensive understanding of the words you already know. Many familiar words are more flexible than we give them credit for. For example, you can receive a letter, a priest can receive a confession, and a nut can receive a bolt. If you read the dictionary, you’ll become aware of such word flexibility, thus improving your word power and your writing ability.