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Writing to express

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Writing to express
August 10, 2019 Wedding Anniversary Wishes 3 comments

Clarity is the goal when writing to convey meaning to your reader. Write to express, not to impress. Communication is a mix of vision and.

As if self-esteem isn’t already at an all time low, now every second can add to an already humiliating life experience.

You pour your heart into your blog. Tears are flowing as you share the most intimate part of your soul with the Universe. You’re tedious, as a good, professional writer always is, to go back and clean it up; dotting i’s and crossing t’s. You push post, and then you wait.

You wait, and wait, and wait.

Suddenly, “ding,” you get a notification. Anticipation skyrockets, but instantly plummets when you discover you received a notification about someone else’s post that was voted suggested reading for you.

You go back to waiting and waiting, and then you can’t stand it any longer. You break into your blogging platform thinking there must be some type of technical glitch. Someone must have read what you wrote, right? Then you are slapped in the face with the truth — not one damn like or recommend.

“What does a writer have to do to get likes these days, buy them?”

Oh, wait, that can be arranged too.

Human beings need validation. It builds our self worth. Validation tells us we are ok. Especially as a writer, you want to know that you’re writing what people want to hear, right?

Well, why did you write it in the first place? Because you wanted someone to read it, or because you thought you had something to say?

Write to express not to impress, it’s key to longevity as a writer. — Jeff Crume

Don’t get caught up in dings, notifications, bells and whistles. You are a writer. You write because it’s who you are, not what you do.

You write because if you don’t you are most miserable. Writing is your own therapy. If someone else benefits, more power to them.

If you’re in a slump, go back and dig out some of your first writings. Look at why you started writing in the first place.

Imagine that someone on the other side of the planet who stumbles upon your page. With tear-filled eyes, they read through your post and hope begins filling their heart once. Once so broken, so abused, having lost all hope, they get your words. I mean really, really get them. And what you say changes their life, forever!

The hell with likes! Don’t buy them. You can enlarge anything if you have enough money. But your heart, and the heart of your audience is not for sale!

Your pen is your candle. Your words are your flame. Someone needs you to light their way. Write because it’s what you get to do for someone else, not because of what someone else can do for you.

Write to express, not impress, it’s the key to longevity as a writer.

Hello, there! Today I will talk about writing content, UX Writing, Copywriting, Microcopy, whatever you call it. It has different names, but one goal.

Write to Express, Not to Impress

writing to express

Do you use creative writing to express yourself?

A lot of young people first come to creative writing because they have a burning desire to express themselves. Emotions are running high, ideas are flying, and opinions are in full supply. What better way to get it all off your chest than writing it down?

Self-expression is the heart and soul of all forms of creative writing from fiction and poetry to memoirs and essays. We combine our inner thoughts and feelings with what we perceive in the outer world and put it into words.

For some of us, self-expression couldn’t be easier. Give us a pen and a piece of paper and our ideas will come pouring out. For others, putting thoughts and feelings into clear, coherent sentences and paragraphs is a challenge. Everything comes out garbled, and only the writer can make sense of it.

Freedom and Self-Expression in Creative Writing

Sometimes self-expression comes across as little more than navel gazing, narcissism, or pontification. If we’re writing strictly for personal reasons, it doesn’t matter whether we write clearly or in a way that interests other people. But if we want to write professionally, to connect with an audience, our personal expressions must be clear and they must go beyond ourselves; they must resonate with readers.

Grammar and vocabulary are important: We need to communicate clearly when we’re writing for an audience. Personal shorthand, rambling, and bad grammar have to be reined in. When it’s difficult to put our thoughts and feelings into words, we need a bigger vocabulary. If we study the language and rules of written communication, then our written self-expression will be clear and coherent and more likely to keep readers on the page.

Honesty is the best policy: The best writing is full of truth. Even fiction and poetry, however abstract or fantastical, contain a kind of honesty that comes from the writer being forthright. That means we must embrace who we are. We have to be ourselves. Don’t write what you think people want to hear and don’t hold back your personal truths.

Connect with readers: We’ve all read essays and poems that were all about me, me, me (me being the writer). You can certainly write an interesting piece about yourself (your thoughts, ideas, or experiences), but in order for people to find value in your writing, it has to include them in some way. You can write drafts for yourself, but during revision, give some thought to your readers. Why should they read this? How will they benefit from it?

Know your purpose: Why do you write? Do you have ideas you want to share? Are you trying to influence people’s opinions? Will you help people see the world from a fresh perspective? Is your goal to enlighten or entertain? A little of both? When you know why you’re writing, you’ll have a much better chance at writing something worthwhile.

How Do You Express Yourself?

I’ve come across a lot of writers who insist on the sheer pleasure or therapeutic value of self-expression through creative writing. There’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, it’s healthy to give yourself a personal writing space that isn’t influenced by the thought of someone else reading what you’ve written. It’s also good writing practice, because there’s freedom in writing without inhibition. But what if you want to take your writing to the next level? What if you’re ready to turn your self-expressions into poems, stories, or essays that people will read?

When you write, do you think about how readers will respond? Do you plan your creative writing projects with an audience in mind or do you focus solely on self-expression? How much of yourself do you put into your writing?

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writing to express

Writing your first blog post can feel overwhelming yet not impossible. You can start with confidence if you begin by accepting that the act itself is powerful and the influence of words knows no limit. Once you do that, the rest is a matter of practicing, iterating, and keeping the motivation high. 

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We live in a world where the importance of written communication increased dramatically. We rely on technology and digital contact heavily. From the way we keep in touch with the dear ones to how we approach the people we admire and increase our chances to create a digital presence — we often use tools where writing is king

To make sure you achieve your goals through written communication, you first need to understand the macro context and where do you want to fit. There are no recipes, but there are definitely good practices that you can follow to kick-off your first blog posts with a strong feeling of confidence.

Before putting all the pieces together, allow me to provide a short story about why you could trust what I am going to say. In the end, you want to make sure you’re in good company, learning from knowledgeable people, right? I would do the same if I were you.

I have 10+ years since I’m wearing the communication and storytelling hat daily. I’ve been active in this field since I came to college and ever since I tried to keep track with the changes and the dynamic of this world from multiple roles: freelancer, volunteer, marketer, copywriter, community builder.

Along the way, I had a hard time finding reliable solutions regarding how I could improve my writing skills and make the most out of them on the Internet. 

After all the ups-and-downs I experienced, I came to draw a few insights that can help you start your blog posts and get rid of the hassle, both mentally and practically. 

Therefore, I want to help you have a more accessible entry-point and walk you through the basics of written communication within the digital environment. What follows is not a blueprint nor a rigid framework, so feel free to take whatever fits you. However, I encourage you to at least test some of the ideas before assuming that they will not work. You might be surprised. 

Why do you write blog posts in the first place?

It may sound naive, but we can easily take writing for granted. This activity’s so integrated into our daily lives that we no longer question why we write or what we want to accomplish because we prefer this way of communication instead of others.

In the end, it’s far more convenient and comfortable to chat with others from our nest, office, or at the end of the world, than making an effort to get dress, drive, and meet the person face-to-face, right?

Writing is such a self-conscious act because it forces us to think: What do we believe in, so deeply, that we’ll write it down and share it with others?

— Claire Lew (@clairejlew) July 26, 2018

There are tons of reasons why we write: from the functional arguments to emotional reasoning, both are valid. It depends on the outcome that we want to get.

However, there are a few straightforward advantages of why writing matters, and you should consider:

#1. Gain more clarity

Putting everything on paper (both digital and offline) helps you draw a clearer picture of your thoughts. When you can observe what you wrote, it’s easier to find the red thread as well as the flaws and inconsistencies of your ideas. You can take notes, underline repetitive snippets, and have a clear picture of your work. 

On the opposite side of the spectrum, in oral communication, you can make far more mistakes without the same consequences. It doesn’t mean that you should have them; it’s just the fact that paraverbal and non-verbal gestures help you.

#2. Improve you communication skills 

Sharing the particular way you see the world and refer to it weights a lot. Expressing your ideas helps you have an impact and maybe even change it for the better. Your unique point of view can attract people who share the same core values and want to join your tribe. Nothing beats the feeling of sharing a common understanding with other individuals. 

Not only you will no longer feel you are alone and insecure, but you have the chance to learn a lot and even improve your blog posts. 

#3. Drive impact through your blog posts 

Blogging can help you impact other people’s lives through your bold and courageous ideas. Show them different angles, perspectives and move folks around the world towards a meaningful goal. Your words can capture attention and interest and transform a bunch of random people into followers, believers, maybe even collaborators. 

As a blogger, you need to be open-minded in understanding a wide range of arguments because it will help you craft better articles. It does not mean that you should start pleasing people and create blog posts which serve all kinds of needs. On the contrary, you should stick to your beliefs and interests.

#4. Explore the freedom you have 

Exploring new worlds can impact not only the way you’re thinking but also the way you’re understanding what’s happening around you. Writing is an act of freedom where you can showcase the real you without strings attached. In so many senses, we enjoy the best time of our lives. The simple act of having the chance to create a digital voice and spread your ideas means a lot. 

Through your blog posts, you have plenty of freedom to do that in a way that matches your vision. By being transparent and consistent, you will attract likeminded people and from there you can kick-off all kinds of partnerships and projects.

People used this form of communication since forever and continuously adjusted to the transformations that took place along the way. From sending a letter from the war to writing pre-defined SMS. The need to write lies within us and became even stronger. 

It’s not something meant to fit only storytellers, writers, copywriters, poets, etc. No. We all have the potential to write amazing blog posts that say something about who we are. In the end, the ultimate goal of good writing is to put a piece of ourselves out there and invite people to take a look through the cracks.

Next, I share with you the main ideas you should keep in mind when it comes about how you should write your blog posts. The first and the one that will come after that. Ready to make your content shine in the digital world?

How to write blog posts on your terms?

I typed how do we write on Google, and 1,820,000,000 results popped up. It’s crazy to see how much information is available out there and definitely crazy to start thinking about which one is valuable and which not.

The irony is that almost everyone out there has a magic solution to share, a tip to take into consideration, a recipe to follow. In specific contexts, most of the sources out there can be somehow relevant and useful to a certain degree. 

However, there’s a thin line between what you need to know to become better with writing blog posts and all the information on the Internet.

My recommendation is always to be authentic, trust your skills and shape your particular way of writing. 

people always ask me how to be a better writer. my answer is always the same: read, read, READ. reading teaches by example, shows you the curiosity of others and is proven to increase brain function/connectivity.

— paul jarvis (@pjrvs) June 18, 2018

Practice makes perfect, as they say, and it’s definitely true. What they forget to mention is that starting is the first step and often the hardest challenge.

Once you kick-off and develop a writing habit, you will craft your skills and become a better blogger from one day to another. 

As in life, the best results come with time, hard work, and determination, so don’t try to find shortcuts. They not only mislead you but often they bring you in the same place.

From my 10 years of experience both as a digital communicator, professional copywriter, and now an active storyteller, I dare to suggest you a few writing tips you should take into consideration. If you start integrating in your daily writing routine, you will not only notice better articles on your blog and website, and you will also gain confidence and joy to do more of what you love.

Let’s take it one insight at a time and see what does it mean in practice. 

#1 Write the way you talk

Write for one reader, not for an entire audience. Make it personal and meaningful by expressing your ideas as you’d be in front of one friend, not a bunch of people. Create an emotional connection with the reader and guide him through the story as a good old pal. Assume your voice in writing as you do in oral communication and don’t be afraid to be genuine in crafting every single message. 

Please do not copy-paste big bloggers out there or famous TED speakers because you are you and they are they. People are smart and feel fakeness, and once they observe that you are not credible will never come back.

#2. Write with responsibility 

Be true to yourself and let people know about your experience, not other folks’ learnings. Own it. No matter if you’re in your 20s, be brave to write about how you feel, about your hobbies, your struggles at the moment. On top of that, you are not alone in this game, and similar people will resonate with you. 

Responsibility also means to be transparent and sincere when it comes to your blog posts. Don’t make things up, don’t cheat, don’t offer half of the truths, don’t do any harm in terms of how you pack information. Blogging is serious, and you should treat your audience accordingly, especially if you want to be more than yet another www out there.

#3. Write for yourself first 

Express your personality and way of thinking through your writing. You are the first who reads that blog post, so make sure it resonates with your inner-why. Be trustworthy and put yourself out there. If you start writing content from your experiences, your visitors will notice, and if your blog posts bring them some sort of value, they will stick to your stories. 

“I love meeting my readers, but I am so aware that the person who writes the books that they read is the best version of me — the most hopeful, the most helpful version of me. In my day-to-day life, I am as confused, & stupid, & pessimistic as anybody.”

— Lucy Bellwood is on Tour (@LuBellWoo) June 22, 2018

Put yourself in their shoes and see how you feel: does the blog post feel authentic, reliable, meaningful or is just a bunch of lines thrown out there without aiming to achieve a clear goal.

What you could write about when you are at the beginning?

It is often said that there’s an answer for everything out there, so there’s not much left to cover. My belief is somewhere on the opposite side of the spectrum.

Even though it’s true that we are exposed to a massive load of information, it doesn’t mean that nuances are not important. In fact, we live a time where we genuinely need them.

Differences are the engine of the world, and once we accept and internalize them, we will definitely live more meaningful lives.

When it comes to blog posts, since you are in your early days, I suggest a few ways in which you can pack your content. Of course, there are far more, but I highly believe that you need to narrow the gap and start with just a limited set of options because it will give you direction and purpose. As they say, constraints are liberating.

#1. Personal stories

Share what makes you-you. Experiences, wins, failures, mistakes, beliefs —anything that says something meaningful about the person behind the scenes. 

If you are a creative type of person, be generous and write about your process, how you get things done, what keeps your wheels spinning, what brings you joy when things are hard to handle.

#2. Common topics with a twist

Give people a different perspective on a particular topic you are knowledgeable about, and help them change their day-to-day lens. 

Invest time and energy to repack everything to suit your style of writing. As I already mentioned, differences are significant, so be brave and share yours within the blog articles. You will have the pleasure to see that there are more people who resonate with your approach.

#3. Bold statements

Showcase the values you stand for by writing opinionated articles. Boldly express your personality and make room for people to let you know if they echo your arguments or not. 

Bring your strong mantras at the surface and write posts about where you land to some conclusions, how does this attitude help you, and so on.

The best bloggers out there show up fully and put in writing their ideas about the world. Feel free to do the same.

Choose one that feels like is the closest to who you are today and what you plan to achieve with your blog. Document what you experience during the writing process because it will help you get a clear perspective on what’s the next step and how you should continue the journey of publishing new blog posts.

A step-by-step writing process to get started right away

First of all, good writing means good reading. There’s no other way around. People who don’t read a lot have a tough time writing well. 

It’s the same principle that applies to other forms of creative work as well. Take photographers, for instance. Good artists travel, meet people in person, spend time in solitude, are active folks who have a deeper understanding of how the world works.

“Words have energy and power with the ability to help, to heal, to hinder, to hurt, to harm, to humiliate, and to humble.” — Yehuda Berg

A simple yet effective process to put the above advice in practice is to do the following exercise. Don’t overthink every single step from the bellow list; just go through the entire adventure and take it from there.

  1. Choose a topic that you are interested in or have the know-how. It can be anything as long as you manifest excitement and a dose of genuine curiosity. Or, on the other hand, you gathered plenty of experience that could be useful for others.
  2. Write a rough first draft.
    Don’t take it too seriously; just throw all the thoughts you have in mine related to the topic. It can be pieces of information, half of the paragraphs, quotes, name of writers or related articles.
  3. Write a one-paragraph article about your idea.
    This way, you have a summary at your fingertips, and you can keep track with during the process. Just put together the main idea into one single paragraph where you try to concise everything.
  4. Define a clear structure to help you keep the red thread
    Intro (the central idea that you will explore in the article),
    Main sections (headings and the core message)
    Conclusion (an insight you hope people will react to or sleep on)
  5. Go in-depth. Take each part and write down the ideas and arguments that fit that particular area. Now you start adding layers of information that you are going to adjust later to make sure all match the red thread.
  6. Edit what you wrote without mercy and get the garbage out.
    Read it out loud and see if it makes sense if you can cut some sidenotes or maybe you can rephrase ideas and make them easier to grasp. It is essential to read it loudly because you will not miss any flaws.
  7. Ask for a second opinion.
    Give these pieces of content to close friends or family and ask them what made them memorable, touched them and how, and what was hard to understand or to follow. Kindly ask them to provide these answers in writing because once they take the time to do that they will accord the necessary time and attention.
  8.  Edit again.
    Try to integrate the feedback you received it in the best possible way, without pleasing everyone or making a bazaar of information out of everything you got. It’s your call to filter and keep the must-have only.
  9. Publish. Celebrate the fact that you published your first blog posts on your terms. Yaaay!

Writing is an excellent way of expressing your unique personality and a crucial skill you want to master on your blog. On top of that, it’s a form of freedom hard to beat by other forms of communication.

You can always explore new perspectives and discover a new world through writing digital content. It’s not a matter of how many words you use; it’s how you craft them to touch people’s hearts, as Seth Godin reminds us: “I wonder why anyone would hesitate to be generous with their writing.”

What holds you to put the best version of yourself out there and start writing today?

Clarity is the goal when writing to convey meaning to your reader. Write to express, not to impress. Communication is a mix of vision and.

How to write your first blog post with confidence?

writing to express

Hello, there!

Today I will talk about writing content, UX Writing, Copywriting, Microcopy, whatever you call it. It has different names, but one goal — reach out to the heart of the user and increase the conversion rate!

How many advertisements or brand campaigns do we come across every day? Hundreds? Thousands? We don’t have a count, actually.

Everyone is trying to grab your attention. Every brand or media-house, only wants a minute of your time. Well, even a minute is too much, for them even ten seconds would suffice, that’s why the ad spaces and hoardings sell out so expensive on prominent high-streets of the world!

But what should you, as a UX Writer or a copywriter — do to sell out? What should you focus on the most to target maximum users 👩‍🏫 ?

Back in 1900s, Shakespeare was considered to be one of the legendary writing icons (well, he still is), but if someone writes in Shakespeare style today, he might not be able to sell his brand!

This toothpaste hast everything, to maketh thy day brighter!

Written on a dingy board under a dimly lit bus-stop, this sign will be read by only those passengers who missed their bus and are stuck there for next four hours! Hence — IGNORED. That is what this would be.

Similarly, sometimes writers do not realise that they’re writing to ‘express’ and most of the readers/target-audience do not understand such an English!

I am an Indian, who knows three languages — English, Hindi and Punjabi. But honestly, I do not know the in-depth morphology or semantics of either of the languages. I am decently well-read to understand what someone wants to say, I can read, write and understand, but if you ask me to translate something to ‘pure-authentic-Punjabi’, I might brutally fail in it, even though it is my mother-tongue.

Now, let me explain why does that happen, and what should be done to come up with amazing write-ups that connect with the reader —

  1. We live in a world with a routine where we interact with people who speak languages that we do not. Hence, one language becomes a common medium of sharing your feelings. For me, that common language is English. And now the scenario is such that I feel more comfortable in expressing myself in English, because that’s the language I use/speak for most part of my day!
  2. We think and then we write. Writing is nothing but a translation of your thoughts, and the more you practice ‘having a conversation with yourself’ in a language, the better you can write in it. Like right now, I am reading all these sentences in my mind, and typing them out. That way I know, that they’re right, understandable and grammatically correct as well. Have a conversation with yourself everyday. Tell yourself how your day went, and write that down. You will be able to point out mistakes and improve yourself!
  3. When you write to impress, you miss out on the flow. Your write-up maybe written in simple, plain English words, without using those fancy Shakespearean language, but if it has a flow, its good to go. You don’t need to show off your vocabulary in a write-up, rather you need something that the readers can connect with. Something that they can ‘literally imagine’ happening, when they’re reading your content. If there is no imagination, there is no spark in your writing!
  4. Write crisp, short sentences! Every sentence is like music. When it has same number of words, you read it in same tone. For example. This sentence. Two words. Very boring. Very monotonous. Got it? You read it in a single tone, because every sentence has only two words here. Similarly, you need to break the monotony by keeping your sentences different in length. If one sentence is too long, do not make the next one long as well, because that’s where the reader’s flow is broken, and his thoughts will wander elsewhere. You want them to be attentive. So attentive that they read till the last word with same attention, that they started the article with.
  5. Lastly — you don’t want to divert from the subject. Whenever you are writing anything, may it be a non-fiction article or a fiction love story, you should always keep in mind the context and subject about which you’re writing. Losing on the context would mean death of the write-up. Reader can’t understand why the author just went haywire from here? The hero was going to propose to the heroine, but now his phone rang and there is so much detail about that phone call itself, that the entire excitement of the reader vanished. Now he doesn’t give a damn about whether the hero proposes to the heroine or not! Don’t do that. Do not, I repeat, run away from the context.

Reading is a hobby that even super-heroes are proud to show off! But as a writer, it is your duty to deliver something memorable, after all with great power, comes great responsibility!

That’s all for now, folks! Let’s keep sharing our views and make this community awesome! 😎

WATCH THE VIDEO ON THEME: Joshua David MG: Writing to Express Yourself - Why We Create

I am writing this letter to express my sincere gratitude for the contribution made by my coach to improve and enhance my life. I do appreciate the time he spent.

writing to express
Written by Kibar
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