10 secrets of professional writers

The harder people try to write well, the worse their writing usually becomes. Here are some simple tips to follow.

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We all know good writing when we see it, and we cringe when we see terrible writing.

Here are 10 secrets of professional writers to help improve your writing.

1. Avoid clichés

You know that, don’t you? Yet clichés are more invasive then people imagine. A cliché is any idea or expression that has lost its force through overuse, to the point where it becomes meaningless and drab.

Here are some examples that I have found in recent blogs:

The problem with—and the attraction to—clichés is that they seem to say exactly what we want to say, so it is tempting to hang on to these banal expressions.

Yet, they will deaden your prose, make readers mentally sign off, and expose you as an amateur—every time.

So, avoid overused sayings (yes, I know, like the plague).

2. Write the way you speak

Use a conversational tone. Really. And you don’t have to use complete sentences, either.

Think of it this way; if you wouldn’t say it a casual conversation, think twice before you write it. A blog is a friendly chat that will inform and entertain your audience. It is not a lecture, an academic thesis, or the opportunity to harangue your readers from your soapbox.

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