Are good writing skills really that important for modern people who can use software to correct the mistakes in their business letters? Should students spend so much time on writing courses and countless exercises? The answer is definitely yes.
Software is not a miraculous solution, because spell checkers can leave some mistakes unnoticed. To ensure that your writing contains no mistakes is especially important now, in the era of the Internet, when employers see your resumes before meeting you and colleagues often get to see your messages instead of talking to you directly. Thus, your writing style is an extremely important part of your image. If you wonder how to improve writing skills, you may want to check the best advice in the sections below.
Good writing skills: destroying the myths
The concept of “good writing skill” is surrounded by numerous myths. Let’s discuss and destroy the most popular of them:
- Myth 1: writing skills are valuable only for professional writers. This is wrong. Good writing skills are important for people of all professions, because correspondence plays an important role in any business relations.
- Myth 2: nobody, except college instructors, cares for good writing skills. This is wrong. People can judge your competence by your writing style.
- Myth 3: good writing means writing without style, punctuation and grammar mistakes. This is only partially correct. Good writing skills mean not only error-free writing, but also the ability to express thoughts clearly and concisely.
- Myth 4: good writing skills are an inborn gift. This is wrong. Every student can master the art of perfect writing by following the rules and working hard.
Good writing skills: main principles
If you want to improve writing skills, follow these main principles:
- Perfect content. The first principle of perfect writing is to convey clear messages. You should remember that your main goal is to say something to somebody. Make certain that you have a clear understanding of what you are going to say in your paper before you start writing it. You may want to conduct a research, gather the necessary materials, review the literature and define your main point and supporting arguments.
- Logical structure. The second principle is to structure the content logically. You should make an outline and consider the traditional structure of all papers (introduction+ main body+ conclusion). Include a thesis statement in the introduction part and several topic sentences in the body paragraphs.
- Tone and word choice. Consider your audience and your goal and choose the most suitable words and tone for them. Respect your readers and try to understand their needs, interests and expectations.
- Grammar and style. Yes, grammar rules can be rather confusing. Still, you should always follow them and consult grammar and style guidelines whenever it is necessary.
- Express ideas instead of trying to impress your readers. Do not use long and difficult words only to show that you know them. Instead, choose the words that express best the core messages of each sentence. Do not use complex constructions to make your writing more sophisticated. Keep in mind that unnecessary constructions only prevent readers from understanding your ideas. By the way, your instructors will always notice if you try to use these dirty tricks.
Good writing skills: best advice
Along with the above discussed principles, the best advice for those who want to improve writing skills is to read more good books, pay attention to the style of outstanding writers and journalists, always proofread papers and work hard on written assignments. Ask your friends to proofread your papers and help them in return. Do not be discouraged if your papers are not perfect today.
Papers will be better tomorrow and even better next week. Rome was not built in a day. Similarly, good writing skills require hard work and a lot of writing practice. You will need patience to make your writing skills good. Still, it is worth doing it, because your writing style is an essential part of your bright future.