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Everyone can write, but not everyone can write.

April 8, 2010

Most people are horrible writers.

There, I said it.  It might sound mean, but it is true.  And nearly everyone has thought it.

While writing can be done by anyone, quality writing is a skill which must be learned.  This does not mean that everyone learns how to write the same way, but the skill must be learned and developed in some way.

So take intentional steps in developing your writing.  Here are a few ways:

1) Have a thesis. Everyone has an agenda with their writing.  Make sure this agenda is expressed clearly.  If you do not know what you are trying to prove, then your writing is not fit for print.

2) Proofread your work.  Check your writing for typos.  Check your writing for unnecessary words.  Check your writing for clarity.  If you find that any word does not promote clarity, delete it.  If the word is opaque, clarify it.  The word count in most writing could be cut in half without losing any vital content or your distinct voice.

3) Stand on Shoulders.  Read the works of a broad spectrum of good writers.  Read widely and learn from the style of the greats.

4) Read on writing. If you write (or preach) regularly, it is in your best interest to read lots of books on writing well.  In addition to reading articles on writing, try to read at least one book a year which deals solely with some issue of writing.  Some books will help with nuts and bolts (for example, The Elements of Style).  Other books will help your general style (for example, On Writing Well).

Any other suggestions from our readers?

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 3, 2010 4:01 pm

    Better Title: Everyone can wrong, not everyone can write.

    Just a writer’s suggestion.

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