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How To Improve Your Writing And Get Your Reader’s Attention

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1 year ago

How To Improve Your Writing And Get Your Reader’s Attention

Introduction

I have been writing to earn money for a few years already. I admit though that writing is not my skill. But over the years, I have learned to improve my writing skills. I don’t claim to be a writing expert. I still rely on different tools to correct and improve my writing. That’s what I will with you in this post.

In this post, I will share with you the following

Different Writing Tools:

  • Catch Your Readers Attention With Your Title

  • Focus on Your Writing Using Distraction-Free Text Editor

  • Improve Your Grammar With Grammarly

  • Check the Readability Score of Your Content

Tips in Composing Your Article

  • Avoid sophisticated terms.

  • Use Short Sentences and Paragraphs

  • Use Active Voice More Often

  • Use Different Text Formatting

  • Divide Your Article Into Smaller Sections With Header Tags

  • Use Bullets

  • Use Bold, Italics, Underline to emphasize words or phrases

  • Use Related Images

Different Writing Tools

I came across the different writing tools from the different writing platforms that I have used and written for. Including the SEO tools in WordPress platforms. Here are some of the tools that you can use.

Catch Your Reader’s Attention With Your Title

Having a catchy title doesn’t mean you are using clickbait. But your title must be engaging and catch the reader’s attention. The basics are having titles starting with:

  • How-to ... (Tutorial)

  • 5 Ways To ... (List)

  • Why I Love ... (Question plus the use of emotional words)

Then you to be aware of the length of your title, the number of words, and the number of characters. If your title is too short or too long, it will have a negative impact, both on search engines and readers.

To help you improve your title, try one of these free online tools.

You may use them alternately and see where you are comfortable with them. Personally, I use Monster Insight. These online tools not only will rate your title but give suggestions on how to improve your title. After using it a number of times, composing a good title will come naturally. Always aim to get at least 70 points score.


Focus on Your Writing Using Distraction-Free Text Editor

I don’t use a sophisticated word processor. If I am on my Windows Laptop, I am using Focus Writer. It’s a Free distraction-free text editor. Meaning, I only see the workspace on my screen. No menu, no ruler, no pages.

If I am on my tablet or phone, I am using Google Docs. I tried some other free tools such as JotterPad before. But I stuck with Google Docs so I can sync my articles through Google Drive. Although with the paid version of JotterPad, you can configure it to access Google Drive.

Improve Your Grammar With Grammarly

Whether you are using your mobile device or desktop there is a Grammarly for you. For mobile devices, you can install the Grammarly keyboard. If you are on a Windows laptop or desktop though, you can install the extension for Chrome and other Chrome-based browsers. If you want to use Microsoft Word as your editor, you can also install Grammarly for Windows.

Grammarly checks, and whenever applicable- automatically correct, your spelling and grammar. This includes correcting the punctuation, spaces, use of the right words, preposition, etc...

Errors detected by Grammarly

In a mobile device, the Grammarly keyboard will automatically correct common mistakes and suggest corrections whenever necessary. If you are keen on learning, you will slowly improve your writing if you try to remember the corrections that Grammarly suggests.

If you are on Windows and using Focus Writer, you won’t have direct access to Grammarly. However, the next tool requires you to use a browser. Where Grammarly can be used altogether with the next tool.

Check the Readability Score of Your Content

The readability score shows how easy the readers can understand the written text. The readability of text depends on its content (the complexity of its vocabulary and syntax) and its presentation

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Readability

This means the lower your readability score means, your text is difficult to understand. The higher your score is, the easier it is to understand.

Readability Schore

What’s the implication? Put yourself on the reader’s side. Would you continue reading an article that you don’t understand?

If you get a score of 65 and above, this means a child in the 6th grade can easily understand your article. You should consider that your readers are coming from different parts of the globe. People from different parts of the world have different levels of understanding of English. Therefore, it is best to consider writing a more understandable article.

To check the readability you use one of these free online tools:

I will share with you how to improve the readability score of your article in the next set of tips.

Tips in Composing Your Article (How to improve your readability score)

Avoid sophisticated terms.

Oftentimes we want to sound highly knowledgeable by using sophisticated words. However, using such sophisticated words will make your article hard to understand. There use simple English words as much as possible.

Use Short Sentences and Paragraphs

I came across some articles with very long sentences and paragraphs. Avoid using compounded sentences. Compounded sentences may be composed of at least two independent clauses with related ideas, it is best to split it into two sentences.

In the same thought, a paragraph should express only one thought. As much as possible express that thought in three to five sentences. More than that might make your paragraph more complicated.

Use Active Voice More Often

In the active voice, the subject always “does” the action of the sentence. Chronologically, the subject will come before the verb in the sentence.

An example is:

“Josh ate the watermelon.”

compared that to the passive voice

“The watermelon was eaten by Josh”

Why use active voice?

In an article that I read, active voice is more engaging, it is easier to read and helps you connect to your reader. It doesn’t mean though that you can’t use passive voice. But use it sparingly and only when necessary.

Read more about the importance of active voice here: https://www.copypress.com/blog/importance-active-voice-content/

Use Different Text Formatting

Text formatting includes Bold, Italics, Underline, Bullets, Header tags (H1, H2, ... H6). They can be used to emphasize a word, a point, among others.

Just imagine you are reading an article of more than 1,000 words long without any formatting, like in the image below.

One of my articles before formatting

Divide Your Article Into Smaller Sections With Header Tags

Divide your article into several sub-topics. Each subtopic is a section. Separate each section using Header tags.

Header tags format the text making it bigger than the rest. In HTML there are 6 different Header tags with H1 as the largest and H6 the smallest. Normally H1 to H3 is used.

  • H1 is normally used for the main heading or the title of your article

  • H2 is used to emphasize subtopics

  • H3 (not available in Read.Cash) is sometimes used if a section needs to be divided into another section.

In what I have learned from a utility known as Yoast SEO, a section must be 300 words or less. Just like in sentences and paragraphs, keep each section short.

Notice how I divided this article into several topics?.

Use Bullets to emphasize a list of a number of points.

Bullets (and if available numbered list) would help emphasize a number of points, or a list. Your readers will easily see the content of the list then you write it in a sentence form

Use Bold, Italics, Underline to emphasize words or phrases.

There are no definite rules as to which one to use on what. But here are some common practice:

  • use Bold to emphasize a word or a phrase;

  • use Italics if you are defining a word;

  • underline is also used to emphasize a word or a phrase. But this is used sparingly by most authors to avoid confusion with a hyperlink.

Use Related Images

Lastly, related images are important. They could help your readers picture out what you are trying to say. Also, images help break the monotony of your article.

Final Thoughts

I hope these tips would help you improve your writing. These tips are based on what I learned from different teachings and leanings. Even if English is not your native language. Even if you are struggling to write straight English, don’t be discouraged. Keep on writing and keep on learning.

A child did not learn to write poetry in a day. (I still don’t know how to write a poem). A fellow noiser (https://noise.cash/u/MarSou) shared how she used to struggle in writing in English when she started posting online. But when I came to know her on another platform, it did not occur to me that she had that struggle.

Thank You For Reading.

Reference:

https://writingexplained.org/grammar-dictionary/active-voice

https://www.copypress.com/blog/importance-active-voice-content/

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Comments

Wow. Very helpful. Thanks for referring me to this. I've bookmarked it, cos I need to go through it over and over again.

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10 months ago

very helpful.. i have not yet used the links mentioned here. of all the tools mentioned, I have only tried Grammarly ..

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1 year ago

nice

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1 year ago