Latest posts by techwriter (see all)
- 7 Tips to Write Great Essays - January 5, 2018
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Writing well and writing a lot are closely linked.
Take a look around you.
Usually, people who write well write a lot too. And those who cannot write well cannot write anything at all. There does not seem to be a middle ground.
There is a reason why that is so. A very good reason.
It’s an internal connection that may open the doors of both creativity and productivity for you, simultaneously.
Here are the keys to this not-so-mysterious phenomenon, as I see it:
Do not write about a subject just because “it’s popular” or “it brings money” because you can’t. The result would be a bone-dry piece of nothing. You wouldn’t enjoy reading what you’ve written. Would you cook anything if you knew you’d throw it directly into the thrash can?
I, for example, am writing this article with great joy and enthusiasm and that’s why I expect this (hopefully) to be a good one. I already have a good feeling inside about sharing this insight that I’ve gained over many years as a professional writer. Writing this essay is its own reward for me. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have written it.
Second point is, try to have an approximate understanding of WHY you’re writing what you’re writing.
That does not have to be a well-constructed and tightly-argued reason. No. It can be just a feeling, or a sensation, but you still have to be fully aware of it. That’s why drugs and alcohol (despite the rumors) do not go well with good writing since it requires you to be fully aware of yourself, your mind and your heart. Your radar must be actively scanning your interior landscape when you write so you’ll know why you’re doing it.
The awareness of your inner purpose will set the color and fragrance of your canvas. That’s what you’ll leave the reader with. Without that “why” there’s no point in either writing or reading anything. And all bad writing lacks that “why” element.
There’s no such thing as writing “everything” about a topic. All writing is partial, incomplete, selective. The reason “why” you are writing something is the tool with which you take one slice from Reality and make it your own.
Life is the big pie. You take the narrow serving knife of “why” and serve your readers a delicious slice.
If you don’t have the “why” then you can’t serve the pie. Then all you have is a feeling of getting lost. Unclear motivation is mud and it’s no fun serving or eating that.
Be squeaky-glass clear and write with joy. You’ll see that, in the process, you’ll start writing a lot too.