How to improve your writing skills and grammar

Vintage office with typewriter

Writing is a skill of great value. For a writer, nothing can motivate him more than a blank page. The possibilities of the stories that can be etched on the white pages are endless. But, sadly, for many, the most challenging part of writing is how to start writing, and it does not get more accessible from there.

A non-writer will have a hard time expressing himself and will not find the right words to convey emotions. To continually practice writing is the only remedy in learning how to write. The more you write, the more skillful you will be at expressing yourself.

The words that once use to obstruct your flow of thoughts, those that once you could not remember at all, will start flooding out, making it possible for you to express yourself clearly. Not only on paper but also in speeches.

The need to write

Writing stimulates your brain, the more you write, the more words and expressions will come more natural to you. It is not an isolated action and absolutely can be developed. The more you practice writing, your communication and interaction with others will also get better.

It escalates your critical thinking, and this, in turn, will help you in making rational decisions, will calibrate your mental power in solving problems, and would develop in you the skill of inquiry. Writing develops a critical mind. Constant writing practices will build your integration skills and your ability to process content and expression.

Writing does not only teach you but also helps you the value of emotions. One of the essential purposes of writing is to convey an emotion. This emotion may spring from the tragic end of a nonfiction story or the compelling product description that makes you desire an object.

In both cases, writing is used as a conveyor of emotion. Good writing can make us cry and laugh; we can hold our rapt attention or can make us want to own a product. Therefore, it is imperative to consider the reader’s feelings and interests when plotting content.

Writing is one of the best ways that express who you are as a person. The daily journal that you wrote or the poem that you penned at the end of note has much to say about you. Writing makes your thoughts visible and helps you to give a glimpse of yourself.

By reading your old write-ups, you will get a sense of how much you have traversed and how much you have matured with time.

Writing liberates you. This is a great medium to express your joy, grief, troubles, and anguish. If you have had a bad day, it is best to write about it. This will make you feel more relaxed and happier.

Improve writing style

The importance of writing

As a Student: Writing is a powerful medium for you to express and communicate your thoughts. For any exam or class test, writing skills are very crucial. Right well-articulated answers not only bring excellent marks, but they also develop the power to bring-out coherent and critical ideas about various issues.

Students who can write clearly will be able to express better in class and raise proper questions that will further the knowledge process of a class. Writing assignments and making review notes are effective ways to develop a firm knowledge foundation.

Students who have a habit of taking down notes, in summary, will gain better recall power, and the reviews will aid easily before exams. Moreover, writing skills boost creativity in students and help them to broaden their minds and vocabulary.

As a Professional: For business purposes writing official letters and expressing your business need is crucial. An intricate fumbling letter to a new client will make no sense until and unless you convey information.

Clear and effective communication is a must for an enterprise, and continual practice develops the habit of writing and will address the problem. Writing will help your expression and hone your business speeches. It will let you effectively communicate with your colleagues and process the right command or direction to your employees.

Types of writing style:

Learning several writing styles will help you to jump a good start in developing your writing skills.

Study the four main types of writing: expository, descriptive, persuasive, and narrative. These writing styles have a particular purpose unique from each other. A single content may include more than one writing style.

Expository

Expository writing is one of the most common types of writing and which means “to expose.” It is long on facts and short in storytelling. When a writer uses an expository style, all he is trying to do is explain a concept, sharing information from himself to a bigger audience.

This style of writing does not include the author’s opinions but concentrates on accepted facts about a topic, including figures or other evidence.

Examples of Expository Writing:

  • Newspaper Articles
  • Textbooks
  • How-to articles
  • Cooking Recipes
  • Business, Technical, Scientific writing

Descriptive

Descriptive writing is usually found in fiction, though it can make an appearance in nonfiction as well (for example, memoirs, first-hand accounts of events, or travel guides). When a writer uses a descriptive style, he is painting a picture in words of a person, event, place, or thing for their readers.

The writer might employ metaphor or other literary tools to describe his impressions via their five senses (what they hear, see, smell, taste, or touch). But the writer is not trying to convince the readers of anything or explain the scene – merely describe things as they are.

Examples of Expository Writing:

  • Journal/Diary Writing
  • Descriptions of Nature
  • Fictional Novels or Play
  • Poetry

Persuasive

Persuasive writing is the main style of writing often used in academic papers. When a writer uses an energetic style, he is convincing the readers of a position or belief. Persuasive writing comprises the writer’s opinions and biases, as well as justifications and reasons, which were given by the writer as evidence of the precision of their position.

Any “argumentative” paper you write in school should be in the persuasive style of writing.

Examples of Persuasive Writing:

  • Letter of Intent
  • Cover Letters
  • Reviews of Items
  • Letter of Complaints
  • Advertisements
  • Letter of Recommendations

Narrative

The narrative writing style is used in almost every longer piece of writing, whether fiction or nonfiction.

When a writer writes in a narrative style, he is not just trying to give information. Rather, he is trying to construct and communicate a story, complete with characters, conflict, and settings.

Examples of Narrative Writing:

  • Novel/Novellas
  • Oral Histories
  • Poetry (especially Epic Sagas or Poems)
  • Short Stories
  • Tales

writing tools illustration

Improving your writing style

Good content is a result of constant practice, training, and persistence. Do not be discouraged from receiving criticism of your work as writing is developed through time. Look at it from the other perspective: if you persist, if you practice and work hard, your writing will become better with every effort you make.

Improving your writing style will help you to convey information more clearly and communicate with your readers better. There are tips and hints presented here to improve the writing style.

There are two basic ways to improve your writing skills; they are reading and writing.

Reading

Spending enough time to read other writers’ work will help you to observe the different writing styles and their features. Pay close attention to sentence structure, word choice, and the flow of the writing. As you continue reading, you will be able to differentiate between good writing and bad writing.

Then you can take note of the features of these two kinds of writing and use/avoid them in your work.

Writing

Just reading other people’s work alone will not help you improve your writing. You won’t be able to develop and master your writing style unless you keep working on it.

How to improve writing style:

Learn right Grammar

Your reading will flow smoothly if you follow the correct grammar structures in English.

If you just started writing or if you haven’t written anything in a long time, be sure to look at some grammar structures. Learning English Grammar and vocabulary are widely available online.

Grammar under magnifying glass

Choose Words Carefully

There is a vast number of similar words in the English language. But each of these words may have different implications. Choosing the word that is most appropriate to your context is very important as it helps you plot the outline as you desired it to be.

It will also help you to communicate the exact feeling or situation.

Refrain from using overused words such as good, bad, and ugly. Be more precise. For example, you can use words like sunlit, helpful, gentle, attractive, innocent, etc. instead of good, depending on the context.

Use Straightforward Language

The main goal of writing should be to make your text as clear and concise as possible. Using profound and literary language will surely display your language knowledge, but what’s the point of using elevated expression if your readers can’t understand what you are saying?

Using simple and straightforward language in writing is always the right thing to do.

Avoid Long Sentences

Avoid the use of long sentences to make your text more straightforward and reader-friendly. It is wise to reconstruct the long sentence in two or more short sentences. Although this does not mean that you should only use short sentences in a text.

Do a combination of short and long sentences. Always reread the lengthy sentence to be sure that the meaning is clear.

Avoid Repetition

Repetition is another usual stylistic mistake made by many writers. Although sometimes, repetition of a word or an idea might be unintentional.

For example, “a trainee who lacks experience” is a redundant phrase because trainee already means that he or she doesn’t have experience.

Use of appropriate Punctuations

Correct usage of punctuation is vital in writing. Errors in using punctuation can sometimes change the idea of a whole sentence or phrase. These errors can also make reading wearisome.

Pay Attention to Structure

Always consider following a structure. It is advisable to start your work with a brief introduction, but if you are still undecided about what to write in your introduction, you can write it after you have completed the whole writing.

Use paragraphs to break your facts into logically self-contained units. Even the most professional writers cannot write a complete text in one attempt.

Edit and Proofread

Since writing is an intricate work of words and grammar, always edit and proofread your text. Don’t hesitate to change what you have already written. Sometimes better ideas come out the second time.

Conclusion

Style refers to the way we express ourselves in writing. While there is no one standard style that every writer must follow, there are essential elements in an effective writing style that must be considered.

One is readability, which is the use of words, phrases, sentences, and paragraphs in such a way as to communicate facts and ideas. The other is elegance, which is the use of appropriate and exciting words, phrases, sentences, and paragraphs to produce graceful, unobtrusive prose that will keep a reader’s attention and interest.

The right style communicates information effectively. It affects the reader along quickly from word to word, sentence to sentence, paragraph to paragraph, and one page of the paper to the next. This will encourage the readers to read more of your work.

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10 Comments

  1. Hi Marian,

    Wonderful article! Like everything else, writing is practice. I do believe that having a structure is vital – no matter which writing style. Once you get the hang of writing, it’s truly a space where you can express your creativity and/or individuality.

    For myself, I proofread my posts aloud because it allows me to hear if it sounds right or can sound better as a whole.

    Great sharing!

    Cheers.
    SAM

  2. I like your message here. Write without fear. Edit without mercy. That’s my style really. I tend to say everything while writing and then come back to it once to topic settles down and edit without mercy. Thanks for sharing this highly informative post. I’ve learned a lot about writing through sites like yours. Keep up the good work.

  3. Hello. Great Article, fantastic read. You have pointed out so many interesting ideas people can use in their writing. Practice makes perfect, you can’t expect to master any skill if it is not practiced. Thank you

  4. What a fabulous article – there’s still hope for me yet. Writing has never been my forte, and my first article took forever to write, with plenty of amendments, but as you say, even professionals don’t succeed on the first attempt.

    You have highlighted some very good points, of which I shall certainly embrace when composing my next article. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Thank you so much for this highly informative article, Marian! I love to write, but I definitely developed my love for writing and personal expression through all of my English classes in school-I am a stickler for proper grammar and correct punctuation. Haha Writing is definitely a skill that one must practice and can become better at doing over time, but structure is key-free-for-all writing will only take you so far. Haha I have saved your article and will share it with my friends and family. God bless you!

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