How Good Writing Becomes Good


typing-laptop

Image from: zmescience.com

I like articles that are easy to read. They’re simply constructed (you’d sense how they were composed by a relaxed spirit) and the thoughts are easy to grasp. You can read them smoothly and continuously without stopping to figure out what a confusing phrase or sentence is trying to say.

Good articles like that seem written easily and in one sitting, as if the writer had an idea, sat down and wrote it in a moment, and then published. But actually, good simple writing is not that easy to make. It takes a lot of writing and re-writing–and more re-writing–until the final product comes out terse, compact, easy to read, fun, but meaty and tasty.

Just Write It Down

After thinking of a topic and researching on it, you sit down and just write it all down on paper (Oops! I should say, “type it all down on your laptop.” I’m missing the good old days!). When you’re done, read it in one passing. Then read it again for editing.

Edit without Mercy

Take out everything that serves only to clutter your article or prolong it needlessly or senselessly. Get rid of everything that does not belong or contribute anything. See what words you can do without. See if the article can thrive well without them. And get rid of everything repetitious. Saying an idea once is enough. Well, sometimes you need to emphasize, so okay, say it once more. But don’t say it a third time and never do it often. Get it? I mean, you get it?

But don’t overdo your editing so that you come out with a bland, monotonous article that sounds like a robot. Make sure it’s still fun to read aside from being informative and readers see you in it. Don’t do too much trimming down and butchering so that all you have left is, “I love to write.”

Then Read It Again

After dissecting and “butchering” your article so that it comes out brief and concise, read it again. Can you read it smoothly with one passing? Or do you have to stop now and then because there are broken thoughts, or some phrases are too shortened they’ve lost their meaning or don’t make sense? Do necessary re-touches, fine tuning, or re-wording. Composition is a work of art. Do a masterpiece each time.

When everything’s smooth and easy and quick to grasp (and your personality is there intact) then hit “publish.”

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