Thursday, August 31, 2017

Why You Should Write to Be Scanned

Writing for the printed page and writing for the computer screen bare no resemblance to each other.  The difference is actually a physiological one, paper doesn't flicker unless it's set on fire.  If more light is required when reading, the simple thing is to switch on another light or move closer to the window.  Computer's are vastly different, they flicker all the time, this is commonly called the refresh rate.  Usually the most monitors are set too low by default, by aiming another light at your computer screen will only produce more glare.

Simply put, this makes reader's eyes more tired when they read the screen from a computer monitor.  This makes people more careful and read faster.  Before computer's become common place, people would spend hours reading letters and newspapers.  Thanks to the speedy internet people spend less time looking over articles, unless they're reading something really entertaining.

So what is the best way to write for a computer screen?

Write scannable content - Write for people looking for particular information.  Make the information easy to find.

Write lists - People love lists, theses usually begin with small marks or numbers at the beginning of each line.  If you're a technical piece, consider each step in order and use numbered lists instead of bullet points.

Write shorter content - Make your point quickly using the inverted pyramid style of writing, this is usually used by a reporter.  (See Inverted Pyramid below).

Don't leave your customers hanging with a long winded glowing sales pitch containing your price and how to order.  Instead provide the information immediately within your content, otherwise you risk your potential customer going somewhere else.

What you need to know about the inverted pyramid

This writing style was developed by journalists in the newsroom for reasons totally immaterial today... or not?

The principle of the inverted pyramid is to make your most important points at the top of your article, then followed by your next important point, in dwindling order of appearance.

Still used by newspapers today, historians think it was invented by 19th century wartime reporters, sending their stories by telegraph.  They wanted the most compelling information to get through first, in case their transmission was hindered.

So now more than ever, in our busy world make sure you give your readers their meat quickly, before they get hampered down by impatience, confusion, boredom and interruptions.

Decide what your main point is before you start writing something, tell them what they want to hear!

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Thursday, August 24, 2017

Why It's Wise to Write Well

Living in the age of such huge technological developments, no matter what job you might hold. Writing is a key component in today's world.  Being able to read and write still hold great weight are always going to be needed.  Most jobs these days contain a lot of words.

Take a look a some of the things you might write during a typical work day:
  • Content for your company's website
  • Notes from a meeting
  • A Power Point Presentation
  • Instructions for a junior member of staff
  • Memos and reports for colleagues
  • Emails
The list goes on and on, the simple fact is that text is currency on the internet.  Even though many businesses and blogger's are turning to video and audio content, text still has so many advantages; such as being easy to produce, scan and download.

Why is that every time you put pen to paper or fingers on a keyboard, do you need to write well?

First Impressions Count in Writing

In many cases, your first contact with a customer or client may be through email or reading your blog.  For example if you're:
  • Sending a CV or cover letter for a job
  • Replying to an email from a customer
  • A customer has come across your website
  • A work colleague has given you an email address for you to contact
This can also apply in more casual situations outside of work:

  • When you write a letter of complaint
  • Creating a dating profile
  • Writing content for a blog as a hobby
This shows you how people can form a strong impression of the writer based on the quality of the writing, as expressed in anhy blog or website.  You want the reader to come away with a good feeling!

People Prefer Quality Blog Posts!

Have you ever found yourself skipping poorly presented articles on the internet, with pages of poor lingo with bewildering headlines?

We live in a time that's immersed in information.  Writing ambiguous and grammatically incorrect blog posts, long-winded emails or a website full of language no one understands, won't be read.

You can be Googled Easily!

It doesn't matter how small your Facebook account, Twitter stream or blog is, you can still be found online.

Try typing in your own full name, in quotes, watch what pop's up.  When you find your results, ask yourself if a future client or employer would be impressed.  Most people have a footprint online these days, whatever you put out there needs to be well-written, even if its just a small biography on Google+.

What do you do if writing isn't your strong point?

Practice, Practice, Practice!

As a regular writer on the internet, honing my writing skills is never far away.  Whatever you do in life, doing extra to improve on that particular skill is never a bad thing.  If you want to go back to basics on grammar read essential grammar and punctuation.

If you're not comfortable putting pen to paper, try writing about something that interests you, do this for about five or ten minutes a day.  Try using different words from an online thesaurus.

Listen to yourself read out loud

Reading out loud is an important way to hear all of your flaws.  If you're a good speaker and lousy writer, you can really find this beneficial.  Often when you read in your head and skim down a page, you can miss things

Any long complicated sentences will become more noticeable - you'll discover them quickly when you find you're running out of breath as you read.

Ask for feedback

Ask your blog readers to comment on your posts, get colleagues and friends to read things over for you.  Get their thoughts on your own writing style, if they find it confusing at all?

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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Appropriate Word Usage

Do you like reading? Do you find yourself browsing through newspapers, magazines, novels and non-fiction books?  If you appreciate the "written word" you probably write really well, you've taken notice of writer's put sentences together.   You've seen how words are spelled and discovered that there is a common pattern to writing.  You've observed the complexity and beauty of words whether it be spoken or communicated, you want to use those words to the best of your ability.

A well written story can take you on a journey, you feel like one of the character's.  It whisks you off into a new dimension and time, so engrossing you forget and don't notice the world going on around you.  A really good story will make you feel euphoric, lifting you high into the clouds.  You just can't stop reading and want more and more.

Words are similar to music, the more we learn and discover about them the more enjoyable they become.  It matters not if it's music or words, they're both forms of communications, the more we know about each the better off our lives will be.

It's good to get "back to basics" and remind ourselves of how we express ourselves with words.  Communication can be formal or informal depending upon it's setting.  Usually you can find formal writing in fields such as technical and business reports, scientific and scholarly papers, and legal briefs, the list goes on. The aforementioned cases use the current professionally accepted rules of writing.

Informal writing is more appropriate for poetry, scripts, novels, personal letters, notes, e-mail, messages etc.  In these more casual settings we might want to relax the rules a bit and write directly from our hearts and heads.  Things such as spelling and sentence structure still apply.  The way we write and communicate with one another shows us who we are.  The rules don't suddenly disappear with an email.  All emails should be well structured and composed, just like any letter that is written. It's okay to be messy in personal messages.

Tell me your thoughts about how you write.  I'd love to hear them.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Discover the Websites that Pay Writer's $50+

If you're looking to start a career as a freelance writer here are some tips and websites for you to look into.

In the past few year's Google has helped to improve the content we see online today. "Content is King" is a simple phrase that captures that thought perfectly, it's true to say that no one understands the complexity of the algorithm Google uses (the formula used for ranking a website). Having individual and different content is definitely key. Writing fever has taken over and companies all over the world are crying out for new content to be written by individuals (such as you) on their website. A number of companies are happy to pay those willing writers out there for a really good article that will help boost their company in the search rank online.

No Experience Required

The good part about this is that you don't need previous experience in order to take advantage of what projects are on offer, no matter what your writing level is. The main perks to making money writing online are:
  • You can choose the subjects you're most passionate about
  • Work when and where you want
  • Start a passive income through performance payments
You're probably wondering where do I start? I've made a list of 7 different ways you can earn money by working from home.

Crucially there are two different way to get paid online: Upfront payments. You'll be paid an article in advance. It doesn't matter what the search engine ranking is for your article or page views it receives.

Where to start:
  • Infobarrel - An Adsense account is required, you share the advertising revenue with them. You can write about anything you want, and rest easy knowing that InfoBarrel has high traffic levels
  • Hubpages - With a great reputation its another revenue sharing site. You can earn money with Adsense and Amazon,
  • Blogging - You are in charge with this method, you can build up your reputation over time as well as your traffic. Definitely not a get rich quick method. The blogging community is growing every day with people making more money from their blog.
  • Textbroker - If you're looking for article and writing projects this may be the website for you. You can earn between $3-$8 an article. Companies and entrepreneurs post their writing opportunities on here. Have a look and see what suits you. Payment is made twice a week through PayPal.
  • Craigslist - Apparently a popular place to find writing jobs strangely enough. There are a lost of people who post jobs on there looking for writers to do work for them.
  • ProBlogger Job Board - New job postings are put on every day, if you're looking for a little extra work checkout this board as often as you can.
57 Websites that pay writer's more than $50+

Essay Writing

Monday, August 07, 2017

Perfect Tools for Writer's to Use Everyday

The Right Tools for the Write Job

If you're starting a blog, or website and want to be successful, you need to be able to publish blog posts consistently each week.  In other words you need to be able to write.

It doesn't matter how long you've been doing it or whether your new to writing, it never gets any easier.  Writing is a skill that anyone can learn and try out, you need it in so many jobs these days and your daily life.

So how do you become a successful writer and produce blog posts people want to read?  You need the right tools for the right job.

As a writer, you may have a passion for fiction, or if you're like me you just enjoy writing about writing.  Either way you need various tools for the job.

I want to show you some of the most simplest tools to help you on your writing journey.


With the rise in eBooks starting digitally makes a lot of sense and will save you time.

Here are 4 options for word processing:

Created for Apple PC's and devices.  Allowing you to create beautiful documents in real time

A free to download open office suite, compatible with other office suites.


After you've created your content "Grammarly" is a great tool to show you any typos, punctuation errors, weak construction or difficult sentences.

Microsoft Word

Word is great for writing both eBooks and articles.  I use it for typing out eBooks.  A rough draft to begin with then going through the details over and over again with a fine tooth comb until I'm satisfied with the finished article.  You can add hyperlinks and a contents page with ease.

Research Tools


Apart from reading books and magazines Google is one of the best research tools around.

Finding a credible expert and a primary source is half the fun of researching any eBook or article. Try looking for well know experts and media outlets.

Spell Checkers

Eyes are the Best 

Even though I use a spell checker on Word or Blogger, I always go over everything with my own eyes.

Here are some of the things a spell checker will miss:
  1. Spell check doesn't always offer useful spelling suggestions for badly misspelled words.
  2. Spell check may point out errors which are actually correct.
  3. Spell check won't detect the improper use of homonyms, such as their and there.
Writing Tools

Notebook and Pen

You may think its a bit overused and boring, but not to a writer.  With a notebook and pen you can write anything your imagination allows.  "The pen is mightier than the sword"! I always try and carry both of these writing tools around with me in my bag.  If you want something more old school then you can go no further than a fountain pen for real penmanship.

It doesn't matter  how many notebooks you fill up, you have a permanent record of all of your thoughts and ideas over time.  Even if your ideas really sucks.

Read Novels

If you want to write fictional stories you need to read and read a lot of books.  Read any stories long or short you can get your hands on.  Don't take notes, just read and read.

Use your spare time looking around second hand book stores, charity shops and libraries.  Remember you don't need to spend anything when you borrow a book from your local library.

Study the Art of Writing from the Best

So you've read the fiction you want to write about, you're keeping a journal and notes.

Now study from the best writer's on the subject by reading some non-fiction book's.

On Writing - Stephen King

Immensely helpful to any writer this is part memoir, part master class in fictional writing by the master himself.

On Writing Well - William K Zinsser

Praised for its sound advice, clarity and warmth, this book is for all those writers who want to learn how to write.  Or who write just to get through the day.

On Writing - Charles Bukowski

Sharp and moving reflections on the artistry and craft of writing, from an iconoclastic, riveting and celebrated masters.

It can take a whole lifetime to master the English language so you need to start now if you want to write fiction.

The guides below plus a really good dictionary and thesaurus are also a must have in your toolkit:

Useful Writing Guides
The best advice I can give you is find a software program your comfortable with and stick with it.

So go on pick up your pen and notebook or switch on your desktop.  Write that novel!

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.