10 Useful Writing Tips For Better Results

1. Short sentences, you will write

You are not Proust! So don’t write more than one or two lines per sentence. If you are hesitating between several turns of phrase that convey the same information, simply count the words and always choose the one that contains the least.

By shortening your sentences, your texts will immediately be more rhythmic. As soon as you feel that you are getting yourself into a sentence that is too long, there is a problem. Identify the pieces of information that make up your overly long sentence and address them one by one in separate sentences.

Tip: turn semicolons into periods at all.

2. A subject + verb + complement, you will limit yourself

The subject + verb + complement or adjective scheme is the simplest grammatically. It is immediately recognizable and understandable by the reader at a glance.

So avoid complex grammatical turns, subordinates, incises, parentheses within the same sentence, etc. Avoid removing the subject from the verb. No need to multiply adverbs or adjectives.

Tip : turn subordinates into independent sentences as soon as possible.

 

3. One idea per sentence, you will build

One idea per sentence, one subject per article! Do not try to say everything at once in a single text on the same topic, at the risk of drowning your reader. And to have no more ideas for articles later.

Above all, don’t start writing without taking the time to think about your plan. Prioritize your ideas and start with the most important ones. Answer your readers’ questions in the order in which they will logically ask them. This is called writing an inverted pyramid text.

“What is conceived well is clearly stated. And the words to say it come easily. »Nicolas Boileau, The Poetic Art, 1674.

Tip: if your text is too long, divide it into several articles grouped into a folder on your site and linked together by links.

4. Your vocabulary, you will simplify

You are not a writer, you are a writer. You do not write to please yourself but to make yourself understood. Don’t try to wow your readers with search terms or literary styling effects. Focus on simple words, familiar to everyone, those that readers commonly use, and that Internet users frequently search for in Google.

Simplifying your vocabulary doesn’t mean repeating yourself. When you write a text for the Web, it is in your interest to vary your turns of phrase, to say the same thing several times with different words. You will help Google better understand the meaning of your text and you will answer more different queries.

Tip: only use words that you are sure to spell.

5. The jargon, you will translate

It is not a question of completely avoiding technical jargon or the specific words of activity, but of making sure to “translate” them into everyday French at the first occurrence. Remember in particular to explain all acronyms, abbreviations, and words in English. Again, this is not to take your readers for idiots, but to contextualize your information to respond to different levels of knowledge of the subject. Paraphrase Tool will help you sometimes to quickly comprehend the text and get new instances in the writing.

Not only will your readers say thank you, but search engines will spot your page better because you will broaden your semantic field. Example: RSA in itself does not include any keyword and means both “Active Solidarity Income” and “Air Sports Network”.

Tip: imagine that “you write for your grandmother”, as they say in the school of journalism.

6. Negations, you will avoid

It is forbidden to forbid! I agree, it is not always easy (as you can see in this article which is intended to be educational…), but negative expressions should be avoided as much as possible. A negation is more difficult to understand than a statement.

Favor positive phrases, more involving and more direct for the reader. Avoid double negations that you often have to read twice before understanding their meaning. Example: don’t do the opposite of what I’m saying …

Tip: systematically replace the famous “do not hesitate to call us” by “call us”!

7. The passive, you will avoid

Better to write “the cat eats the mouse” than “the mouse is eaten by the cat”. Not only does the passive form have more words to read than the active form (7 words against 5), but it is also more complex to analyze.

So reverse the passive sentences by transforming the complement of the agent into the subject. Example: “This product is used by cosmonauts”> “Cosmonauts use this product”.

Tip: focus on action verbs like create, make, decide, order, buy, etc.

 

8. Adjectives and adverbs, you will avoid

“Journalists (…) who want to use an adjective will come and see me in my office. Those who use an adverb will be kicked out, ”wrote Georges Clemenceau in a circular when he was editor-in-chief of L’Aurore.

The years have passed, the media have changed, but the advice endures! Adjectives, especially superlatives, ring false if they are too numerous or systematic. If you write that your company is providing “real” services, does that mean that it is also providing “false” ones?

Tip : Start by removing all “true”, “true” and “really” unnecessary from your texts.

 

9. The subjunctive, you will avoid

Avoid the subjunctive: limit yourself to the indicative. Also, avoid times that you learn at school like the simple past, the more-than-perfect, the past, etc. Try to stick to the present tense, past tense, imperfect, future, and imperative.

And if you have the slightest doubt, head to a conjugation website or the good old Bescherelle.

Tip: abuse the infinitive! Internet users more frequently use the infinitive in Google (“buy flowers for Mother’s Day”) than imperative phrases (“buy me flowers to give them to your mother”).

 

10. Aloud, you will read yourself again

Proofread your text carefully before publishing it. Look for overly long sentences, overly complex turns, etc. Check that you have applied all of the above rules.

Read yourself aloud to spot sentences that are difficult to read, those that lack rhythm, those that you stumble on or for which you are short of breath. Gustave Flaubert called this test: pass his text to the “couloir”: you will see, it is very effective!

 

Tip: have a colleague or loved one proofread you. Or read it again later to get a fresh perspective. Or print the text you have written on a screen on paper: the change of medium will help you to detach yourself from your writing. Again using paraphrasing tool will help writers to check for plagiarism they have in their writing which is one of the most important tips to follow.

Enjoyed this advice article? Here is more on this blog to help you write better on the Internet: And you, what writing tips would you like to share?