Do you ever find it difficult to transfer the great ideas in your head onto paper?
Or in most cases, a Word Document?
We are taught from a young age the do's and don'ts of writing.
While grammar is extremely important (please don't say omg or ttyl in your writing), a specific tone, format, and style are not what make a great writer.
A great writer is someone who can convey their knowledge, story, or information in a creative, influential, well thought out, and engaging way.
Here are some characteristics of effective writing to keep in mind next time you go to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard).
1. Be Original.
Don't stray away from who you are when going to write your content.
Whether you are blogging for personal use or for your company, don't try and adapt to someone else's tone other than your own when writing.
When writing, think about what you are trying to convey.
Now, how would you say it when talking to someone?
Now take that, and just fix the grammar.
Your voice is your voice for a reason.
We do not need two thousand Edgar Allen Poes.
Your opinion, viewpoint, and way of presenting content are not only needed but valued.
2. Be Willing To Learn.
Just as it is important to stay true to yourself when writing, it is also important to have a growth mentality.
Don't be afraid to challenge yourself.
Everyone should aim to grow.
This does not exclude your writing.
Studying better ways of writing, conveying thoughts, and how to increase your tone in a positive way is not denying your original voice.
It is enhancing it.
As well, challenge yourself in your topic choices.
Don't be afraid to research and do some learning and then write about it.
Your fresh perspective might actually be what someone is looking for.
3. Practice Often.
The best way to excel or grow in any area is to be consistent in your practices.
Don't just write a great piece and then wait until you feel you can write something just as well.
Write something great.
Then write something shorter, and maybe less great.
Either way, just write.
Constantly be writing about different topics of interest.
The more you write, the more you will get a feel for who you are as a writer, what your tone is, and your style preferences.
4. Don't Stop (Believinggg!).
Don't give up.
If a piece you have written gets nine negative reviews out of ten, don't be discouraged.
There are two sides to this kind of scenario.
Either you can take those reviews and learn how to better write that piece of content.
Or, if you are proud and sure of your piece, then take it from the viewpoint that there is one like-minded person out there, and nine people who stumbled upon your writing who just have a different opinion.
Either way, don't stop writing.
Everyone hits that annoying bump in the road sometimes.
Don't let negative reviews or lack of readers deter you.
Take everything as a learning opportunity, and keep aiming towards your goal.