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Interested in Becoming a Better Writer?
If you’re a writer, you’ve likely wondered what you can do to get better. There are entire books on the subject. However, you don’t need a how to book to improve your writing.
The following five tips for becoming a better writer may seem simple and obvious, but are often overlooked.
Write, Write, and Write Some More
To become better at your craft, you need to practice. Whether you are writing emails, love letters, blog posts, magazine articles, short stories, or a novel, it’s important to write regularly. Pay attention and put some effort into each email. Make each blog post count.
If you are working on a novel, shake things up and write a magazine article. Like an athlete, or anything else in life, practice makes perfect. Or as my son likes to say, “Practice makes better, because there is no perfect.”
Read, Read, and (you guessed it) Read Some More
The best writers read. A ton. However, you don’t have to read Shakespeare, Hemingway, or Austen to become a great writer. Reading what you might consider bad writing is just as important as reading what you might consider great writing. You’ll learn from other writers mistakes and quickly figure out what NOT to do.
It’s also crucial to read a variety of materials. Read books, magazine articles, blog posts, brochures, and short stories. Read chick lit, memoirs, poetry, and children’s books. Each genre will teach you something different. Each author will show you their own personal style of writing.
Write What You Love
Whether you are a copywriter, ghost writer, or journalist, it’s still important to write what you love. When you write what you love, you write with passion.
So if you write magazine articles for a living but really love poetry, write poetry. If you love gardening, write about gardening. Find what you love and find the time to write about it. You’ll quickly see how much more you put into your work. You’ll also see how great your writing really is.
Connect With Others
Unless you work for a company or in an office, you likely write from home. Alone. Writers are often solitary creatures. You may do your best work alone. However, it’s important to connect with others to grow as a writer.
You can connect with writers all over the world via Twitter, Google+, or other social networking platforms. It’s a great way to see what others are doing, discuss all aspects of writing, and maybe even find a mentor or develop a friendship.
Take a Break
If you write for a living and it’s your bread and butter, you might not ever consider taking a break. Again, writers are solitary creatures and often write from home. This might mean writing all day, all night, or all weekend. TAKE A BREAK.
Working on a novel, short story, or article? Step away from it for an hour, day, or even a weekend. Being too close to something for too long is never a good idea. When you come back to your work, with fresh eyes, you’ll find all your mistakes.
If you regularly practice the five tips above, you’ll find that your writing will improve quickly and dramatically.
Do you have any special tricks you use to improve your writing? Share them with us in the comments section below.