We ALL write something daily – emails, social media posts, blog posts, or essays.
Your writing can impact many things, including conversions, communication, and storytelling skills. So it’s worth improving your writing skills no matter your industry.
In this FREE guide, you’ll learn the following;
- Some fun and easy tips to improve your English writing skills
- Best writers to follow
- FREE helpful resources on writing and much more
Let’s get started without much ado.
Quick note: We’ve been creating content for the web for over ten years. The tips you’re going to find are from our experiences.
Table of Contents
- 10 Ways to Improve Your Writing Skills [From Our 10-Year Experience]
- Resources for Improving Writing Skills
- Final thoughts on improving your writing
10 Ways to Improve Your Writing Skills [From Our 10-Year Experience]
1. Get the Basics Right
Want to improve your English writing skills QUICKLY? Then, get the writing basics right.
Grammar and spelling are the two most important things to improve your writing.
Using the RIGHT words while writing (be it essays, blog posts, or stories) is super important.
What’s the best way to improve your grammar?
Reading as much as possible is the best way to improve your grammar. By reading more, you’ll discover NEW words you can use within your copy.
When it comes to writing, English has 3 points of view.
Each of those can be either singular or plural. The 3 points of view are;
- Singular or plural first-person (examples are, “I, me, myself” OR “we, us, ourselves”)
- Singular or plural second-person (examples are, You should take a break” OR “You should ALL take a break.”)
- Singular or plural third-person (examples are, “He, She, It” OR “They”)
Once you learn and analyze the points of view, your writing gets A LOT better.
What’s the best way to improve your spelling?
If you’re just starting, we HIGHLY recommend “Grammarly” writing tool. It also offers a free browser extension to check your spelling and save you from grammar and punctuation mistakes.
Here’s how it works;
- Open Grammarly and add your text or type anything
- Grammarly will underline if there are any spelling mistakes in your copy
- You can click on the suggestions to fix those issues
Here’s a simple example;
You can find more details on our Grammarly review to learn valuable tips on using the tool.
2. Write, Write, Write!
Practice makes you perfect.
Just like any other thing, writing is also a skill. With practice and time, you’ll get better.
Here’s the ONE thing to remember: your 100th draft (or article) will be MUCH better than the first.
It’s a brilliant idea to write something daily. That’s the best way to hone your writing skills, especially if you’re new to writing.
Here are a few practical tips for developing the habit of writing daily.
Use tools: You can use tools like “750 Words” if you’re serious about writing regularly. It’s free to use.
The best part? Whatever you write using this tool is permanently private, so you don’t have to worry about data privacy.
Whether you want to write a journal, a small paragraph, or a story – you can use 750 Words to develop the habit of writing.
Write on Quora: Quora is the #1 platform where people ask questions. You can also start answering any question on almost any topic. You can write one answer every day on your favorite topic. Not only does it help with writing skills, but you can also connect with like-minded people.
Use a distraction-free tool: You can use many distraction-free tools to write. One of the major reasons most people struggle with online writing is distractions.
Focusing on writing is hard when you often get emails, social media notifications, etc. Here’s where distraction-free tools come into play.
A few such tools are;
- Calmly Writer
3. Avoid jargon while writing
Avoid jargon (unique words or strange abbreviations), especially while writing content for the web.
Instead, use simple words and phrases.
Jargon can be helpful within a few industries. For example, you can’t write search engine optimization every time (when you can simply use the word “SEO”).
But for most industries, using plain and simple language while writing is better so your audience can easily understand your words.
Here are some examples of how to avoid jargon:
- Instead of writing, “The UX (user experience) needs to be enhanced,” you can write, “The website needs to be easier to use.”
- Instead of writing, “The website needs to be reconfigured,” write, “The website needs to be fixed.”
Are you getting it? Avoiding jargon can make your content much easier for anyone to understand. Here are a few simple tips to avoid jargon while writing.
Know your audience: This is the most important thing to write effectively. Who are you writing for? What exactly they’re searching for? If you’re writing for a general audience, avoid using jargon at ALL costs.
Use plain language: Write in simple, everyday language that even a fifth-grade student can understand. Don’t use fancy words, complex sentences, or long words.
Explain technical terms: If you MUST use a technical term in your copy, explain what it means (in simple terms). You can define that term or give a real-life example so your audience can easily understand what you’re trying to say.
Above all, use Thesaurus.com (the largest platform for synonyms) if you are NOT sure of the meaning of a word. Search those complex terms or words in a thesaurus to find a more common synonym.
4. Get feedback
One of the practical ways to improve your writing is to get feedback from other writers.
But… most beginners struggle to get feedback about their writing.
Don’t worry, we’ll show you a few ways to get constructive criticism on your writing.
How to get feedback on your writing?
- Ask your friends or colleagues who’re good at English.
- Hire an editor (you can find plenty of editors for cheap on platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, etc)
- Join writing groups on social media sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, etc
Here are a few helpful websites (or platforms) where you can get FREE writing feedback.
- CritiqueCircle.com (one of the best platforms on how to make your writing better and getting feedback)
- ABCTales.com (they also have a forum for writers)
- Redditt r/Writing (you can find helpful discussions about the writing craft)
5. Learn from great writers
Here’s a less-known tip to improve writing: learn and follow copywriters.
Pay attention to the authors you enjoy reading, and try to identify the ONE thing you admire in their writing.
Here are a few things you can analyze;
- Use of language
- Sentence structure
- The writing tone and more
Here’s a handpicked list of some of the best copywriters to learn from;
- Hemingway: He is known for his simple, direct writing style. If you like to keep your writing simple, you should definitely follow his work.
- Claude Hopkins: He was one of the world’s greatest copywriters who created world-class advertising campaigns. If you want to learn how to write content that sells, you should check out his books.
- Drayton Bird: He’s a well-known writer and public speaker. He published several best-selling books, including “How to Write Sales Letters That Sell.” His books are a must-read if you want to learn how to create a persuasive copy.
6. Editing is the KEY
Most beginners ignore it, but “editing” is what separates a GREAT copy from average content.
Once you have finished writing something, take time to revise and edit it.
Proofreading your first draft should be the most crucial step while editing.
Proofreading twice, if not thrice. Read your copy out loud. Ask your friends for feedback. Use tools like Grammarly to fix your writing mistakes.
Here are a few practical tips you can use to make your copy error-free.
Cut unwanted words: Great writing is often simple, clear, and direct. If it takes just 50 words to convey a message, don’t write 100 words.
Cut useless words ruthlessly. Great writing is all about using “strong words,” not using “filler words.” If a sentence or paragraph doesn’t add value to the readers, remove it.
Cut long paragraphs: Most people prefer short sentences. If you want to make your content easier to read, don’t use long paragraphs. Keep your paragraphs under 4 to 5 sentences as a rule of thumb.
Edit line-by-line: This is a simple yet effective editing tip for beginner writers. Once you’re done with the writing part, do a line-by-line edit. Go through each and every sentence you’ve written to check the basics of spelling, grammar, etc.
7. Use active instead of passive voice
Want to make your copy compelling? Keep your writing tone “active.”
Use active voice instead of passive voice.
Let us show you the differences between both these voices.
Here are some examples of active voice:
- The dog chased the ball
- The construction workers built the house
- The company paid the bill
- The chef cooked the dinner
As you can see, the above sentences are DIRECT and engaging.
Here are some examples of passive voice:
- The ball was chased by the dog
- The house was built by the construction worker
- The bill was paid by the company
- The dinner was cooked by the chef
As you can see, the above sentences are NOT direct and less engaging.
That’s why you should use “active voice” while writing. It makes your writing more direct and compelling.
8. Writing for the web is different
Are you mainly writing for the web, such as blog posts, case studies, short essays, and reviews? Then, you should learn how to write for the online readers.
Writing for an online audience is different than traditional (offline) writing.
Why? People who’re reading online have less attention spans.
If they don’t find your copy interesting, they’ll abandon your site and go elsewhere.
That’s why you must learn how to write for an online audience. Here are a few practical ways to write compelling copy for online readers.
Use short sentences: Here’s a less-known fact: short sentences are more powerful than long sentences. Academic or offline writing may need long sentences, but web writing is totally different.
People love to read short sentences. They’re easier to read and consume. If you learn to write short sentences, your writing improves. It’s as simple as that.
Short is better: Short paragraphs are easier to digest. Even if you’re writing about a complex topic, you can convey better with short paragraphs. Also, they look appealing on the web pages.
Use lots of bullet points: List posts often get more engagement online because online readers love them. List posts often contain lots of bullet points. Try to use bullet points no matter what type of content you’re creating (be it list posts, how-to’s, or guides).
Lastly, online readers are more likely to scan your content than read it word-for-word. So formatting your content in such a way can help you get the best results.
9. Write like you talk
It is called informal or conversational writing when you write like you talk.
Remember, your writing style should reflect your personality. We are all different.
Using a natural, conversational tone, you can develop a unique writing style. That’s why writing as you talk is the best way to share your thoughts and improve your writing.
Also, written language is MOSTLY complex.
If you want people to read and understand what you write, you should definitely write as you talk.
Here are some tips for writing as you talk.
Use contractions: Contractions are words that are made by two or more other words in a shortened form. Contractions make your writing sound more conversational.
For example, instead of “I am,” you could write “I’m.”
A few more examples are Can’t (instead of can not), don’t (instead of do not), and we’re (instead of we are).
Use personal pronouns: Personal pronouns are the words like “I,” “you,” and “we”. These personal pronouns create a sense of connection with your reader or the person they’re addressing (while writing).
Imagine a friend: While writing copy, imagine someone (or a friend) is sitting in front of you. Write as if you’re going to explain to him about the topic you will cover. Don’t let a sentence through unless it’s how you would say it to a friend.
10. Think before you start writing
The biggest problem most writers face is thinking about what to write and how to begin.
It’s better to think before you sit in front of your computer.
Think about all the ideas (or concepts) you want to cover in your copy. Create a flow.
Create an outline in your mind. Think about all the topics or sections you want to cover within your copy.
Once the thinking is done, start by outlining your topic.
If you’re writing online, use a simple tool like Google Docs and outline everything by using subheadings like H2, H3, etc.
Then, you can start filling up those subheadings. It’s much easier to write when you have an outline for your copy.
Make sure to give importance to the beginning and end of your copy. Why? Those are the two most important parts of your text that your readers will remember the most.
Resources for Improving Writing Skills
Whether you’re new to writing or a non-native English speaker, you need access to specific resources.
Here’s a handpicked list of the best books, blogs, and tools to help you hone your English writing skills. These resources are helpful for all kinds of writers, including beginners and prolific writers.
Here are some of the best books on how to make your writing better;
- “On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft” by Stephen King. This book describes his writing experiences and gives practical advice for aspiring writers.
- “Dreyer’s English” by Benjamin Dreyer. This book is a must-read if you want to improve your clarity and writing style.
- “Bird by Bird” by Anne Lamott. This book is an excellent resource if you need help finding your writing voice and passion.
Here are some of the best copywriting blogs to read in 2023;
- Copyhackers.com: If you’re looking for copywriting tips for beginners to advanced, Copyhackers is an excellent resource. They’ve hundreds of free guides on copywriting and content marketing strategies.
- Copyblogger.com: This is one of the oldest blogs on copywriting, which has been helping writers since 2006. If you want to learn all the skills you need to make six figures as a freelance writer, Copyblogger is a must-read.
- BenSettle.com: If you’re looking for a free resource on creating captivating copy, including emails, blog posts, etc – check out Ben Settle’s blog. On his blog, you’ll find 3000+ pages of advanced email, copywriting, and marketing tips.
Looking for the best YouTube channels for writing? Check out the following channels.
- Grammar Girl: This is run by Mignon Fogarty, a New York Times bestselling author who shares tips about English, grammar, and writing.
- Abbie Emmons: If you’re stuck in writing or lack motivation, check out this channel. It is run by Abbie Emmons, who teaches you the power and psychology of storytelling.
- Ellen Brock: This YouTube channel is especially useful to those who’re looking for traditional writing advice such as storytelling, novel writing, etc. It is run by Ellen Brock, a novel editor with ten years of experience.
Here are THREE helpful tools that can help you with better writing.
1. Grammarly: It is the best tool to fix your copy’s grammar and spelling mistakes. It has a free version which is enough for beginners. But if you’re planning to write more, go with their premium version, which is worth every penny.
2. Hemingway Editor: This is a must-use writing app for you if you want to make your writing simple and precise. It can help you fix complex sentences and common errors by offering a readability score. It is free to use and offers a desktop app version as well.
3. Readability Test from WebFX: Are you looking for an easy way to test the readability of your copy? Then, this is an excellent option for you. You can enter the web page URL or text to find the readability score.
Here are some questions most people ask about “how to write better” and tips for writing.
Here are some of the major benefits of writing;
– Improves your creativity
– Improves communication skills
– Helps you generate income online, as there’s a constant demand for quality writers
Practice makes you perfect. Try to write something daily, even if it is just a hundred words. Also, reading from various copywriters helps you learn different writing styles and techniques.
The basic writing skills include spelling, capitalization, punctuation, proofreading, and sentence structure.
Here are some of the best tools that can help you with writing;
– ZenWriter (for distraction-free writing)
– Evernote (for taking notes and ideas)
– Grammarly (for grammar correction and proofreading)
Either you can ask your friends or colleagues to read your copy. Or you can use tools like Grammarly to see the readability score, fix grammar issues, etc. You can also hire an editor from sites like Upwork to fix and improve your copy.
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Final thoughts on improving your writing
There are a ton of different writing tips available on the web. But we’ve only listed ONLY those tips we’ve tried and tested for the last ten years.
Even if you’re a non-native English speaker, you can use these tips to improve your writing skills.
Did you find this guide helpful? Have any questions? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.