Writing is one of the great joys of life, but it can also be difficult, tedious, and full of frustration. Luckily, there are some specific things you can do to become a better writer. Read on for 15 habits that will make you a better writer, today.
1. Start Before You Are Ready
If you wait until you feel 100%, you may never start. Always start writing before you are absolutely ready. You’ll find that you know more than enough to start.
2. Write As You Speak
It’s tempting to want to sound more professional or intellectual in your writing, but simplicity wins every time. Avoid complicated sentence structures and too many adjectives. Instead simply write as you speak. You can always edit your writing for clarity later.
3. Write Full Copy
Writing an outline or rough dot points can only take you so far. Write a full copy, long-hand draft that is complete and ready for a final edit, straight off the mark.
4. Avoid Perfectionism
Your writing will never be perfect, so striving for perfection is a fruitless task. Accept that your writing is good enough and keep going. You will improve over time and become a better writer but no one is ever perfect.
5. Write to Your Ideal Reader
Imagine your ideal reader and write to him or her. Your ideal reader might be based off a real person, or be someone completely imaginary. The important thing is that you have a clear image in your mind of exactly who this person is. By keeping your ideal reader in mind, you will be writing directly to your audience.
6. Eliminate Redundant Words
Avoid overwriting by using fewer words to express the same sentiment. Doing this will tighten up your writing to achieve better flow and more impact.
7. Write Every Single Day
Writing every single day will help you avoid writers block by maintaining a flow to your writing practice. It will also ensure that you’re constantly improving and becoming a better writer. After all, practice makes perfect.
8. Create a First Draft
Without editing, write your first draft freely. Doing this will help you maintain your flow. Creating and editing are two separate mental processes so it’s essential to keep them as separate tasks in your writing schedule also.
9. Don’t Wait for the Perfect Moment
The perfect moment to write may never come, so don’t sit around waiting for it. The best moment to start writing is right now.
10. Read Your Writing Out Aloud
It’s tempting to edit your writing by reading silently, but saying the words aloud is essential. It will help you eliminate the awkward sentences and errors you didn’t catch first time around.
11. Read the Work of Great Writers
Reading is an essential step in learning to be a better writer. Read the work of great writers you admire to get inspired and learn how they structure their writing.
12. Start a Writing Routine and Stick to It
Every great writer has a good routine. Find what works best for you and stick to it. Pick a time of day and a place, and write like your life depends on it.
13. Live Your Life
Great writers live interesting lives. An interesting life will give you great inspiration and material for your own writing, so get out there and do great things to become a better writer.
14. Don’t Wait for the Perfect Conditions
You don’t need a special desk, the perfect view, or a sunny day to write. All you need is a pen and paper. Stop making excuses and write no matter what.
15. Join a Writers Group
Join a writers group to meet like minded people who share your interest and ambition for writing. A writers group will provide you with the much needed support, guidance, and motivation you need to become a great writer.
Writing is one of the most difficult, most underrated activities that people all across the world covet. How to Develop a Daily Writing HabitFeatured photo credit: Carlos.I.Becerra via Flickr CC