Let’s be honest - no one is born a great writer. Most of us, of course, dreamt of becoming successful authors in our childhood. However, only as grown-ups do we find out that even basic writing skills require continuous practice.
So, if you’re struggling as a writer, and every writing task at college or high school causes a mental and emotional breakdown, this guide is for you. Here, you’ll learn the basics and familiarize yourself with the ways to improve writing skills for students.
Let’s dive in!
What Are Good Writing Skills?
When we think about writing, the primary idea that gets in our heads is crafting a text. However, it’s way more than that.
If you want to learn writing skills, you also need to master the following:
- Research - the ability to find appropriate and credible information to support your statements.
- Outlining - the ability to create a consistent and logical plan for your text.
- Clarity - being able to express your thoughts in a straightforward manner.
- Editing and proofreading - attention to detail that helps you deliver a mistake-free text.
- Communication - being able to convey a message in an appropriate way.
A few other skills are also related to writing. For instance, you can’t be a good writer without critical thinking. It helps you see one issue from different sides, thus helping you deliver a copy highlighting diverse opinions.
What to Do if You’re a Beginner in Writing?
Alright, it’s now all clear with the skills you need to learn. But where do you actually start?
We could just say, “start practicing right away,” but that would do nothing. Instead, let us share some valuable tips to help all beginners become better at writing.
- Read as much as you can. Saturating your day with reading material of different styles will help you expand your vocabulary and understand how to structure different texts.
- Keep a journal. This simple daily activity can help you develop your own writing style.
- Search for writing groups. For instance, you can go on Facebook and browse different interest groups where members help each other become better at writing.
- Learn to differentiate credible resources. It is essential if you want to write professionally and is crucial in academic writing.
- Take online and offline courses. Under the guidance of a seasoned instructor, you will be able to boost your writing skills in no time.
Of course, all these tips won’t be enough if you don’t exercise consistently. Practice makes perfect, and the same goes for improving writing skills.
However, a structured approach is very important here, meaning that you should practice writing based on the common writing forms.
Not sure what we’re talking about?
Read on to find out.
A List of Different Writing Forms
Writing forms, also known as formats or styles, represent different manners of expressing thoughts. There are four writing formats fit for different occasions.
Let’s take a closer look at them.
Format #1: Narrative writing
Narrative writing is also called storytelling. In other words, this style means that you’re supposed to share your own experience or describe the story of a character.
If a professor asks you to write in this style, you should create a plot, setting, make up a conflict and how a character is engaged in it, and deliver a certain message. Writing in a narrative style can really help you become a good author in the future.
Narrative writing is common in novels, memoirs, short stories, and sometimes speeches and presentations.
Format #2: Persuasive writing
This style requires you to provide arguments to get a specific point across. Here’s where you need to do really good research and use your critical thinking skills to support your opinion. That’s why persuasive writing employs the following resource types:
- Statistics and studies
- Anecdotal evidence
- Textual evidence
You can spot the persuasive writing style in essays, sales writing, cover letters, etc.
Format #3: Descriptive writing
When it comes to descriptive writing, your task is to go into detail regarding a specific topic, character, situation, etc. If your professor gives you a descriptive writing task, they want you to learn how to create a text that immerses the reader.
You find examples of descriptive writing in poems, fiction, memoirs, and copywriting. Descriptive essays are also a common task ordered from our college paper writing service.
Format #4: Expository writing
Here, you are supposed to teach a reader something on a specific topic. The main goal is to answer a specific question. At the same time, your writing should be clean of jargon to ensure that everything is clear to the reader.
You can find expository writing examples in guides, textbooks, technical writing, etc.
Strategies to Improve Your Writing Skills
Now, let’s continue our guide on how to improve writing skills with a few useful strategies. In general, you can use any approach you feel comfortable with, but the following strategies can really be of great help if you’re a beginner.
- Always start with an outline. Remember, the more structured your writing is, the easier it will be for you to do research and create a straightforward piece.
- Break down your work into blocks of time. Write for half an hour, and then give your brain a 15- minute rest. As you progress, you can extend the time for writing, but the breaks should still be 15 minutes to help your brain recharge.
- Focus on one section at a time. You may want to jump over to the section that interests you the most, but this way, you risk losing consistency.
- Don’t start with the introduction. Explore the topic first, write the body of your text, and once you’re done, you will be able to write a more in-depth introduction.
Also, if you want to learn how to improve your writing skills faster, give yourself daily tasks. Make sure that you have someone to supervise you (it can even be your parent or an older sibling) - this person will give you valuable feedback on your writing.
Tips for Improving Your Writing Style
As you now know the basic writing skills to improve as well as valuable strategies to help you do it, let us share a few additional tips that can help you become better at writing than your peers:
- Always start with a good hook. A hook is something that will draw the reader’s attention and motivate them to keep reading. It can be a story or a simple question that relates to the reader.
- Create a sense of direction. Make sure to add transition sentences to improve the flow of your text.
- Start a dialog. If the style of your text allows it, create a sense of talking to the reader - it will improve engagement.
- Be as clear as possible. Don’t overcomplicate your text with difficult terminology and jargon unless it is required by your professor.
Reading fiction and non-fiction also helps you find your unique writing style. So, if you want to become a good writer and hate reading, it’s time to change your attitude - reading should become your daily routine.
So, you can definitely become a good writer, but you’ll have to go through long training, for sure. You’ll have to start with lots of reading, daily practice, researching, and editing. Keeping a journal also might help you develop your own style.
Hopefully, our guide on how to improve writing skills will help you become more confident in them in the future. Meanwhile, if you’re having struggles with your writing tasks, why don’t you let us help you?
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