Whether you’re pursuing a career in writing or not, excellent writing and communication skills are often at the top of the list when it comes to job qualifications. In this post, we will explore five simple steps that you can take in order to drastically improve your writing and set yourself apart from other job applicants.
Disclaimer: Following these steps may result in improved grades and better writing skills.
Step 1. Increase Your Reading Time
You may not have the time or energy to read books anymore, but reading is crucial to the development of strong language skills. Find a blog, news source, or a short book and spend thirty minutes each day looking at it. Not only will you notice an increase in your vocabulary, but your sentence structure will improve dramatically.
Step 2. Borrow Catch Phrases
The best writers borrow from others. Look at the writing style of the author you enjoy reading and ask yourself some critical questions. What do you like most about it? What do you like least about it? Why do you like this author over others?
Often the answer is in the style of writing. The sentences are easy to read and the words flow together. In order to improve your writing, mimic the style of your favourite authors, blending them together and improving the parts that you don’t like to suit you better. This way you are creating your own unique style while at the same time learning from the best.
Step 3. Write on a Regular Basis
Writing is a skill, just like any other. Similar to learning how to play the piano like a professional, it is a skill that must be honed and practiced on a regular basis in order to achieve great results. Sure there is some talent involved, but with enough practice you can achieve great success. Set aside a few days every week and spend 30 minutes to an hour writing. You can write a blog, or keep a diary, it doesn’t matter as long as you’re writing. If you are keeping or contributing to a blog, you can use pieces as part of your portfolio in the future, allowing employers to see the extent of your skills.
Step 4. Re-Read Your Work
In this busy and fast-paced world, this step is harder than you think and requires a great deal of patience and commitment on your part. Once you write a piece, put it away for a few months and then come back to it reading over it carefully. Take notice of your mistakes, learn from them, and watch how your writing improves.
Step 5. Have Fun
It may be cliché, but it’s true. There will be times when you won’t want to write, so don’t force yourself. Instead, try to challenge yourself and enjoy the process. Read and write what you care about and you’ll be on your way to becoming a better writer!