|This is a guest post by Alan Wood cross-posted from Online Colleges. Online Colleges brings you the top-notch news, reviews and hot topics in the college world.|
When it comes to writing great content, there is much that can be learned from some of the world’s top bloggers. They manage to attract hordes of readers, know just how to write to keep their attention, and perhaps best of all, are happy to share their advice. Check out these great writing tips from a handful of the world’s best bloggers.
Are you stuck on ideas? Try some of these techniques.
- Share ideas with others: Spend time brainstorming with a friend or writing partner.
- Time yourself: Set a clock and make yourself write for a certain amount of time.
- Keep an ear to the ground: Read the news and other writers to know what’s current.
- Focus on the problem: Go back to an original problem and think of ways to solve it.
- Always have a notebook: Keep a notebook handy at all times so that you can write ideas down any time.
Follow these tips to get writing done.
- Separate research from writing: Do your research before you sit down to write.
- Don’t focus on draft quality: Pick up speed by not worrying about the quality of your first draft.
- Write often: Write consistently and often.
- Set a timer: Write non-stop until your timer goes off.
- Banish distractions: Tune everything out to focus on your writing.
Content & Value
Provide valuable, quality content with these tips.
- Be useful: Provide value by offering writing that is useful.
- Use detail: Make use of rich and vivid detail in your writing.
- Have a reason: Write for a reason and know why you’re writing.
- Stay relevant: Write your title first, then fulfill the promise.
- Give posts as much value as possible: Make your writing as valuable as you can.
- Read what others write: Read other blogs and reading material with high quality writing to soak it all in.
- Avoid worthless writing: Have a purpose for your writing.
- Use repetition: Make use of repetition to pull the reader in.
- Be thorough: Give a resolution and closure every time.
- Use a swipe file: Keep a collection of writing pieces that have worked well and use them for winning formulas.
- Entertain your readers: Amuse your readers, and use humor when appropriate.
- Share authority: Qualify your authority so that it isn’t questioned.
- Avoid hedging: Keep contingencies out of your writing to sound more confident.
- Deny your passive voice: Be more direct by cutting out your passive voice.
- Deliver: Deliver the content you’ve promised in your headline.
- Stay unique: Don’t just say me too, or write what everyone’s already discussing. Come up with something new.
- Write about hot topics: Grab a reader’s attention with the latest big topic.
- Write practically: Keep your tips practical for your readers.
- Use specifics: Make your writing more credible by sharing specific facts and details.
- Be original: Create writing that is original to you.
- Use examples: Illustrate your point with examples.
Pay attention to these tips in order to develop your voice.
- Don’t remove yourself: Be careful not to remove yourself from your writing.
- Tell the truth: Write with an authentic voice.
- Don’t be too clever: Avoid becoming too clever that you lose your voice.
- Get personal: Share personal stories or anecdotes with your readers.
- Distinguish yourself: Find a way to separate yourself from the pack.
- Choose the right tone: Identify your audience’s tone expectation and follow it.
- Give your point of view: Share your own opinions on issues and resources.
- Write informally: Write like you speak so that you’ll sound like a real person.
- Be conversational: Speak to your readers.
- Do one thing well: Know what you want to accomplish with a piece and do it well.
- Make your point: Write concisely to make your point and be done.
These tips will help keep your reader engaged.
- Be bold: Use bold words to attract emphasis.
- Share variety: For regular readers, be sure to mix it up every now and then.
- Make your point: Don’t make your readers wade through it all to find your point.
- Spread things out: Schedule your publishing so that your writing is spread out over time.
- Write a great lead: Use a strong opening paragraph to pull the reader in.
- Remember your audience: Keep your audience in mind when writing.
- Be provoking: Provoke instead of solving when trying to be persuasive.
- Give readers what they want: Know why your readers visit and give them what they want to build trust.
Put these tips to work for titles that will get your writing read.
- Be descriptive: Let your readers know what you’re going to read about.
- Share the main point: Your headline should share a summary of the piece’s main point.
- Provide a sense of urgency: Give your title a sense of urgency.
- Grab attention: Make sure that your titles pull readers in.
- Use questions: Make your headline pose a question.
- Spark curiosity: Leave readers wanting more.
- Take a tip from magazines: Get title writing inspiration by reading magazines.
- Share key words: Consider keywords that will help your writing be found.
- Be specific: Share a couple of details that will catch interest.
- Use active words: Short, active words are preferable to long, passive ones.
- Stay simple: Stay simple to avoid frustrating readers.
- Take your time: Don’t just slap a name on a piece. Carefully think of a title that fits it.
- Title it first: Don’t save your headline for the last task.
- Satisfy a need: Draw readers in by making your titles something they need to hear.
Bloggers are professionals in readability. Use these tips to perfect your skills.
- Make your writing scannable: Many readers don’t go through pieces word for word, so be sure that it’s easy to scan.
- Be understandable: Avoid acronyms and industry-specific language that many readers may not understand.
- Make use of space: Create spaces to help readers avoid feeling overwhelmed.
- Be consistent: Keep your writing consistent to hold interest.
- Demonstrate: When appropriate, use charts, diagrams, and graphs.
- Use lists: Lists make just about anything easier to read.
- Write at an 8th grade level: Avoid complicated words and keep things simple.
- Stay brief: Just write less.
- Think about how you read: Consider what catches your eye and keeps your attention.
- Keep paragraphs short: Break your writing into smaller bits.
- Make use of formatting: Emphasize points with the help of formatting.
- Use short sentences: Create easy to read, short sentences.
- Get to the point: Don’t dance around your point.
- Highlight your points: Be sure to make your main points clear.
With these tips, you can encourage conversation with your writing.
- Keep your readers in mind: Don’t ignore your readers. Know what they are interested in.
- Listen: Listen to your readers so that you’ll know what they want.
- Ask questions: Ask engaging questions in your writing to get responses.
- Respond: Write back to readers when they interact with you.
- Be accessible: Always be willing to interact with your readers.
- Don’t argue: Find a polite and smooth way to correct your readers.
- Voice your opinion: The more polarizing you are, the more feedback you’ll get.
- Stay on topic: Be sure that your readers are finding what they expect in your writing.
- Tell a story: Be more engaging by sharing a story.
- Write regularly: Be consistent in when you publish so that readers know when to expect it.
Get your writing publishing-perfect using these editing techniques.
- Revise in your head: Cut back on your revision time by testing out phrases and words as you write.
- Use a critique partner: Share your work with someone else so that you can catch on to what you’re not doing well.
- Set it aside: Do nothing to your work for a day or two.
- Get rid of unnecessary adjectives: Cut adjectives and adverbs out of your sentences unless they’re absolutely necessary.
- Cut out the non-essential: Be sure to take out everything that isn’t absolutely essential
- Listen to feedback: Make use of the valuable feedback provided by editors.
- Banish unnecessary words: Read your work to identify words that can be cut out.
- Give attribution: Support others by highlighting their ideas when you’d like to share them.
- Fail and learn: You probably won’t do a perfect job right out of the gate. Allow yourself to fail and edit from there.
- Know when to stop: Carefully consider when it’s time to stop editing a post.
- Plan to revise later: Let yourself go with your first draft, then revise.
- Know common mistakes: Recognize mistakes that you’re likely to come across.