Writing well is one of the most important skills that you can develop. This is important because it can help you advance in your career or become an honor roll student. It is becoming a lost art. If you become skilled at this craft, it will give an advantage over many people. You do not have to a professional writer to be a skilled writer. You do not have to be J.K. Rowling or Walter Mosley. No matter what your talent level is, you can always improve with hard work. It takes time and effort, but it is worth it to become a better writer. If you use the following 10 tips, you can improve your writing skills:

Write! Write!

If you want to upgrade your writing skills, then you just have to roll up your sleeves and do it. This may be a big fear of yours, but you overcome this by getting started. You do not have to write about a specific subject. Just write about something that is on your mind. It could be about the weather, or something that happened at work or school. Do not be concerned about proper grammar or punctuation. Save that for the revision process. Concentrate on getting your thoughts on paper. In the beginning, you may want to set a goal of writing for 10 minutes each day. After you have done this for awhile, you may expand it to about 20- 30 minutes. Remember that it will take some time to become a better writer. Do not rush yourself. Every day that you write, the process will become easier and you will begin to see progress. You might even want to keep a daily journal to monitor your level of improvement.

Read! Read!

Writing and reading go along hand-in-hand. It is almost impossible to have one without the other. How can you recognize good writing if you do not read? Reading your newspaper or favorite author is a good place to start. While you are reading, you can study their punctuation, spelling, and grammar. These writers are professionals and you can learn the fundamentals of writing from them. Reading can also help you develop your creativity and imagination. This can help you improve your writing skills because people tend to write better when it is something that gets them excited. Another thing you may want to consider is writing a book report on a book by your favorite author. This will allow you to be entertained and improve your writing and reading at the same time. Or, you could set a goal of reading for a set amount of time every day.

Use A Dictionary

Using a dictionary is one of the most effective tools you can use to become a better writer. This will help you learn the meaning of new words and increase your vocabulary. You will also be teaching yourself to properly pronounce them. Over time, you will be able to substitute one word for another. It will also make your writing more interesting because you will not be consistently using the same words. This is especially important if you are an aspiring Novelist or Journalist. You do not want your readers to become bored and put your work down. Even if you learned one word per day, you would know 365 new words in a year! You may even want to keep a small notepad in order to keep track of your expanding vocabulary.

Accept Constructive Criticism

There is no such thing as a perfect writer. Whether you are an amateur or a professional, you can always improve. Thank anyone that takes the time to give you constructive criticism. They are telling what is good and what you need to improve on. For example, this person may like the subject that you are writing about, but may see too many spelling errors. Or maybe you have too many run-on sentences. Have a family member or a trusted friend critique your work. Have the courage to listen to what they have to say, even if you do not like it. It is very difficult to become a better writer if you cannot take criticism. Never take it personally.

Revise Your First Draft

Now is the time to make corrections of your work. Study your writing and give yourself an honest analysis. Look out for any spelling or grammar mistakes that you have made. There are also many spell-checking programs available. Do your research and find the best one for you. This is very important if you have to write an essay or report for school. These mistakes can reduce the quality of your paper and reduce your grade. Make sure that you use proper capitalization and punctuation. Commas and periods can affect the rhythm of your writing and it is important that you use them correctly. Reading your text out loud will help you because it will give you a better sense of what you need to improve on. It will also help you develop your "writer's voice", or style of writing. This will develop naturally over time as you become a more experienced writer. Overwriting is a mistake that is often made by amateur writers. They often use extra words that they do not need. If your sentence is more effective with eight words instead of ten, then use eight. After revising your first draft, you should consider putting it away for a couple of days. This will allow you to clear your mind of your work. When you critique it again, you will be studying it from a fresh perspective. You will be surprised at how much this can help you. Oftentimes, you will find mistakes that you missed previously. If necessary, revise your writing using a second draft.

Go To A Book Signing 

If you can, visit your favorite author at one of their book signings. If you love poetry, attend a poetry reading. Ask them what you can do to become a better writer. Try and find out what techniques they use and how you can apply them to your writing. Ask the author what books they can recommend to you to improve your craft. They often give lectures at Universities and Community Colleges. Sometimes, they are visiting professors and host workshops. These workshops do not cost much money, and the knowledge you gain will be more than worth it.

Listen To Daily Conversations

You can pick up clues about proper writing just by listening to people talk every day. Study the conversation of two people. Are they pronouncing words correctly? Would you use their words? Are their words flowing freely or do they sound congested, or stiff? The best writing is direct, simple, and straightforward. You do not have to use big, fancy words in your writing. In fact, this often turns off people to your writing. Practice simplicity.

Take A Vacation

Taking a vacation can work wonders to help your writing improve. You can get away from your daily distractions and relax. You will have a peace of mind and enjoy the beauty of life. A beautiful destination can trigger your writing juices and gave you new things to write about. You have never been this environment and will probably write longer than you normal. This can fuel your writing for years and give you plenty to write about.

Study Other Cultures

You may be living on a tight money budget and cannot afford a vacation. If this is the case, you can read about other cultures. Visiting your local library or surfing the Internet is a great way to learn about other cultures. Pick a country that interests you and learn about it. Find out about their customs, traditions, and history. If you have a chance encounter with a person from another race, strike up a conversation. Ask them about things that you are curious about. You will learn something and maybe develop a friendship. This will help you develop your writing also and it is free.

Join A Writer's Group

A Writer's Group is a great way to share your work with other writers. It allows you to give and receive feedback. You can spend time with people that share your love of writing. If there is not a group in your area, then you should start one. Your group could also read and critique your favorite books. Every month, you could host a book club and have a conversation about a book. Or maybe you or some of your writer friends could suggest a book for reading. This is also a chance to develop lifetime friendships.

Becoming a better writer is one of the best things that you can do for yourself. It will help you do better in school and advance in your career. If you want to improve your writing skills, you must write for a set time daily. Reading is important because it will help you recognize good writing. Using a dictionary will increase your vocabulary and accepting constructive criticism will reduce your mistakes. Revising your first draft is necessary and will help clean up your errors. Going to a book signing allows you the opportunity to gain knowledge from your favorite author. Listening to daily conversations can give you ideas about what good writing is. Taking a vacation and studying other cultures gives you fresh things to write about. Joining a Writer's Group allows you to give and receive feedback from other writers. If you follow these 10 tips, they will help you become a better writer.






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