I find writing comes easy to me, not because Shakespeare was a distant relative or I had a marvellous public school education, but because I taught.
If you had 5 one hour slots a day, five days a week, with a demanding teenage audience motivating them with a love of English and Literature, you’d grow to know how to write.
I started writing from the age of four, but rather than the usual potted history, without the This is Your Life book, here’s some brief pointers for becoming a better writer, or even starting writing:
- TITLE. Get the title right before you hit publish. 7 or 8 words, with a mix of power, common, uncommon and emotional that will get people clicking. I threw AWESOME in as a power word, to make sure you did just that. If you’ve read this far, it worked.
- OPENING and ENDING: think Freytag and his bloody Triangle (Google it, if unsure). Make the opening relate to the ending, make the ending relate to the opening. The opening paragraph needs as much attention as the title: because it makes people decide whether to read on and it sits above the fold. The screen that is on smartphones.
- TELL STORIES and DON’T BORE OTHERS. I’ve been there many a time years ago where you go to some work social or a family gathering and you dread catching the eye of some boring colleague or relative, or worse still sitting next to said bore. No one, I repeat, no one likes a bore and no one likes boring content. Tell stories, have fun, be relatable.
- DON’T OVERLY SELL. If you’ve got a sales message in your writing, that’s fine but don’t make it obvious. Sell by giving good content, by informing, providing answers and entertaining.
- IMAGES: include them.
300 words done.