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How to improve your writing skills

15 ways to improve your writing skills

Learning different tricks to improve your writing skills is not as difficult as you might think. From sending emails to creating presentations, writing is a daily occurrence in many professions and industries. Writing skills go beyond grammar and spelling.

Accuracy, clarity, persuasiveness, and several other factors play an important role in ensuring that your writing conveys the correct message. It takes practice to become a better writer. You are already practicing as you write a lot. 

Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, you write your thoughts out more often than you think. At the very least, post on social media, update your resume and LinkedIn profile, message your friends, create reports, presentations, newsletters, etc. if your job requires it. And the list doesn’t end here.

Writing, like any other skill, can be improved with time and practice. You need some strategies for developing your own written communication. Here we have listed the 15 best ways to improve your writing skills.

1. Know the basic principles of writing

As in most fields, good writing skills are based on basic principles. Understanding these basic rules will help you develop your own voice and writing personality. Rules are made to be broken, so you can even find ways to gain poetic freedom if it helps the writer’s story move forward.

However, before sticking to spelling rules, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the basics of English grammar, punctuation, and spelling. 

Every good writer has his Strunk and White, The Elements of Style bookmarks and a good dictionary on his bookshelf or computer.

When it comes to preparing non-fiction books for publication, journalists and news writers, including bloggers, see AP Stylebook

Writers involved in academic writing, business writing, and book production, on the other hand, typically use the Chicago Manual of Style, APA, MLA, or custom style guides.

It is optional to memorize all the nuances of these style books as they are detailed, varied, and lengthy, but all authors are familiar with these guides, know how to use them, and We encourage you to refer to them often.

2. Read a lot

It’s no surprise that most great writers are avid readers. The more you read, the more you notice different voices in the intonation of the language, the rhythm of the text, and the practiced prose. Use online or paper dictionaries to check word meanings and expand your vocabulary.

Make a habit of reading every day. Read the daily newspaper, and pick up a glossy business magazine from time to time. Follow blogs that interest you and check blogs that don’t interest you. Dive into the pages of an unknown genre. 

If you are a fan of crime stories, you can try a different genre like romance. If you’re a die-hard sci-fi fan of his, see if you can find some intriguing historical fiction.

 The goal is to familiarize yourself with as many variations of writing style as possible and start finding your own writing style and voice.

3. Conduct research

Aside from plagiarizing someone else’s work, nothing undermines your credibility like not doing your homework. 

Research shapes multiple perspectives to look at a single situation and it is one of the most important factors in the best writing skills.

Many writers take shortcuts to the facts in their zeal to complete a blog post (or a large newspaper article). This can range from hastily fumbling stats incorrectly to laziness in sources or attributes. 

Not only will this get you in trouble with editors/content marketing managers/other bosses, it will also make you look like an amateur.

Conducting deep research always provides people to know something deep and significant inspiring people look beyond confined boundaries.

4. Sketch the solid line first

One of the hardest parts of creating crisp, the clean text is organizing your thoughts so that you can write with purpose and clarity. A good writer creates an outline of what they plan to write before committing a set of content to a paper or word-processing document.

Whether you’re writing a 500-word blog post or a 45,000-word book, an outline is a roadmap you need to organize your thoughts, uncover gaps in your research and presentations, and refine your message. 

Start with an introduction. Write down a few words that summarize the article, blog, or first chapter. This is just an overview, so don’t worry about finding the perfect words to express your thoughts. 

Then create some sections. Limit each section to one idea or point you want to make. Fill in the blanks with bulleted ideas for what you want each section to cover. Then look at the outline and rearrange the sections so that your thoughts flow logically.

5. Craft a clear message

Think about why you are writing about a particular topic. How do you want your readers to perceive information from your article?

Try condensing your message into an elevator pitch. This is a 30-second description of what you want to say in your writing. Work on this speech until you understand it. Creating a clear message before you start writing can save a lot of time and wasted effort. 

6. Be candid and stay on track

Be careful how you express your thoughts. You can lose your audience if you try to share too much information. Stick to the key facts and necessary descriptive phrases. If a block of the text seems too informative, it probably is. 

Try to use short sentences and avoid unnecessary words. New writers often insert adverbs that overly complicate their sentences. Instead of saying something is really pretty, just say it’s beautiful.

7. Experiment with word choices

A thesaurus is your friend. Use this. One of the great joys of writing is playing with the language and finding the words that perfectly capture your thoughts.

 Get out of your comfort zone and find new ways to express yourself. Beautiful things can be gorgeous, stunning, or glamorous.

While great for expanding your vocabulary, avoid using filler words that don’t add meaning. For example, say “We agree with this idea” instead of “We absolutely agree with this idea.” The adverb “absolutely” is a filler word that does not reinforce the message.

8. Remove filler words and phrases

Some words always come up in our sentences, but they don’t contribute much. These filler words and phrases sometimes add color and meaning, but if used often, they will only cause confusion. 

9. Express your personality in writing

The most effective way to develop your own writing style is to be yourself. Reveal your personality in your writing.

Stick to authentic, organic tones and formulas. Don’t be afraid to throw in revealing anecdotes when and where it makes sense.

You are free to write poetry within reason, provided you are not forced to follow any specific grammatical rules. For example, if you’re from the South, you might want to write a plural form like “y’all” instead of the grammatically correct “you”.

10. Remove overly complex words

Be careful not to use $10 words when $1 words are sufficient. For example, if we describe a place as a ‘city’ or ‘municipality’, should we write ‘community’?

Remember, this is not to show the reader how smart you are, but to convey your knowledge and insight. When in doubt, choose simple words. The use of overly complex words sometimes fades out the beauty and compatibility of your writing.

11.  Empathy for readers

Writing is an efficient and compatible art of communication. Always think of your readers if you are not the only one reading the text.

Ask yourself:

  • Will my readers understand it? 
  • Do they care? 
  • Do you live up to the promises given in the headline and opening sentence to convey a specific idea or information? 

Whether you’re writing creatively or crafting a bad message, you connect with your readers every time you write. 

Approach this relationship with empathy and a clear purpose.

12.  Anticipate audience questions

If you’re writing to an audience about something unfamiliar, think about what questions your audience might ask if they were in a one-on-one conversation. Do your best to anticipate their questions so you can fill in the blanks as you write about your experiences, knowledge, and perspectives.

13. Get feedback 

Asking for feedback, whether it’s an email or an essay, is a great way to learn how others might interpret your writing. Think about what you want the editor to focus on, such as the structure, the conclusion, and the persuasiveness of your arguments.

Talk to a trusted friend, family member, colleague, or trainer. If you are a student, your school also has a Writing Resource Center that you can contact.

You can also consider starting a writing group or taking a writing class. Find writing classes online, at your local community college, or at an independent writing workshop in your city.

14. Realize that first drafts are usually bad

Writing is hard work. It’s a slow process that requires more than one attempt. By definition, a draft is a preliminary version of the final work.

First drafts are usually bad. Sometimes they are really bad. It is expected. The purpose of the first draft is to take your writing from an outline to a better draft or two, polished prose.

15.  Be a Ruthless Editor

Proofreading and editing are integral to sharpening your writing skills. You have to be your own ruthless editor. As you review your draft, look for examples where long sentences can be replaced with short sentences without breaking the rhythm or losing meaning.

 Be a vigilant grammar checker. In addition to using your copy judiciously, take advantage of the built-in grammar and spell-checking features in word processors such as Microsoft Word.

 You can also download Grammarly. It’s a free online office assistant that uses artificial intelligence to point out spelling mistakes and suggest edits.

If you break a grammar rule, do it intentionally, not because you didn’t know there was a mistake. Notice the sentence structure. Keep your paragraphs short, especially if you’re writing for an online audience and trying to improve your website’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

All writers fall in love with their words. It’s normal and unavoidable. Perhaps you can come up with a good-sounding phrase that you would like to use in a particular short story or other text. 

The problem is that the words don’t go with the flow, they don’t communicate their thoughts clearly, and they

 don’t belong to the work at all.

 If your prose seems overly complicated and a little too clever – yes, it should be avoided – or if it doesn’t improve the overall message, remove it. If you’re not sure if something needs to be shortened, read it aloud. Is it clear? it is necessary?

 Does it improve your perspective? If the answer to any of these questions is no, cross out the red line and continue.

Final words

Whether you’re a scientist, product manager, journalist, or entrepreneur, effective writing skills can get your ideas out there. With practice, exposure, and familiarity with the basic rules, you’ll be able to say exactly what you want to say with your sentences.

Writing is an integral part of expressing ourselves. Whether you are preparing for IELTS, TOEFL, essay competition, or college exams 


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