I remember the first “book” I ever wrote. It was about three pages long, size 16 font and double-spaced, and was about a little girl who moved away from her best friends, only to find that they each sent her a letter a week after she moved! It was truly heartwarming. Friendship conquers all, and all that jazz.
I almost have my Bachelor’s degree in English, so I’m practically a writing expert (insert audience laugh track here).
Really, though, I do know at least a little bit about writing, so I can offer a tad of advice to budding and struggling writers.
If you think you stink at writing and that no one would ever want to read something you wrote, you’re certainly not alone. Even the most skilled authors fear rejection and dislike.
First, here’s a general tip: don’t write like you talk. Writing is a different form of communication than speech, so that’s why writing often doesn’t translate well from your thoughts. A sentence that is longer than two full lines might sound fine when you’re talking, but it’s hard for people to read without a break for that long.
Vary sentence length and type. Write a really long sentence, then a short sentence, then a medium sentence. If you write the same type of sentence over and over again, your readers’ eyes will glaze over from the lack of variety.
Proofread. Please. That’s all I’m going to say.
Tone is often misunderstood in writing, especially in emails. There are no facial expressions or hand gestures (although even that is arguable thanks to emojis), so it’s easy to think that someone is being harsher than they mean to be.
Don’t over-use exclamation points trying to combat dullness, but rather add in some humor or clarification to avoid any misinterpretation. Even somewhat boring content can be made interesting with the right tone.
Consider your audience. If you’re writing to someone who is your parent’s age, you’re certainly not going to write the same content as you would if you’re writing to a ten-year-old. Find a balance that reaches every reader.
I promise that your writing will only get better with time. It does take a lot of practice, but anyone can write a blog post or an email that captivates and informs an audience.
To learn more about writing specifically for a blog, check out our free ebook, “Why Pastors Should Blog.” Download the ebook, which details how to start and maintain a blog, by clicking the button below!