Simple Tips To Improve Your Writing
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We are going to cover what I believe to be the most important tips to improve your writing. These are simple tips but fundamental to your creativity and ability to stay motivated. I’m no professional writer and don’t ask to see my degree (I don’t have one), but these simple tips have transformed how I approach my writing work. I believe they could do the same for you.
Improve Improve Improve!
I told you these tips are simple, right? How simple of a tip is improve? I’ll answer my own question; very simple, but how?
- Stay motivated
- Keep momentum
- Be scheduled
- Take care of yourself
- Be original
You can sit down and create content whenever, but you won’t be at your best if you’re not motivated. Think about it this way, You can play a pickup basketball game anytime also, but you’re going to have a better chance to win if you’re motivated to do so. The same applies to writing. You could write a blog post about how much you love dogs, and no one would care. When you are motivated to bring your best work to the page and truly convince the readers of your love of dogs, your words will resonate with them.
Whenever I face a lack of creativity or struggle with maintaining the drive to continue my work, I ask myself these two questions.
What do I want?
A good way to find the answer to this question is to ask yourself what you don’t want. For example, I used to punch a clock. My official title was Inventory Control Specialist, a fancy way to say I ordered supplies and managed inventory for a big production facility. It was a pretty good gig, but not what I wanted. I wanted to follow my passions and do what makes me happy. So whenever I’m struggling to put words on paper or decide, “I’m just not feeling it today.” I ask myself, what do I want. Do I want to work in a factory again, or do I want to pursue my dreams?
Your answer to what do I want could be far different than mine, and that’s ok. Maybe you want a reaction; write to stir the pot and thrive on creating a conversation. For the connection, perhaps? You connect better with those online than in person. Or maybe for a follow, you want your opinions heard and constantly dump them onto a social platform to build your voice.
Why am I doing this?
Why write when you could watch tv or stare at your phone? Only you can answer that, but if you care enough to be reading this post in the first place, I imagine you know either why you are writing or why you want to.
You could write to express yourself in a way that you can only do when you are at that desk. Writing is potentially your escape from all the madness of reality. The only time of the day you can truly be original and at peace. Maybe a way to keep you sane because if you kept all of your inner thoughts bottled up, you would go crazy.
Ask yourself what I want and why I am doing this to keep yourself motivated in a world where it’s easy to get lost. Stay motivated and stay locked into your what and why.
You worked really hard. You accomplished more than you set out to this day, and now that it’s time for bed, you can’t wait to fall asleep so you can get up and do it all over again. The alarm clock sounds, and you are salivating at the chance to get back to work on your writing. Has this ever happen to you?
Momentum is crucial in creating quality work and staying motivated. One good day is followed by two, and then by three. Train yourself with your discipline and daily routine to continue this momentum.
Let’s use a different example. You have a great weekend out with friends, maybe have a few (or a lot) of drinks. A great weekend where you stayed up late and ate pizza for dinner on Saturday, followed by pizza for lunch on Sunday.
Now it’s Monday, and time to get back to writing. You wake up, and your eyes are puffy, you’ve got a headache, and the only thing that sounds better than going back to bed is a sausage McMuffin. Somehow you will yourself out of bed and slowly tackle your morning routine. Then what? You sit on the couch to watch just one episode of Law And Order. After you finish your sixth episode, you decide tomorrow you’ll get back to writing. Has this ever happened to you?
Any writer, whether professionally or recreationally, has dealt with both of these scenarios. Remind yourself that a good day is fuel for a good day to come, and a bad day is fuel for a bad day to come.
Being scheduled is one of the most important tips to improve your writing. I’m on the extreme side of the spectrum with this as I need to be scheduled in all aspects of my life. Many people like to live spontaneously, and that’s totally fine; however, in certain aspects, having a schedule is critical to your writing success.
For some, scheduling time is the route to take. For example,
- 7:00–8:00 wake up, shower, get dressed for the day
- 8:00–9:00 reading
- 9:00–12:00 research and writing
- 12:00–1:00 lunch
- Do you get the point, or should I continue?
Scheduling your life by the hour or minute in some cases is very helpful for some. I’ve got way too many variables for my routine to be this scheduled. The only daily reoccurrence I have in my life is 5:00 AM, time to wake up.
I’m a list maker, and without my list of tasks, I find myself running in circles or doing unproductive things. I always keep two lists. One is called, well, To-Do List. Whenever I think of an idea for a post, an adjustment I want to make to my blog, something I want to learn, or whatever (use your imagination), the tasks go to my to-do list.
The second list has a new title every day. Today my list is called Thursday, 1/7/2021. This list is compiled with all of the tasks I must complete today. The time I do these tasks doesn’t matter to me, but I have laid out and understood everything I aim to accomplish on any given day. Today’s list looks as so.
- What does ROI stand for?
- Begin rough draft for new Dream Chapters post
- Why can I not boost posts on the Dream Chapters Facebook page?
- 1hr read
- Incorporate what I’ve been learning, and SEO to the Dream Chapters home page
Scheduling your work or your entire day in any form is crucial in getting the most out of yourself. Find a schedule that best fits your family and work-life and stick to it.
I’ll be honest with you and admit I haven’t always been an avid reader. Three to four books a year if I could find something that resonated with me. As of late, however, I read daily, and the results have been exceptional.
Read to educate yourself. If you love poetry, read books on poetry. Seeing other poets’ plays on words can both inspire and spark ideas. If you aspire to be a freelance writer, pick up books on freelancing. You can never have enough knowledge of your craft, and there is always room to improve.
“A writer who doesn’t read is like a musician who doesn’t listen to music or a filmmaker who doesn’t watch films. It is impossible to do good work without experiencing the good work that has been gone before.”
Makes sense when you look at it like that, huh? Click the link for a more in-depth explanation of the benefits reading has on writers. THE MORE ONE READS, THE BETTER WRITER THEY BECOME
This tip might have come as a surprise to you, but it’s true. The more you write, the better writer you will become. Yeah, seriously… If you want to be a successful writer, there is no world where you could justify not writing every day. And you don’t have to write a book every day to work on your craft.
Try this technique
Make up a story in your head. For example, let’s say I thought of a story about a boy who tragically lost his family. The boy has no one that can take him in and subsequently finds himself in foster care. Once the boy is adopted, he comes to realize that his adopted family is abusive and negligent.
Now that you have this idea, be original in your thinking and write the first paragraph of that story. No matter how busy your day is, you will always have time to write a paragraph. Now the next day, write the last paragraph of the story. One day you could conclude this story with your one paragraph with a happy ending. The following day concludes the same imaginative story with a heartbreaking ending. This will not only improve your writing but do wonders for your creativity.
Whether you’re working on freelancing, writing poetry, a novel, or a simple blog, you must always find time to write something. Don’t give your creativity any time off.
Take care of yourself.
Taking care of yourself allows you something we talked about earlier in this post, momentum. Remember when I said one good day leads to another as one bad day leads to another? How you treat yourself will be the driving factor in how you can carry momentum from one day to another. Try to focus on things such as,
- Go to bed early
- Wake up early
- Go on walks or exercise
- Eat healthy
- Don’t drink excessively
- Instead of watching tv before bed, read a book
I’m a 108% advocate for waking up early. Waking up early allows you the ability to ease into your day at your own pace. Have you ever woken up at 7:25 and had to leave the house for work at 7:30? I’m sure you have, and I’m also sure that day sucked. How your day starts plays a major role in how your day will go.
Before I sat down at my computer this morning at 8:00, I got myself ready for the day, made breakfast for my family, read from a book, did laundry, cleaned the kitchen and living room, and went and picked up my son to get him ready for school. Once I sat down to start working, I had to overcome no wake-up or groggy wall. I sat down to work and took off like a rocket ship.
Accomplishing all of these tasks today also allowed me more consecutive time at my desk. I have stopped writing on two occasions since I originally sat down. Once to make my son lunch and once to go on a walk.
If you decide to use only one of these tips I’ve provided here, wake up early. Be original with your morning routine and find one that works for you. All that’s left is to watch your attitude, writing, and life improve.
Whatever your style of writing. Whether you are writing for yourself, an audience, or for someone else, be original. Original in your content, of course, but be original as in being true to yourself. That’s the magic of writing. Suppose I’m writing about a cold December night or tips to improve your writing. My personality must shine through. You must always hear yourself in your work.
If you are a humorous person, include humor in your posts; if you are sarcastic, pepper some sarcasm in that article! When writing, try this tactic; write as though you are having a one-on-one conversation with someone. Make sure that you aren’t just throwing up facts onto a page. No one wants to read a list of facts; they want you, the writer, to tell them, the reader, a story.
When reading a book or an article on the internet, the reader can’t put a face to the words they read. If you are original and creative enough, you can give those words a voice, this will bring the reader back for more.
Well, that’s all folks
These simple tips will improve your writing. It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned published author or the new guy just trying to figure it all out. Always stick to the basics to maintain a solid foundation of skills to improve day in and day out.
I hope these simple tips find you well and make a difference for you as you continue your writing journey. Take care of yourself, create original content that allows your voice to shine through, and never put your creativity in the back seat.