Why many people don’t believe that I can stay up all night just to finish a gripping James Patterson novel will never make sense to me?
Maybe I am the naive one. I could be the one with a problem. Or maybe not.
See, I am a sucker for good content writing. If a text catches my attention, I will make sure to read it through to the end. My library is teeming with novels that I have read and re-read because I was simply drawn to them.
On the other hand, writing is something that definitely flows out of my system so seamlessly. I don’t have to force it. This has contributed to me publishing a book and starting this blog just a while ago.
But you may be wondering, isn’t writing so boring? Like, do you just sit there and type all day?
Truth be told, it can get to that point.
However, there are simple steps I follow that make writing ridiculously and exceptionally easy. I also borrow some of these tips when I blog (since I think blogging and writing are a tad bit contrasting) and I have found them crazy helpful!
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1.DON’T TRY TO IMPRESS A LOT
If I was writing a thesis for a panel of learned professors, you bet I would spice it up with all kinds of vocabulary and grammar. I would ensure that it bombarded them with pompous words from the first to the last.
I read a lot of articles on the web and the minute I cannot understand a sentence because it has been filled with nonsensical vocabulary, I immediately stop reading more.
This is because most writers don’t realize that their copies are going to be read by people spanning every socioeconomic group. There is no need to scare away readers with too much jargon that puts them off from reading.
2. HAVE A FORMAT
Every good content writer knows that having a good format will help their writing gain uniformity. A standard piece of writing should include:
- An introduction
- The body
- An ending
Most writers, if not all, know these three basic stages of writing. But the problem comes with how each stage is crafted.
Your introduction is the door mat to your content. If you manage to grasp your reader’s attention, then well done. 🙂 Conversely, if you drive them away with a confusing introduction, you won’t be able to effectively put across your argument.
Ensure that you highlight the major points of your article in this part. In the case of an essay, you have the green light to express your views and raise your argument.
If you are writing a novel, this is the part that contains a huge chunk of your content. Keep your reader interested by adding suspense and other stylistic devices without overusing.
Having a convincing conclusion to your article/essay/novel is very key to how well-put your content is.
A great conclusion rounds off your writing and gives a bit of relief to the reader after reading the article’s body. Here are 12 Conclusion Examples to give you some inspiration.
3. THINK IN POINT FORM
Trust me, when I am writing my blog posts, I tend to type in several huge paragraphs before I look back and realize, “Oops! I need to fragment!”.
I usually put myself in my reader’s shoes and ask myself:
- Is it easy to the eye? Am I straining to read it?
- Can I scope my content in a minute?
- Do the main points stand out?
- Is there a summary I can refer to?
For bloggers, it is necessary to grill your content in this manner because your readers won’t follow along religiously unless they are bookmarking it for future reading.
And they may forget! 🙁
When it comes to writing, it comes down to whether you are able to pass information in the least words. The rest is just fluff. (Remember the thesis?)
For example, here is a cut-out of a paragraph in one of my manuscripts:
“As the Californian breeze swept down the pier and through his brown hair, Jet could only think of how icy-cold the water beneath his clunky boots was. His instincts told him it was freezing and that his deathly jump would cost his life. Jet had learned something, in all his years as a professional scuba-diver – his instincts were never wrong.”
Can we add a little fluff and note the difference? Don’t mind if I do.
“As the Californian land breeze swept furiously down the rickety pier and through his mane of brown hair, Jet’s only thought was how icy-cold the raging water beneath his clunky Timberland boots was. His razor-sharp instincts told him it was freezing and that his perilous jump would kill him in an instant! Nevertheless, Jet had learned something integral in all his years as a seasoned scuba-diver – his instincts never failed him.”
Easy, easy. It is just a manuscript! But, boy, did we add some fluff in it!
Some of you will argue that the second paragraph is way more thrilling than the first. I agree. It is more descriptive and sharpens the imagery in your mind.
On the other hand, I am wondering, Can’t I tell the same story using fewer words that are easily understandable? In short, can I be more of a considerate writer and less of a cocky one?
Whether it’s blogging, or essay writing, or novel writing, try and skip to the main point without taking your reader to the North Pole and back. 🙂
4. DON’T RELY ON BRAINPOWER
I am not telling you to be dumb or anything like that.
I have been in those sticky situations when I am brainstorming an idea of an article or a manuscript and then I hit rock bottom. Nothing. My mind is simply clogged or I just need a coffee refill.
Therefore, I end up just writing whatever comes to my mind as I tell myself, “Owen, you are killing it! They are going to love it!”. As time goes by, I have learned to rely on meticulous planning rather than spontaneous inspiration.
That’s for artists!
As a writer, you need to understand the importance of thoroughly outlining your storyline (plot/draft). Not only does it help you become more organized, but it helps you question your draft and work on the plot holes.
Plot holes, my friends, are gaps of inconsistency that don’t line properly with the rest of the plot. For those of you that avidly watch movies, especially a series, you are always left wondering why some sequences of events took place and yet they are not contributing to the series itself.
Like a spontaneous romantic scene, or a gun fight, or some comedic banter.
Hands down, writers will never acknowledge the presence of plot holes until they sit back and re-read their drafts. Or wait until the book rolls out to the public and then readers start to critique it.
Plan! Plan! Plan! That’s all.
Now that you know how super easy it is to take thirty minutes of your day to progress in your blog draft or your manuscript, it won’t prove a challenge whenever you plan to write.
This is the same advice I have been following in my writing journey and every day I add a chapter to my manuscript doesn’t feel like a burden anymore.
Got any useful writing tips you would like to share? Go ahead and leave a comment! I would love to hear from you.