Contrary to what people say, writing skills can be developed and honed. All you need is passion to express yourself in words.
I was always a reader, voraciously read what I could get my hands on. And that is how my love for words emerged. I then started participating in essays and debates in school and slowly and steadily learnt to express myself clearly through writing. There are many things you get to learn about your own self when you start writing. I learnt that I would like to inspire or move people emotionally who read my articles. I learnt that I write because I want to leave an impression and that I am not too patient when it comes to writing – I don’t spend as much time on editing as I should. I know that I don’t like too much attention by making my blogs public but I am slowly forcing myself to write more in public. Writing for me, above all is a soul-searching exercise.
So if you like words and you want to express yourself, and haven’t tried your hand at writing before, here is a small capsule sized writing process. Just a checklist you can stick up on your desk to see that it is not all that difficult – all you need is to follow a systematic process that works for you.
- Objective – have a clear objective in mind. Why are you writing this piece? Is it to provoke a thought/debate or provide the audience your perspective on the theme? It is imperative to get the objective first and then write accordingly.
- Target audience – As with the objective, the target audience should be decided before-hand. If you are writing professionally then your tone and language will be completely different from you writing on your personal blog. I like to write on various topics simultaneously and hence the broth but I understand if a reader wants to read only my reviews or marketing blogs.
- Need – What does the target want to know? If you are a marketer, then your target audience will be a marketing community who might want to know more about relevant themes in marketing. It is important to identify the need and the gap that the target wants to read about to make it personalized for that community.
- Themes – Once you have identified the need that you are trying to address, themes become all the more important. Pick a theme that is trending and find a white space in that area – something that people have not written about. Even it has already been covered and you have a different way in which you want to express, go ahead and complete it.
- Content – Keep your content simple, make it personal, use analogies and give examples.
- Platforms – With many publishing platforms in the market now, it becomes all the more important to figure out where you want to publish. If you are you writing an important piece on ‘Future of marketing’, and then you might want to pitch your ideas to editorial magazines which will give you instant global reach. If your goal is to something fast and shared with your peers, LinkedIn might be good platform for you.
- Plan and promotions – An extremely important step, plan your articles and promotions around them. Make sure you use your network to spread the word. Use social media extensively.
I am sure all this is intrinsic knowledge you might have already but my objective was to give you capsule sized tips that have worked for me. Having said all of this, one thing that works is writing from your heart.
Is your writing process different from mine? I would like to know how.