We often forget that writing is a form of art. It requires skill mastery and creativity, which attracts readers to an author. But unfortunately, a lot of us have lost our artistic and literary means because of instant messaging. We have become prone to improper grammar and spelling.
For example, the use of “cuz” instead of “because”, and “bouta” in replacement of “about to.”
Although there’s nothing wrong with using timesaving vocabulary terms, it’s still apparent to improve your writing skills to make a professional impression.
Good writing skills enable you to communicate clearly—expressing your thoughts and ideas in such a way that it captures people’s imaginations and promotes your credibility in the corporate world—landing you more income opportunities.
To secure your success and legacy, you don’t need to be a writer to benefit from having the basic knowledge and skills in writing, especially in today’s competitive international job market.
For more details, here are five basic ways to improve your basic writing skills.
Build strong foundations
Practice makes improvements no matter how well your writing skills are.
It’s essential to have daily writing exercises to build a strong writing foundation. You can write a paragraph a day or write as much as you want to refine your flow of thought, grammar, punctuation, and proper writing structure.
Word choice matters. Remember to write using simple terms so readers can understand your message clearly. Having a library of vocabulary words in your head allows you to write an exact scenario or mood to focus the readers on visualizing your idea.
The use of lengthy sentences may vary depending on who your readers are. So, it’s essential to know when to use appropriate sentence length. For instance, if you’re writing for a thesis, it’s okay to use long sentences to explain your theory.
Keep sentences short if you’re writing a simple blog article like maintaining your vehicle—because most of your readers aren’t knowledgeable on technical explanations.
These are just a few examples of proper techniques to boost your writing skills.
Improve understanding of text types
Besides grammar, punctuation, and spelling, you need to understand that writing has different types with varying purposes. But it’s helpful to categorize them in two ways: factual and literary text.
Factual text informs, instructs, or persuades readers using facts and valuable information.
- Discussion and argument. Discussion and argument is a type of text that explores a point of view about a topic. It introduces background information, a detailed analysis of different arguments with supporting evidence, and a conclusion that sums up the argument.
- Explanatory text. Explanatory text is simple. It gives a straightforward statement that retells the whys and hows of an issue. It starts with a broad introduction and then a detailed explanation in the body of a writing piece. What you’re reading right now is an excellent example of explanatory text.
- Instructional text. Although instructional text may seem similar to explanatory text, it differs in giving you specific steps on how to accomplish something. Instead, it typically describes the process and communicates rules to follow. In this case, a recipe illustrates an instructional text.
- Persuasive text. Persuasive text convinces the readers about the benefits of a specific object or view based on facts but uses rhetorical devices which address a call-for-action. The most common form of a persuasive text is advertisements.
Literary text prompts emotions to entertain and enlighten readers through uniquely creative language structure.
- Poetry. Poetry aims to entertain and inform readers using rhythm, rhyme, and other literary devices. In addition, it uses imagery which allows the readers to use their imaginations as they read.
- Drama. Drama is purely to delight the readers. It’s identical to narrative text, but the only difference is that it contains dramatic scenes and acts for performance arts, for example, Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller.
- Narrative. A narrative tells a story that includes a setting, character, and a plot in the form of screenplays, novels, myths, and legends. The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe is one of the most famous narrative writings that educators still use for their students today.
So, whatever genre of writing you’re into, it’s essential to know the intention of your text. For example, are you trying to write a biography of a celebrity? Do you want to captivate your readers through a rhythmical composition? Or are you trying to sway people to buy a product or service?
There’s no shame when you write something, and it does not sound appealing the first time you read it. Writing mistakes are unavoidable even for most abid writers. But what sets accomplished authors from struggling writers is their ability to revise their pieces.
The ability to edit is one of the most basic writing skills that many writers neglect to nourish because they rarely feel like it’s giving them any benefits. However, constant revisions offer you an opportunity to become a credible writer with reliable writing skills.
Writers frequently overlook errors. But there are online tools like Grammarly that’ll help you correct your punctuations and give you suggestions for proper sentence structures.
See feedback as an opportunity
There are many ways to level up your creative writing skills, and asking for feedback is one of the factors in becoming an excellent writer. Think of it as an opportunity to improve your writing skills. It helps you focus your attention on minor critical errors you might miss out on from your sentences, and it primarily enables you to refine your writing style.
But you might ask where I can get feedback to improve my basic writing skills?
Since it’s often difficult to assess what you write, it’s better to have someone—a mentor, supervisor, or a client—help you identify your strengths and weaknesses as a writer. Be sure to keep your mind open to constructive criticism.
Read a lot
Reading is part of your basic writing skills. So, in a way, you invest in your ability to write good content through reading.
A good writer is an active reader—you take notes and write questions and reflections. It allows you to form new thought patterns and opinions. It’ll enable you to expound a short line to something more elaborate, given that you write more ideas and arguments based on your perspective.
No idea is original. Writers take bits of information from a piece and expand it into something unique.
Aside from taking inspiration from a text, reading lets you learn where to place punctuations in your sentences properly and helps you scale up your vocabulary. You can write down or highlight new words and research them later. Focus on turns of phrases (an expression that stands out in writing or speech) and try to apply it when you write.
Here’s a challenge. Incorporate your daily writing exercises with your daily reading challenge. Write a summary or a reflection on a piece you’re reading. And be sure to include everything you’ve learned from this article.
To sum it up, writing is an art form that requires a lot of practice and reading to develop your basic writing skills. It’s crucial to build a strong writing foundation through daily writing exercises if you want to get paid as a writer. When you don’t consistently practice a craft, you’ll eventually lose your writing skills.
It’s essential to know the purpose of your piece, whether you’re writing to inform your audience or entertain them. Be sure to check your write-up repeatedly for typographical errors and passive sentences.
One of the best ways to assess your writing skills is by asking someone for their opinion. Be sure not to take it personally. But if you want to transform your basic writing skills, our writing courses can offer a deeper dive into writing.