What Do Successful Writers Do that Unsuccessful Writers Don’t?

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We are advocates of thinking about your ultimate goal. Good writing is so much more than making sure your commas are in the right place.

Every piece of writing you create has a goal in mind. Are you trying to get a job? Are you trying to write a piece of content to market your latest product? Do you want to write a blog post that gets real, genuine interaction from your readers?

As you can see, every piece of writing is driven with an overall goal in mind.

But so many good writers wonder why their writing does not get the job done. They wonder why they continue to toil for little gain.

We get asked this question regularly, and so we have decided to list all the major reasons why, in our opinion, successful writers are different from everyone else.

What is the Difference Between Success and Failure? 

Every single piece of content has a message. And that message is fully clarified. There is no ambiguity with a successful piece of writing. You know what the writer is trying to say and why he or she is saying it.

Don’t ramble, and make it obvious in the first few lines what you want to say and why you want to say it. Do not lead people on to ‘uncover the mystery’. This is not a Sherlock Holmes story.

Successful writers also serve their audiences. Regardless of what you are writing about, the person who reads that writing wants something.

One example that we use to explain this is a letter to a company about a faulty product. You bought a product and now you want to write an email to them about it.

The last thing you want to do is write a one-page email filled with insults and general rage. You want the situation resolved. And your audience (the company) wants to know how to resolve it.

In that email, you start off by telling them why you are writing to them. From there you write it like a story. You explain what happened from the moment you received the product to the moment you discovered something was wrong.

This serves your audience because now they know why you are contacting them and what went wrong. The stage is now set for the company to respond in kind.

Improving Your Writing 

By reading our blog today, you have already taken the first step on the road to becoming a successful writer. The difference between good writers and bad writers is the will to constantly improve.

What a good piece of writing looked like 50 years ago is very different from what a good piece of writing looks today. This is a fluid industry and you must move with the times.

Remember that unless you are connecting with your audience it doesn’t matter how technically good your writing is.

You need to speak to the heart

What do you think is the main difference between a successful writer and an unsuccessful writer?

What Can You Do to Improve Your Written Communication?

Post It Notes

In writing, it’s always the little things that make a difference. Effective communication doesn’t involve altering your whole writing style. There is a plethora of little touches you can add to your writing to make sure that your message gets through.

Before you read on, we recommend that you practice. Communication in writing is always difficult to achieve, and it only comes with experience.

Changing Your Sentence Structure 

The first step to communication is to change the way you write your sentences. One of the biggest mistakes new writers make is they believe communication is about writing down everything about a topic.

That’s tiring, and people are going to gradually drift away as they continue to read. You can counter this by just changing your sentence structure.

Make them shorter. The same goes for your paragraphs; it is easier to consume this way. A 500-word blog post with shorter paragraphs feels shorter to the reader than if those same 500 words were combined into one or two long paragraphs.

Practising shorter sentences will also teach you to how to be clearer and more concise with your words.

It is not just long sentences and paragraphs that hurt novice writers. It’s also the temptation to ramble on about things that don’t add to your message.

Think Content 

Now that you have the structure of your words ready, it’s time to look at the overall message you’re sending. The way you write means nothing if what you are writing has little to no value.

Every piece of writing, regardless of the format or context, should start with the point you are trying to make. This isn’t a novel where the reader must turn the page to find out more. The modern online reader will simply click away.

By stating the point of your writing in the beginning, you’re leaving the reader with a choice. Interested readers will continue while uninterested readers will click away.

This is a good thing.

There is little point in leading readers on just so that they get to the end. You don’t win anything for doing so and you’re leaving those readers short-changed.

But how do you keep readers interested?

Keeping Readers Interested

Once interested readers make it through the beginning, you need to keep them interested. This is the hardest part of effective communication.

You can do a lot simply by adding subtitles, numbered lists, and bullet points. But your writing must tell something of a story whilst maintaining the completeness of your points.

To do this, you have to give your readers a reason to keep going. Ask questions. Use examples. And make them believe the next pertinent point is just around the corner. The introduction should only tell you ‘what’. It should not tell you the ‘how’ or the ‘why’.

That’s the distinction you need to make if you’re going to become an effective communicator.

But it is always a difficult balance to strike. We recommend trying out different types of writing and putting pen to paper regularly. Effective communication only comes with practice.

What do you think is the most essential part of effective written communication?