Writing Tips

How to write with confidence: your writing tips

You’ve been doing me proud this month sharing ideas, suggestions and writing tips in the comment box. For the benefit of those who are reading in a feed here are the best suggestions for writing with confidence that were shared here this month:

Tip 1: Ask questions to get clear on the container for your words

“For whom am I writing this?” The answer to that question give you the shape of the container, and possibly even the refreshment that goes in it.
The next question, “Why am I writing this?” will give you the size of the container. Finally, “What will I say?” tells you how much to put in the container.

Suggested by Robert Hruzek (Middle Zone Musings)

Tip 2: Stop and think before you start

Recommended by Troy Worman (Orbit Now)

Tip 3: Let your writing settle

I try to let something sit overnight before printing anything (or posting) because invariably I can reduce the amount of words. I think not only will this save paper but also save our poor little information overloaded brains! :-)

Contributed by Aruni (Entrepremusings)

Tip 4: Be your own sounding board

I think it’s fair to say that you can be your own sounding board, too, if no one else is around. By reading the piece out load you can see where it jars, where the rhythm doesn’t flow and where it doesn’t make sense.

Suggested by Emma Bird (HowToItaly)

Tip 5: Use bullet points for clear thinking

Bullet points are enormously effective for explaining product/service benefits to a customer. But to make bullet points work, you have to clearly think out and distinguish each particular benefit, and then express each one in the fewest possible words. It can be a laborious process, but the end result is a summary that sticks in the customer’s mind and yours!

Contributed by Brad Shorr (Word Sell Inc)

Tip 6: Write something digestible

In this day of quick-attention spans and skimming/scanning readership - as writers we must make our words easy to digest and remember.

Offered by Mike Sansone (Converstations)

Tip 7: Change your point of view

Don’t be afraid to travel down new roads! Explore a new topic or write from a different point of view. This can provide a refreshing change to both you and your readers.

Suggested by Maura (MomComingHome)

Tip 8: Don’t let perfectionism get in your writing road

Don’t wait until your engine purrs before starting off: There is no perfect purr - perfect time, perfect moment, perfect setting - for setting off down the writing highway.

Contributed by Cat (Business of Design Online)

Robert Hruzek reminded me of a great bit of blogging advice yesterday - you don’t have to try to be the expert on your own.

By leaving things unsaid, you’re actually inspiring more conversation “out there”

I never cease to be amazed at the way my words can make a connection with your words - leading to new ideas, tips, suggestions and learning points here - and who knows what renewed motivation, increased confidence and new avenues for your writing “out there”.

Thanks to everyone who’s contributed to Confident Writing this month, including our two guest authors Brad Shorr and Chris Garrett, the tipsters I’ve mentioned here plus all those who joined in the conversation:

Terinea Weblog, Rosa Say, Jeanne Dininni, Deb, Rosa, Laura, Yvonne Russell, Liz Strauss, Karen Wallace, Sylvia C, Pelf, Ann Michael, Vernon Lunn, Robyn McMaster, Lillie Ammann, Tim, Carol, Rebecca Thomas

For more writing tips why not subscribe to the Confident Writing feed? The conversation that’s coming up will be focused on writing to make a powerful connection.

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6 Responses to “How to write with confidence: your writing tips”

  1. On November 1, 2007 at 11:51 am Robert Hruzek responded with... #

    (Oops! Made a comment the other day but accidentally never passed through the captcha!)

    Wow! Two mentions in the same post! I’m honored, Joanna, to have been a part of the growth of Confident Writing. But just remember this - a good teacher always learns more than the student!

    I’ve learned much while visiting here, and I want to thank you for being a friend of the Middle Zone!

    Cheers! :-)

  2. On November 1, 2007 at 1:59 pm Joanna Young
    Twitter: joannapaterson
    responded with... #

    Thanks Robert - and for persisting with your comment despite the catchpa!

    It’s one of the things I love most about blogging - we are all both teaching and learning from each other, all the time.

    I hope you’ll enjoy the coming month at confident writing too - as you’re the guru on conversations-as-bridges… I think it’ll be right up your street :-)


  3. On November 1, 2007 at 3:23 pm Maura responded with... #

    Thank you for the link Joanna. I am happy I found your blog…many valuable lessons here, you are doing a great job!


  4. On November 1, 2007 at 4:00 pm YC responded with... #

    Excellent tips there, Joanna! Especially #8 and Robert’s advice - sometimes doing those helps a lot more than writing loads!

  5. On November 1, 2007 at 6:35 pm Joanna Young
    Twitter: joannapaterson
    responded with... #

    Hi Maura

    I’m happy you found my blog too!

    Thanks again for sharing your tip - and for the stumble :-)


  6. On November 1, 2007 at 6:37 pm Joanna Young
    Twitter: joannapaterson
    responded with... #

    Hi YC

    Thanks for stopping by. I’m glad you enjoyed these writing tips.

    I think Robert’s advice is very valuable too. It’s possibly the most challenging for us writers (and perfectionists…) - leaving something unsaid - but the best strategy for opening up blog conversations…



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