Have you written to someone and still had to explain what your writing was about verbally? In such a case, it could only mean that what you wrote was difficult to understand, and the reader failed to get the point. Hence, it becomes essential for you to improve your writing skills to avoid repeating such a scenario.
You don’t need to be a professional writer before you decide to improve your writing skills.
Our writing skills are put to the test frequently through email, text messages, monthly reports, etc.
Becoming a great writer is not difficult, although it takes time and constant practice to become versed in this matter.
Importance of Writing Skills
Helps in Communicating without Physical Meetings
With solid writing skills, you can communicate without having to attend or hold physical meetings.
One of the importance of writing skills is that you can pass information without leaving your house for a meeting.
It is essential that the information we are passing across through text, email, or any other means is clear and understood by the receiver.
It Is Used For Reference Purpose
Writing for reference is very important.
There is sometimes a need to write down some comprehensive things for others to read and understand if you are not around to explain them verbally.
Information on the structure of an organization, duties of each staff, etc., are often required to be written for reference purposes.
Examples of Writing Skills
We will be listings out skills that can be useful to improve on to get better in writing.
Clarity and Grammar
English grammar has a lot of rules, and as a writer, you must know these rules.
When writing, you need to know how to make sentences that are not difficult to read.
Hence, you should ensure that what you write is easy to understand and clear to the reader.
Communication skills are needed in every walk of life.
You often need to compose messages, emails, meeting agendas, feedback as a normal life function.
Therefore, you need to possess communication skills to be able to do these.
Effective communication makes it easy to have a smooth working experience.
What you need and want from people will be more accessible because they understand what you ask of them.
In fact, you cannot be a good writer without the ability to communicate.
Revising and Editing
Revising and editing help you make corrections to grammar and wrong spellings, etc.
Editing skills are an essential part of writing because they make your write-up stand out when your writing is properly proofread and edited.
If you are good at editing, you can quickly point out mistakes in anything you read.
You can also fix it.
Time management is essential in every area of life, even more so when writing.
When writing, you need to break down your content into sections and identify how long it will take to write each section.
You need to see that you have sufficient time to gather your thoughts, do your research and present your information coherently.
If you can plan this ahead, you are more likely to finish writing your content in enough time for any deadlines that you may have.
Your content is more likely to be on point and on time.
How to Improve Writing Skills
Most times, when you want to play with words, you can do it anyhow you like, but if it is for public consumption, it has to be structured.
Your thought needs to have the proper structure for others to get your point and also understand what is written.
Therefore, here are useful tips on how to structure and improve your writing skills.
Write on Concepts You Clearly Understand
Before writing on any topic, take time to think about what you are about to write.
Ensure that you understand clearly the thought or concept you are about to write on and stick to it.
Know your goals for writing and endeavor to achieve them; you should also know what the result will be.
The purpose of your writing should be clear before you start writing.
Have an Outline
It is usually not difficult to write text messages.
But when writing a more complex message, you need to have an outline.
It can be complex in the sense that it has questions, multiple angles, requests, and more.
All these should be outlined.
When you have done that, then you can start writing.
An outline will make your writing faster and easier.
Reading and studying is one way to get to improve your writing skills.
One way to improve your writing skill is to put yourself in the shoes of your reader.
When you read extensively, you will know how to go about your writing.
You have to find out if you need to write long or short sentences.
You will know if your writing takes a formal or informal form?
Most importantly, you should know your type of writing before you proceed.
Expect Questions from Your Reader
Your readers may want to have a conversation about your write-up.
They may have clarifying questions.
Perhaps there are things they simply do not understand.
When writing have this in mind.
Anticipate your reader’s questions and answer them in your writing.
Preposition and Phrases Should Be Simple
Using simple prepositions for your writing gives it more clarity, and makes it easy to read.
Your Write-up Should Not Be Over Explained
Your writing should be kept simple.
In addition, your thoughts should be properly organized when writing.
The point is that your reader should be given the necessary message to read and understand without getting them tired with too many details.
When you notice that you have over-explained, check your write-up to remove any information not needed for the reader’s understanding.
Have the Right Format for Any Situation
You should get the right or appropriate format that you need for your write-up.
Find out the best approach on how to write.
How lengthy or short should the write-up be?
How detailed should this write-up be?
If you know the appropriate format to use, then you can give your audience or reader the necessary details that are expected.
Be Conscious of Your Audience
You can communicate effectively if you know and understand what your audience needs.
With this understanding, you will know the right language to use, and the kind of write-up they will read and understand.
Knowing your audience will also make you know the tone needed in your article or write-up.
How exposed is my audience?
How knowledgeable are they?
To what length can they sit and read?
When you know these facts, your writing will be easy.
Before you complete your work, ensure you have read through to be sure that what you have written is what will be perceived by your readers.
Make Use of Contractions
Contractions such as “I’m”, “they’re”, “didn’t”, “we’re”, “can’t”, “you’re”, etc. are words that will make your writing less formal and not stiff.
Instead of “There are times I wish you are closer to us,”.
make it less by saying “There are times I wish you’re closer to us”.
Make use of these words and see how interesting your write-up becomes.
Don’t Use Filler Words
Some words add nothing to our writings, yet they are found in writing.
Words like ‘really’, ‘that’, ‘ I think,’ ‘just’, ‘It seems’, etc. are sometimes unnecessary.
On occasion, ‘I feel’ ‘I think’ or ‘it seems’ are words that will not give your writing confidence and can weaken your point.
Use Simple Words
It is better to use simple words in writing than using complex and difficult words to understand.
Simple words will increase your reader’s interest.
Showing off with complex words may hinder your reader from reading and understanding what your write-up is about.
Rich vocabulary can be used but it shouldn’t be complex and difficult for your reader’s digest.
Stick to simple words for your writing.
Use Writing Mechanics – How To Improve Writing Skills
There are essential tips that will make your writing easy to read for a better understanding.
Using the same words over and over again when writing is not the best experience for the reader.
Your writing appears bland and less engaging.
Use a variety of words, explore synonyms. Variety makes for more engaging content.
Your Reader Should Be Lead Through Each Point
When moving from one point to another, you should have a smooth transition.
Lack of a proper or smooth transition will make your reader confused.
Ensure that every point you write about is clear for your audience to understand, and it should be linked to the main topic.
Sentences should differ
When writing, if you use the same length and structure everywhere, it will be boring to read.
For instance, starting every sentence with ‘I’, ‘When’, ‘You’ etc.
This is also a form of repetition and it is easy for readers to lose interest in your write-up.
Transcribe Your Work.
Have a record of you talking.
With this record, transcribe what is recorded.
If it is not your record, be sure to take permission from the owner of the recorded conversation before transcribing.
Take the words one after the other, and then filler words should be removed.
This is a great way to learn about conversational writing.
Use Simple Sentences – How To Improve Writing Skills
Complex and long sentences are usually confusing.
Simple sentences get your reader more interested to read to the end of the message.
Even when your sentences are simple, you should also vary the sentences to have a fine flow.
Your Writing Should Have Feel Of Your Personality
Allowing your personality to show in your work is a way to improve your style of writing.
Some of your phrases and slang can be used but they should be used reasonably.
Although it all depends on your kind of write-up; however, you should put in some of your styles when it is necessary.
All in all, be yourself whether your write-up is a professional or formal one.
Reading aloud will help you to know if your writing possesses the right flow.
It will also help you to pick out wrong spelling and grammar errors.
There is writing that is okay on screen, but when you proofread, you will find out there are mistakes that need corrections.
When reading, find out if your words are complex, also check if your sentences are simple too.
If your sentences are too long or complex, then you can make corrections.
Ensure you read out loud each time you write.
Practice – How To Improve Writing Skills
It is important to find out what makes your writing weak, work on it.
Constant writing, editing, and proofreading are ways to practice and get better at your writing skills.
Getting feedback from readers is a good way to know if you are doing great in your writing skills.
But you have to be sure that their opinion or feedback is not biased.
This feedback will make you know if there are mistakes, long sentences, typing errors, wrong grammar, etc.
You may think that your writing is straight to the point and clear, but the feedback you get might state otherwise.
Pay close attention to all feedback, both commendation, and critiques, focus on the critiques more, and see how to fix it.
Sometimes, it is alright to get feedback from trusted people who will be truthful, and not biased with their opinions.
Join a Writing Group
Belonging to a writing group can improve your writing skills.
This group or community will help you improve in so many ways.
The writing community or groups have experienced facilitators and instructors that are readily available to give the necessary instructions.
Use Tools to Aid your Writing – How To Improve Writing Skills
There are lots of applications and programs that can be used to make writing easy.
Tools like Grammarly, Sapling, WritingProAid, Grammar and spelling Checkers, etc.
These tools make it easy to write and make so many corrections.
Also, they make your work faster.
Conclusion on How to Improve Writing Skills
Writing skills come in handy (pun intended) in so many ways.
Your skills can be helpful in so many ways to create an impression and voice out your thoughts.
Everyone needs to work on getting better at writing because it can be required anytime and anywhere.
Hence, we advise that you practice the above tips to improve your writing skills.