Writing Skills

Effective writing comprises the five major components: Process, Structure, Content, Grammar, and Style. All of them are equally important in delivering great written content. Take one of the components away and your writing will become unbalanced.

From planning to proofing, understanding the process will help you become a much better writer.

Explore the ideas presented below and start practicing every day to change the way you write. This will help affect many more lives in a positive way.


Write about what you love

Writing about something that excites you, helps achieve great goals, and allows for touching more lives. Avoid writing on topics that do not interest you. You will not have enough motivation and you will not persist long enough to succeed. Understand what your passions are and go for it. You will never be short of ideas on inspiration on what to write about.

Keep your audience in mind

Expressing thoughts and ideas requires thinking about the audience. Ask yourself "Who am I writing for?" before you get started. Keeping your readers in mind magnifies the effectiveness of the subsequent steps in the process.

Plan before writing

Starting without a solid plan is like building a house without a foundation. What are going to talk about? What are your goals? What do you want you readers to take from your message? Consider the following process before you start writing the very first sentence:

  • Set clear goals
  • Brainstorm ideas
  • Write down main thoughts
  • Outline structure

Be consistent

Consistent writing helps your readers get the most out of your content. They know what to expect and in which format. Inconsistent writing creates chaos and leaves the reader scratching their head and trying to put it all together. Being consistent makes your audience want to read more of your work.

Understand first draft is not ideal

Don't beat yourself for delivering a non-ideal first draft. It's expected to be like that. Be patient. The baseline version helps you come up with better ideas on how to structure and polish your content. If you consider this as a starting point eventually your will win big. Scrap, reorganize, and tune. It takes time but this is the only way to deliver a highly engaging and easy to follow piece of writing.

Give it your best

Each time you write on something do your absolutely best so your readers want more. Include as much useful information as possible. Be creative, use images, diagrams, videos, calculators, and online interaction tools where appropriate.


Writing without a robust structure is the same as building a house without a solid foundation. Frame the content properly before going any further with the elements of style.

Intro section

The introduction section invites the reader to spend their valuable time on reading what you have to say. Ensure it is concise and interesting. Entice the reader. After reading the intro section your audience should feel like they can't wait to finish the rest of it.

Core content sections

Include your main ideas in a sequence of logically organized coherent sections.

Stick to captivating content

Each paragraph and each sentence you write should motivate the audience to read further. When used consistently this principle will boost your audience retention rates. Do not get distracted, examine each sentence and ask yourself if it makes the reader want more of your content.

Use paragraphs

Divide your message into multiple logically connected paragraphs with an easy to follow flow. Using large chunks of text scares readers as it's difficult to comprehend ideas without having enough breathing space.

Summary section

Summary section solidifies reader's knowledge by highlighting the main ideas and summarizing everything that has been communicated before. Ensure the section is as concise and as interesting as possible. Many readers do not read the whole article. Some of them do not even skim through. They jump to the bottom straight away and look for a great summary or recommendation. The only way to capture such readers is to always have great and useful summary sections. Think about this section as the only piece of content you readers have time for. What information would you put in there?


Be specific

Being specific helps readers to understand your ideas much better. Imagine a CEO talking about the company's goals using blurry generic phrases like

"Our mission is to ensure our clients and stakeholders are satisfied with our services."
What can the audience gather from this statement? It's too generic and boring. Compare it to this one:
"Each customer must receive their order within 45 minutes to meet our daily goals written on the wall next to your desk."

Which one makes more sense? Which one gives you specific information that you can use from the very first time you hear it?

Strive for simplicity

Effective writing expresses ideas clearly without redundant information. Eliminate unnecessary words and phrases leaving only the required thoughts and constructs. Destroy long paragraphs and sentences by re-structuring and splitting into smaller pieces. Review your work often and ruthlessly destroy the noise which does not add any value and only distracts the reader.

Choose appropriate words

A great piece of writing contains the most appropriate words amplifying the main idea and making it enjoyable to read.

Replace weak words with strong

Weak words are weeds. They pollute your writing. A few examples: very, really, actually, so

Consider replacing this sentence

It is very hard to replace bad habits with good ones
It is difficult to replace bad habits with good ones

Avoid using 'there is' and 'there are'

Using these constructs make your sentences longer. It's easy to replace them with more appropriate constructs as illustrated belowUsing these constructs make your sentences longer. It's easy to replace them with more appropriate

There are many ways people can waste a lot of time without even realizing
People waste a lot of time without even realizing

Avoid using cliches

People don't like cliches. Don't use them. Replace commonly used phrases with more specific and spiced up constructs.

Replace I with You

Putting emphasis on yourself makes it boring for your readers. Count how many times you have used I, me, we, and us. Re-write your content to use you instead. Great content engages the reader and puts them on the front stage.

Ask questions

Asking questions is a thought provoking process that engages your audience. Have you noticed this article has a few questions to give you a chance to stop, think, and take a breath? Do you feel engaged when encountering a question related to the area you are interested in?

Use images

A picture is worth a thousand words. Our brains consume images much more efficiently than words, sentences, and paragraphs. Become creative and enhance your content with multiple illustrations.

Add videos

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth a thousand pictures. According to multiple reports the proportion of videos to other types of online content is changing fast. Video content is king. If you deliver online material consider using videos to spice your content up and make it more meaningful.


Eliminate passive voice

More often than not, passive voice removes the energy from your sentences by shifting the emphasis from the important subject. Consider the following example.

"A lot of time was wasted by John on social media websites"
"John wasted precious time on social media websites"

Clearly, the second sentence is much more concise and vibrant putting the emphasis on the subject (John) as opposed to the process.

While using passive voice is considered a bad practice, often it is required and sounds much better. Use this principle but remember that nearly every rule has exceptions.


Choose your style based on your personality and audience. Don't try to be someone you are not. You must feel confident and natural when writing. Take into account your audience. Your style might be affected by the people you write for. Explore established and recognized writers. See who you can relate to. Lear from them, think about your audience, and be yourself.


Improving your writing skills is an essential part of effective communication. It involves mastering a few strategies including proper process, clear structure, appropriate content, correct grammar, and your unique style. Each piece of this writing puzzle is critical in influential writing. Practice every day in a structured way to boost your writing skills. Become a great writer capable of touching many more lives with useful and engaging content.

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