Your writing is a natural extension of yourself. Your inner workings, thoughts, reality...You are creating your world and allowing others in when you sit down to write each new page or blog post.
Practice is one aspect to becoming a great writer, yet it doesn't matter how much you are writing - rather that you are being mindful and creating quality works in the process.
Every time you stare at the screen and start typing, you are adding to the collective consciousness of those you know, along with people you will never even meet. Isn't that exciting?!
Whether you desire to inspire others to achieve more in life, educate them on a specific topic or inform them about your amazing new hobby or skill the world's never heard of before - the important thing is to keep people engaged.
You can only engage people by meeting them where they are at. If you're not sure what this looks like, then implementing the recommendations below can help you to step up your game...
1. Read Daily
It makes sense...if you want to get good at your craft, then you need to be reading books, blog posts, magazine articles...whatever it is that you want to get involved with writing.
Making reading a daily habit can create new neural pathways and connections in the brain. This means it's easier to start feeling the spark of inspiration that gets you excited about creating your own stories and articles.
If you struggle to squeeze in significant reading time, try reading for just 5-10 minutes daily and make it a regular habit. Focus on the genres you want to write in - observe your favourite authors or bloggers and research if their tone or style of writing is something that could possibly work for you.
2. Go For A Walk
Walking is a simple, free activity that anyone of any age can enjoy. Not only is it an excellent way to stay fit and healthy, many writers have also found it can stimulate the creation of new ideas.
Research from one 2010 study found that walking for forty minutes just three times a week enhanced the connectivity of important brain circuits, reduced the decline in brain function associated with aging and increased cognitive task performance.
Brain power has also been shown to increase while walking, suggesting it's a great activity to boost your thinking and problem solving abilities.
3. Feel The Energy
Are you excited about what you want to write? How does it make you feel? If you're clearly ecstastic about the words you are writing/typing onto the page - then ask yourself, 'How can I contain this feeling so that others can experience it too?'
Once you acknowledge that you are clearly growing something with great intentions and you are feeling good about it - that's when you want to start committing it to the blank page for others to feel too.
Gaining clarity on your thoughts and mental processes is essential. As a writer, you also need to be mindful and protective of your energy - meditation can help you to do both.
It's ironic in that if you are looking to get more done, you should slow down and do less. Yet meditation can teach your mind to focus in these areas and with greater strength.
By sitting in silence, even for just 5 or 10 minutes daily, you can focus on naturally clearing what does not serve you.
Meditation can get your creative juices flowing and this helps you a great deal as a writer who is looking to freely create from a place of purpose and passion.
5. Set A Writing Deadline
Nothing gets done if there isn't a time set for it to be achieved in. Otherwise, you may just write here or there - but there is no real motive or sense of achievement in doing so.
Any writer knows that deadlines are a natural part of the writing process. Deadlines are the yang (active part) that provides structure to your yin (creative) energies.
When you can make the writing process itself as exciting and rewarding to you as coming up with new ideas - then you will follow through with your word and actually be a successful writer.
Learn to set solid deadlines and do not compromise on them! And watch how your writing transforms the world.
6. Write Everything At Once, Then Review & Review
It's tempting to write and then critique every single word, yet this actually takes you out of creative flow. Instead, focus on creating and writing everything that is coming to you. Leave the page. Go for a walk. Or do anything else. Then come back and review what you have written.
Feel into each word. As you go through this editing process, you may have all kinds of new insights coming to you. This is a natural part of editing and can encourage you to think critically about how words or sentences are fitting together.
A second and then third read through can show all of the words and concepts that may need removing, or replacing with something else.
7. Get A Second Pair Of Eyes
Everyone has a different perspective on the world. When you're reading your writing back, it might sound perfect...but give it to another person and they might have many misunderstandings or interpretations.
Getting someone else to read, review and give you honest feedback on your writing is absolutely essential.
You may think that what you have written makes perfect sense. Yes, it does - to you. Get someone else to check and ensure that it really does convey what you want it to mean!
8. Fail, Fail And Then Fail Again
If you want to be a successful writer, learning to enjoy the process of failure is the only way.
Going from failure to failure is how you achieve success. You do this by seeing the benefit in every experience - good or bad.
Learning to enjoy failure is key as you can then understand more deeply what the experience is trying to teach you. And therefore you can take these lessons and use them to fuel you on towards success.
This is imperative when you start submitting your blogs or books to other writers or agents. Success is what you get when you learn to enjoy the stepping stones of failure along the way.
9. Check Your Grammar
Your grammar is important and can completely change the meaning of a sentence.
Take for example the improper use of punctuation in the form of missing commas, misplaced apostrophes and using the wrong words. All of this can cloud the true meaning of your writing and confuse your readers.
If you're unsure if your grammar is correct, consider adding Grammarly, a free writing app to your website. This will make sure that everything you write is clear, effective and mistake-free.
10. Make It Personal
To truly connect with and engage your readers, you need to add the personal touch. This means writing from the first person, using 'I' and 'you' to create a conversation with your readership.
Focus on providing value to your readers. What do they most want to hear? What are they most looking for...and then ask yourself, how can you provide it to them?
Your writing should be like speaking to a friend. Clear, engaging and concise. This allows you to build a good relationship with your readership.
11. Use Real Life Experiences
You are undergoing a unique experience in your individual life story. Every single individual has different perspectives, experiences and perceptions. All of this creates the person's own unique life story.
Your real life experiences are completely valid. Each experience either good or bad, can be used as inspiration for future blog posts, articles, books or personal memoirs.
Take what you learn from each experience and allow it to creatively inspire you in your writing ideas. Use your personal pain to empower your transformation and support others through their own struggles.
Try some free flow writing around the experience and see where this takes you. From blog post to short story to a novel, your writing ideas are only limited by your imagination.
12. Get To The Point
It's tempting to keep writing, filling page after page...yet good writing also gets to the point. By sticking to boundaries such as writing form and structure, the article becomes easy to understand. Your reader knows what you are trying to convey and how to take action.
Use short sentences. Tighten your words and phrases. Avoid clichés. Adapt your tone. Break down each main theme into bullet points or headings.
Start to see what your reader wants and make sure each sentence you choose is leading towards giving your reader great value.
13. Share And Expand Your Social Networks
Once you have finished writing a blog post, article or ebook it's important to put yourself out there. Marketing your work means being brave enough to share it - first with the people you know it will help and then secondly with an audience who may not understand you yet.
Consider the value of your writing in your audience's eyes. How will it improve their lives? Remember to connect with your readership where possible - reply to their comments, answer their questions and give them positive feedback or encouragement for their efforts.
You may also want to ask yourself how your writing can influence, engage and persuade your readers...Perhaps you have a product that can provide a solution to one of their problems? Find out your audience's interests and then go there. Promote your blog posts on a wide variety of social media channels where they may be hanging out.
Once you know who your target audience is and where they hang out online, see if you can determine what your readership's problems are. Then choose to emotionally engage with and directly show how your products or services can solve this for them. Going forward, this will also give you a better indication of what your audience are looking for.