5 Simple tips to make writing easy
Writing is a big part of what I do for a living. People often tell me that they could never do my job or that they struggle with writing. While it is true that everyone has their own “thing,” and that writing is fairly easy for me, there are some simple business writing tips you can use to improve your writing if it does not come easily to you.
Writing tip 1. Just start writing.
Most people try to write the title for their article first. Then they get stuck and can’t move on. Or, they write a title that limits the subject of the article. Next time, try skipping the title and write the article first. It will be easier to title your article when you know what your article is actually about.
Writing tip 2. Write it when you think it.
I carry a small notebook in my purse and in my car, so I can record thoughts at stoplights. (Don’t worry, I know better than to write when I’m driving!) You never know when inspiration will strike and if you don’t write your thoughts down, they will be lost. Alternately, you could use the voice recorder in your phone to grab your thoughts for later.
Writing tip 3. Don’t be afraid to skip around.
If you get stuck on one thought and can’t seem to finish a sentence, just move on. Conversely, if you’re thinking so fast new thoughts that aren’t related to what you’re writing pop into your head, just move further down the page and record those thoughts. Trust me - if you think you’ll remember the point you wanted to make two sentences ago, you’re kidding yourself. Write it down quickly. Don’t bother with full sentences. You simply need a trigger to remind you of what you wanted to say. You can go back later and connect your two thoughts or delete one and expand upon the other.
Writing tip 4. Write backwards.
Most of us were taught to write by introducing the setting, explaining the situation, and building to a conclusion. However, effective business writing begins at the end. I call this writing backwards, because the conclusion is at the beginning and everything you write afterwards supports that idea. That’s how newspapers are written. The headline tells you what happened and the story explains the circumstances that led up to the final event. If you’re not in the habit of writing this way, just write the way you normally do and then go back and edit your work. Your main idea is probably the first sentence of the second paragraph.
Writing tip 5. Take a break.
When you feel like you’re done, pause and walk away. An hour or more away from your writing will give you fresh eyes and make you a better editor.
If you want to achieve search engine optimization (SEO) success, want your prospective customers to understand what you do, or need to market your business, strong business writing stills are crucial. If you just can’t master the art of writing, outsource it! There are lots of great freelance writers out there who can ghost write for you while you work on things you are good at. If the rules of writing are a challenge, be sure to check out the AP Style Guide. Even in the age of Googling everything, this reference is the bible of how to write correctly!