4 Tips to Improve Your Writing Skills Today

You may have been writing all your life, or perhaps you’re a newbie. Either way, you can take a few simple steps to improve your writing skills today!

Improve your writing today with four easy-to-implement, actionable steps! TablerPartyOfTwo.com

1. WRITE CONVERSATIONALLY
The days of formal writing are long gone when it comes to connecting with readers. Conversational speech simply doesn’t follow the rules of formal writing.

Readers want to connect with a person, not with a business. They want authenticity and relationship. The real YOU… not an online version of you.

The best way to accomplish conversational writing is to write just like you talk. In fact, pretend you are talking to a close friend.

I think this is actually more difficult for those of us who were schooled in writing. We know all our grammar and punctuation, but writing in a conversational tone isn’t second nature. But with time, practice, and reading the excellent conversational writing of others, you can β€” and will β€” improve!

Action: Speak what you want to communicate into your phone recorder. Pretend like you are sharing with a friend. Notice the words you use. The inflections in your voice. When you pause and what you emphasize. Now… write it down!

 

2. GO SHORTER
The rules of effective writing have dramatically changed since my days as a student at Culver Academies (and later at Southern Methodist University).

Back then, we were given brownie points for longer, more complex sentences with grander words. This just doesn’t work with today’s online audience. They tend to get bored and lost while negotiating too many commas and clauses.

Today’s reader likes to scan, scroll and quickly read concise information. The lesson for writers? Write shorter paragraphs. Write shorter sentences. Write shorter words.

Action: Review the last article or post you wrote. Consider if any paragraphs could be broken into two. Can you make any long sentences into shorter ones? Can you replace any big, flowery words with shorter, more concise words?

 

3. WRITE WITH ABANDON, EDIT WITH RUTHLESSNESS
When inspiration comes, just start writing! Get your thoughts on paper (or on your hard drive) without worrying about perfection. Don’t stifle your gift! Just let the thoughts flow out onto the page.

When you are all done, it’s time to get ruthless. Edit carefully, be a stickler for grammar, and eliminate any words that are not needed.

Then, let it sit. Come back to it at a later date and edit one more time. You’ll undoubtedly find room for improvement.

Action: Read your post out loud to catch errors. Have a friend or a freelancer proof read your writing. 

 

4. ELIMINATE DISTRACTIONS
Hardly a moment goes by when I’m not receiving an alert of some kind.

Most recently, I added Periscope to my social media mix. I’m in love with it! But not so much with the constant notifications that someone has gone live. 

Then there are my alerts announcing the endless emails I receive daily or my tweets that have been retweeted.

I’ve recently discovered the freedom of writing without the distractions. It’s amazing! I’m able to complete my thoughts and think more deeply about my subject. 

Action: Turn off all notifications (including phone ringer) when it’s time to write.

Do you have any favorite writing tips? Please share below!

xoxo,

Andrea Tabler | TablerPartyofTwo.com

 

Andrea Tabler

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Comments

  1. Great advice that I totally agree with!

  2. I write complicated tutorials on using a day planner. Going shorter definitely makes them easier to follow. Still, I do longer stories to break things up.

  3. Those were surely some neat advice. Letting the thoughts freely and writing without distractions is the trick.

  4. This is a great write up!!! Thank you for sharing at Share it One More Time…Tammy

  5. These are great tips! I would love if you would stop by and share on my Friday Favorites linkup!

  6. This is great info to me. I am such a bad writer and hopefully I can put this to great use in my blogging!! Here from Weekend Retreat.

  7. As a blogger, I’m always looking for ways to improve my writing. Thanks for sharing! πŸ™‚ Stopping by from the Pinworthy Projects party.

  8. Great advise! Thank you for sharing you tips with us at the Brag About It Link Party!
    Have a great weekend!
    ~Laurie

  9. Great tips, I am new to blogging and could really utilize some of these tools. Particularly shorter more concise posts, it’s hard to cut down!

  10. Great tips! Plan to implement these! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Great tips and so true regarding the short paragraphs and sentences. Life is so busy, pretty soon we’ll be writing in acronyms, because ‘ain’t nobody got time for that’, lol! Thanks for sharing and happy Monday!

  12. Love these tips! I have had such a busy summer and my blog time took a hit. Now when I sit down to write I have a huge case of writers block..but I think it is mostly because I am so focused on ALL of the posts I need to write, need to catch up on, editing photos and everything else that I cant focus on just that one post I am writing. Its hard to get back into the swing of things..so my tip is dont take a break no matter what lol!

    • Oh… Jess… I so get that! It’s like me and CrossFit. Wish I hadn’t have taken a break. It’s painful! I KNOW you’ll get back in the swing of things SOON!

  13. Wonderful tips! I definitely need to work on “write with abandon, edit with ruthlessness!” I edit while I go and I think I should work on saving it until after. Found you via Wine’d Down Wednesdays! Glad I connected!

  14. Hi – Your article was featured in Mari Smith’s “Social Scoop” Newsletter this week, which is how I landed here. Great article, and congrats on the share!

    • Thank you SO MUCH, Amy, for letting me know! It’s been a mystery since Friday. πŸ™‚ Have a blessed day!

  15. Excellent tips.

  16. Great article! And, yes, its true! When I am reading, I like information broken up into chunks, main points highlighted, short sentences and short paragraphs. I have to remember to do that in my writing too!

  17. I love these tips. I think speaking it into a recorder then writing it down sounds like the perfect exercise for me. Thank you!

  18. Thanks for all the great tips! I know that for me the hardest thing is avoiding distractions. It gets a little hard with 5 kids and a husband:)

  19. What great tips! Pinned and tweeted. Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday, hope to see you again next week!

  20. Andrea, you are so right. I love notifications when I need them but when it comes to serious productivity, they are a distraction!

    Excellent advice here πŸ™‚

    Sinea β™₯

  21. Excellent points! I’ve started rereading my posts to make sure they are conversational, interesting, and not stuffy with too many words. It’s a tough adjustment to find the right way to write for a blog!

  22. Great post! I definitely needed the reminder! I do tend to get gabby when writing and have to widdle my posts down. I would probably save a ton of time editing if I were to keep it short to begin with lol …

  23. I saw your post on a link up party and it caught my eye. Thank you! These are great writing tips that seem easy to follow. Have a wonderful weekend πŸ™‚

  24. Thanks a ton for these amazing tips should be taken care while writing blog post πŸ™‚

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