How To Improve Your Writing

Whether you’re pursuing a career as an entrepreneur, an academic writer, a marketer, or a blogger, few things are more important to your future than polishing your skills as a writer. A verbal pitch can go a long way, but at some point you’re going to have to put your ideas onto paper, or word document, and that’s when a project can get cumbersome. Even the process of corresponding with businesses or corporate financial entities becomes more fluid when you possess solid writing skills. If you’re applying for a Discover student loan, for instance, and you craft a compelling letter to the Executive Account Manager, your chances of success rise significantly higher. With that said, here are few time-weathered strategies for improving your written content:

Organize and outline. Do not start writing until you have a solid outline. This doesn’t just mean a few phrases scribbled in haste. Your outline should act as a guide to every section of your missive. Not only do you want a beginning, middle, and end to the content as a whole, you should work to build in beginnings, middles, and ends, to each individual section as well. This will keep your post feeling organized and on-point. Many papers, blogs and marketing copy go awry because they are disorganized, and because the author didn’t work off of a solid outline. You wouldn’t start building a tower without a blueprint, would you?

Have a thesis, and several sub-theses. Your paper, blog, pitch, or story should have an overall thesis that you are working toward illustrating. All of your points and examples should be supporting this central thesis. You should also have several smaller theses that back up the main one in different ways. If you’re writing a blog post or marketing pitch, your ‘headers’ would be your sub-theses. They are their own points, but work to affirm aspects of your overall point.

Write clearly, concisely, and powerfully. These are three characteristics that are hard to combine. Many people would think that if you write clearly and concisely, you can’t also write powerfully. But writing powerfully doesn’t mean using obtuse metaphors or stringing together Faulkner-like sentences that leave your readers feeling bewildered. Writing powerfully requires that you be clear and concise. Use adjectives sparingly. Be economical with page space. Don’t compare patently human endeavors with poetic cosmic cycles too often.

Being a good writer doesn’t require that you memorize the dictionary or try in vain to imitate classic authors. Being a good writer means scribing in an organized, concise, purpose-driven manner. You must treat the act of writing as craft, with structural components that you constantly work to improve upon.

By Jennifer Smith


Essay plan composing

Once you have planned your pre-writing time, you have to compose a plan of your future essay. Some people consider it useless, but then they find a surprising thing – it’s very difficult to concentrate on a chosen topic without plan or at the very least draft of plan.

The plan wouldn’t take much of your time if you decide exactly how to disclose your topic. In this case, describe the very essence of the theme in the middle of work, and don’t forget to outline how it appeared and what the consequences it would have. Let’s look at writing a plan for a voluminous example.

So, you need to write an essay about a specific political situation. In fact, now it does not matter whether your essay is strictly scientific or just literary. We need plan in both cases. In order to develop the subject extensively, we have to determine the prerequisites of the political situation and the consequences that it will have. Accordingly, an example of the plan will look that way.

  1. Introduction (here you are writing about what you want to say by this work: i.e. to prove that the political situation is deplorable, or, conversely, carries a lot of potential)
  2. Prerequisites of the political situation
  3. Description of the political situation
  4. Consequences of the situation
  5. Output (it has many similarities with an introduction: you have to say with certainty whether your assumption is confirmed about the poor situation or its high prospects).

There is still a secret in the essay. Well, if the text is practically formed in your mind and you need plan as a fence to prevent your thoughts spreading out and covering all unnecessary areas. But if you have faint idea of what to write, then extensive plan would help you. There special emphasis is put on sub-items. An example of such a plan looks like this:

  1. Entry
  2. Prerequisites of the political situation
    • Economic prerequisites
    • Prerequisites in the form of the influence of world structures
    • Social willingness
  3. Description of the political situation
    • Social changes within situation
    • Leaders and ideologists of changes
    • Alleged errors of leaders
  4. 4. Consequences of the situation
    • Consequences of the situation for the people
    • Consequences of the situation for the industry
    • Consequences of the situation for the world community

You still consider writing an essay difficult? But take a look, you have written it yet. All you have to do is only to fill this box with words and get an excellent job.


Online Writing and Editing Tips

In the online world, success is all about generating traffic. Traffic is measured in terms of “hits” (the number of times your page is accessed by someone on the Internet). Your hit count is a measure of how many potential customers or readers you are reaching and is also used by advertisers to determine where they choose to buy ad space. The better written your content, the more likely readers are to return to your site again and again, thereby improving your hit count. But beware; writing for an online audience is very different than writing for a print audience.

Writing Advice

Online visitors don’t actually read, they scan. Online articles must be brief, informative and attention-grabbing to be effective. Headlines should be short and should clearly inform the reader of the article’s topic. Avoid exclamation points, jokes and puns in your headline unless you are writing a humor column. Use a conversational tone, but don’t be sloppy. Avoid slang, jargon or undefined abbreviations if you are writing for a professional site. Personal bloggers have more latitude in terms of language and tone, but the most respected bloggers adhere to professional rules. Remember that new readers will likely find you by entering one or more keywords into their search engine. Scatter the keywords a searcher is most likely to use throughout your text.

Editing Advice

Grammar, spelling and punctuation still count. So does accuracy. Check your writer’s facts, particularly in scholarly settings. Online researchers typically consult more resources than print researchers. Literate and correct content implies professionalism and expertise—two things that will keep researchers coming back to your site in the future. Rein in flowery writers and those fond of dependant clauses. Two short sentences make for better online reading than one long one. Base your stylistic corrections on the approved source guide for your site (Chicago, MLS, SLS, AP, etc.) Monitor keyword saturation. Gratuitous use of keywords can actually cause your search engine rating to drop.

General Advice

The rules for online content are different than those for print content. Keep sentences and paragraphs short. Never underline a word or phrase unless it is an online link to another site. Always write in the active tense and use the fewest words possible to get your meaning across. “Experts consider blueberries a healthful fruit” is preferable to “blueberries are considered to be a healthful fruit by most experts.” Assume your audience can read at a ninth-grade level unless your site is directed at highly educated or technical audiences.

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