writing

Confessions On How To Improve Writing Skills

If there’s one thing we do a lot as bloggers.. it’s writing. Learning how to improve writing skills is essential. Strong words, strong verbs, the metaphors we incorporate into our message. There’s a host of things that elevate our message and connect our audiences to what we write about.

Learn How To Improve Writing Skills Use Strong Verbs And Metaphor Examples

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How often do you intentionally think about improving your writing skills ?

Most likely, you have a list of things that you want to talk about and share with your readers. You write your blog posts and you wait for the traffic and hope to get some shares and conversions on either information or products that you’ve talked about that are connected to your content.

However, let’s consider that what I’ve said is basically the outline of your blogging process. In all honesty, it’s not about placing an intentional focus on improving your writing skills is it ?

That’s probably because at the core of writing, most believe that either you can do it or you can’t and that’s a pretty reasonable place to land in the writing landscape, but that’s not where we want to stay.

We’re bloggers and finding ways to improve your writing skills should be of interest to you because even if you don’t talk about it or think about it, who wants to be on the scale of 1 to 10.. a marginal blogger who writes “just marginally” at best ?

You may not think about it, but we want to do our best to write our best and that means taking intentional steps to get there.

Nevertheless, it’s a massive topic to get into and I’m only going to touch on a couple of things with the hope that I get you thinking about it with more focus and intention to looking at your skillset with the goal of continuous improvement in that area.

It’s not a knock on how you write, it’s about the goal of doing what you do in your blogging, writing and content development even better.

How to improve writing skills

Sometimes the most obvious things are worth saying and I’m going to say this in the context of this post because it’s relevant.

Reading what other people are writing in your niche can and will improve your writing skills.

You’re arming yourself with different perspectives, facts and in a subtle way you’re also internalizing the different content structures of how others write.

This can be an essential activity to engage in as you read content from others that are considered experts in the respective niches that you’re in. Additionally, it brings new ideas to the table that also add to your overall writing process.

Writing skills also improve by making the comparisons to your writing and to that of others as well.

List of strong verbs

There’s nothing wrong in admitting that you may not have a very strong vocabulary and admitting what we lack is where potential for growth begins.

It also goes without saying that the words we use can emphasize what we want to convey or they can create disinterest for the reader as well.

Improve your vocabulary so that you can draw from a wider array of words to use in your messaging and choose action verbs when you write.

Here's a good resource from Copyblogger that compliments words to strengthen the expression in your content.

With that said, you should use strong verbs to grab the readers’ attention and here’s a list of some of the best different types of action verbs that you can incorporate in your content as you work towards improving your writing skills:

abolish
accuse
achieve
act
advise
arrest
assault
beat
bite
blast
blow
bump
catch
chase
clap
climb
clip
clutch
coach
collect
collide
command
communicate
compile
complete
compose
conduct
conserve
consolidate
consult
control
coordinate
counsel
count
cram
crawl
create
creep
cripple
crouch
cut
dance
deal
decide
deck
deduct
define
delegate
delineate
describe
design
detect
determine
develop
devise
diagnose
dictate
dig
direct
discard
discover
display
dissect
ditch
dive
divert
do
dodge
dominate
dope
draft
drag
drain
dramatize
draw
dress
drill
drink
drip
drop
drown
drug
dry
duel
dunk
ease
edge
edit
eject
elevate
elope
elude
engage
enjoin
ensnare
enter
equip
erupt
escape
establish
estimate
evacuate
evade
evaluate
evict
examine
exert
exhale
exit
expand
expedite
expel
explode
experiment
explain
expose
extract
extricate
fade
fake
fall
falter
fan
fast
fear
feed
feel
fend
file
fill
finance
find
finger
fix
flap
flash
flatten
flay
flee
flick
flinch
fling
flip
flit
float
flog
flounder
flout
flush
fly
fondle
force
formulate
fornicate
found
fumble
grapple
grasp
greet
grind
grip
gripe
grope
grow
growl
grunt
guide
gyrate
hack
hail
hammer
handle
hang
harass
haul
head
help
hesitate
hide
hit
hitch
hobble
hoist
hold
hover
hug
hurl
hurtle
identify
ignore
increase
indict
induce
inflict
influence
inform
inject
injure
insert
inspect
inspire
install
invent
investigate
isolate
jab
judge
jump
keel
kick
kidnap
kill
kneel
knife
leap
learn
lecture
left
level
lick
limp
listen
log
maintain
make
manage
mangle
manipulate
march
meddle
mediate
meet
mentor
mimic
mingle
mobilize
mock
model
molest
monitor
motivate
mourn
move
mumble
murder
muster
mutilate
nab
nag
nail
needle
negotiate
nick
officiate
operate
order
organize
oversee
pack
paddle
page
pander
panic
parachute
parade
paralyze
park
parry
pause
paw
peel
peep
penetrate
perceive
perform
persuade
photograph
pick
picket
pile
pilot
pin
pinch
pirate
pitch
placate
plan
play
plod
plunge
pocket
poke
polish
pore
pose
pounce
pout
pray
predict
preen
prepare
prescribe
process
prod
produce
program
project
promote
prompt
propel
protect
provide
provoke
pry
publicize
pull
pummel
pump
punch
purchase
pursue
push
question
quit
race
raid
raise
rattle
ravage
rave
read
realize
receive
recline
recommend
reconcile
record
recoup
recruit
redeem
reduce
reel
refer
regain
rejoin
relate
relax
report
represent
repulse
research
resign
resist
resolve
respond
restore
retreat
retrieve
reveal
review
ride
rip
rise
scatter
scavenge
schedule
scold
scoop
score
scout
scrape
scrawl
scream
screw
scrub
sculpt
scuttle
select
sell
sense
serve
set
sever
sew
shake
shape
sharpen
shave
shear
shell
shield
shift
shiver
shock
shoot
shout
shove
shovel
show
shun
shut
sidestep
sigh
signal
sip
sit
size
skid
skim
slash
slay
slide
slug
smack
smear
smell
smuggle
snap
snare
snarl
snatch
snicker
sniff
snoop
snub
snuff
snuggle
soak
sock
soil
solve
spear
spell
spike
spray
spread
spring
sprint
spurn
spy
squeak
stack
stagger
stamp
stand
start
startle
steal
steer
step
stick
stifle
stomp
stop
strangle
strap
strike
strip
stroke
struck
stub
study
suck
summon
supply
support
surrender
survey
suspend
swagger
swallow
swap
sway
swear
swerve
swim
swing
swipe
switch
tackle
taunt
teach
tear
terrorize
test
thrash
thread
threaten
throw
tickle
tie
tilt
track
train
transfer
translate
trap
tread
treat
trip
trot
trounce
try
tuck
tug
tumble
turn
tutor
twist
type
understand
undertake
undo
undress
unfold
unify
unite
utilize
vacate
vanish
vault
vent
violate
wade
walk
wander
ward
watch
wave
wedge
weed
weigh
whack
whip
whistle
wield
wiggle
withdraw
work
wrench
wrestle
write
zap
zip

Having a list of various types of strong verbs to use has the potential to elevate your thoughts which can be particularly useful when you have a lot to say so be sure to refer back to this list as necessary.

Metaphor Examples

Additionally, when it comes to writing, don’t write like everyone else. Your writing should showcase who you are and your uniqueness.

Following all the conventional wisdom on writing will not help you to stand out among everyone else that you’re competing with on the message that you hope to convey to those who want to read the content that you’re developing.

So use metaphors. Some individuals are known to use these sparingly and others use them more generously in their writing.

If you’re not familiar with what good metaphors are, the best way to explain it would be to say that it’s basically a comparison made between two things that aren’t really alike but do share some commonality.

Why should you use them ?

Metaphors add a type of expression to your writing that you aren’t likely to have otherwise. A common one that I like to use is: the elephant in the room.

It refers to something that is obvious and if I use it contextually to talk about a question, I might say the following:

We all know that in blogging the elephant in the room is how do we get more traffic.

The obvious question for anyone developing a blog is how to get more visitors and that is the elephant in the room.

Finding examples of metaphors to use in your content adds a unique level of expression that enables you to express yourself that differs from others that may be writing similar content which is why I highly recommend finding relevant good metaphor examples to use in your blog posts.

Notably, while this post highlights my thoughts on how to improve your writing skills, the use of strong verbs and using different metaphor examples, it all centralizes around the activity of writing itself because that’s what we do as bloggers and content developers regardless of the niche you’re in.

Write often and do so in a way that personalizes who you are to showcase your uniqueness in the development of your writing skillset.

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#writing #content #candidwriter

How Long Is 1000 Words ? What's Up With All The Curiosity

1000 Words

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How Long Is 1000 Words

So I came across this question, “How long is 1000 words” ? Do you realize that there’s almost 100 million pages of results in Google for this question alone ? If your jaw dropped on that one, I completely understand. That’s pretty wild to me too. So why is there all this curiosity about the 1000 word yardline ? Whether you’re a student, a writer, blogger or a regular Joe that is into content marketing, I’m going to be very transparent about this. Writing 1000 words is not difficult to do. It may seem daunting when you look at that number thinking, how in the world am I going to come up with enough content to meet that kind of goal, I assure you that focusing on the number shouldn’t be your top priority. The plan for “how” you’re going to get there is going to help you immensely and when that plan has been developed, meeting and even surpassing one thousand words will be entirely doable and totally within your reach.

When I started this blog, as I have mentioned in another post that is somewhat related to what we're talking about here, I was replying to an article I had seen from Kissmetrics on article length. That blog post can be found here: Kissmetrics Post.

I talked about how my first blog post wasn’t even 100 words. What makes me laugh is that when I started to read about how content needs to be more "long form" as that is content that others tend to share more frequently.. the thought of anything in upwards of 1000 words, which was a far cry from how I had started seemed a bit overwhelming. So if thinking about putting that many words on a page makes your palms sweat, I assure you that with a little patience and focus on “knocking it out” you will find that, as I’ve said in the opening of this post that it’s very doable.

Writing Tips

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To me writing is like having a conversation. Granted it’s not entirely the same, but it’s not really all that different. We all have something to say and sometimes communication is recreational and then there are times when we’re obligated to put words on a page too and let's not forget all those other times as well.

Writing Structure And Process

Advice that I can offer is to put your thoughts together first. If you walk into this without any structure, it’ll be that much harder to get started and that can be very unnerving. Additionally, on the subject of structure, what I’m about to get into is a method that I have used in the past to put papers together and yes, blog posts too. Writing is writing and some people have more of an affinity for it and others struggle, but planning and process can simplify long form writing more than you know. With that said, doing the following may be something you’ll find helpful:

  • Make a folder on your computer and then decide on your topic.
  • Look for what other people are saying about the topic that you want to write about.
  • Don’t copy or plagiarize.. that's a big no no ! I’m just saying it so that we get that out of the way. The purpose in seeing what others are saying about what you’re writing about isn’t to copy their thoughts, but to avoid rehashing content that has been mulled over time and time again. If you want someone to listen to what you have to say, knowing what has been said before is important, but it’s even more important to use “your voice” to communicate on that topic in your own way with your own words. The added bonus is that it gives you ideas that you may not have had before on what to include in what you’re about to write about too.
  • I would get 5-6 articles to reference that have material on what you’re going to write about.
  • As you start writing, stick to 4 - 6 lines per paragraph and be sure to refer back to the articles that you’ve picked up that are related to the content you’ll be writing about.
  • Come up with sub headings to further break down your thoughts and material into digestible pieces for anyone that will be reading your content.
  • Also keep in mind that being able to reach 1000 words can be done in less than one and a half pages (1.5pgs) using just about any typefont that is acceptable for blog posts, papers or other document that requires some degree of formal formatting.

In the event that your content is thin, you can use results of polls, surveys or feedback from videos or other comments left on blogs or places where there has been discussion on the topic that you’re writing in reference to. This will allow you to continue to add content in cases where you’ve just run out of things to say. If you find data in graphs or tables, this is yet another strategy that can be used to keep your content flowing and provides you even more opportunities to get to and potentially surpass that 1000 word goal as well.

Writing Tips Learning To Write

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Don’t get me wrong, you’re likely not going to become a person that starts to churn out one thousand word documents overnight just because of the structure and tips that I’ve provided you with. However, that’s not the point of this. The point is to get you moving in that direction because ultimately following this guideline and planning structure gives you a higher chance at success. Writing long form does indeed take more time but that’s the kind of content that provides greater insight as opposed to other literature that you come across that doesn’t have the same kind of content like substance.

Your focus on the “number” won’t be nearly as helpful as focusing on the “how” to get there. Now that you have a plan, the next critical step in this process is to start employing the plan and moving from your comfort zone that is writing just a few words, to writing a lot more. Ironically enough, this post is about how to write 1000 words and you’ve just read that many words in this post. Reading this didn’t take long and writing 1000 words didn’t take long either.

Follow the structure and this plan and you will enjoy the satisfaction that comes with developing a new skill.

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#candidwriter #blog #writing