Vital Tips on How Writers Can Improve Their Skill


One essential thing for any writer or aspiring writer is the fact that one must be a good reader.

This point came out very clearly recently when I was reading a blog and I was brutally disappointed. The writing was pretty mediocre rife with typos, wrong vocabulary, poor grammar and passive voice. The content was pretty average too. Like many other blogs, the writing was simple and conversational but nothing grabbed me.

It was painfully forgetful and while the writer could have blown the readers away, she chose not to. However, it appears the writer could salvage or, in this case, could have redeemed herself by being keen on one small thing – reading more.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not criticizing in bad taste. I recognize that all need not be the same. One should know his/her audience and therefore, use the appropriate language. Hence simple and conversational style writing is not bad if you can get your message to your readers.

However, if your writing is just fluff, a reader will realize it. It doesn’t take the reader to be an academician or expert in grammar. People are somehow wired to know whether a writing is good or pathetic. Anyway, the point is any aspiring or serious writer should be a constant reader.

One needs to read a lot. Novels, periodicals, magazines, etc. Writers need to grasp the art of language and acquaint themselves with the finer points of words. They should also jot down notes and thoughts as they come during the reading process. Reading another writer’s work is gratifying and inspiring.

If you are a writer, who doesn’t read you will regularly find yourself facing challenges in that your vocabulary might be weak and at best average.

Sometimes the aim of reading shouldn’t be to finish a book. For a writer, it is important just to read for the sake of reading. This will help you be passionate about writing and you can also learn new ideas about things you might never have thought about.

Here are a few tips on how you can begin to read your way to becoming a near perfect writer.

  • If you aren’t quite sure what to read, start by reading what everyone is reading. You can find that out quickly on the internet.
  • Don’t read to accomplish anything. As stated above, just read for the sake of it. What you derive at the end will be priceless.
  • Finally, study the use of language, vocabulary as you read. You could learn a thing or two.

Writing a Book Review

how-to-write-a-book-reviewWriting a book review involves a critical analysis of its content. In addition, the review must make an argument. It is important to indicate the author and the title of the book being reviewed. For one to write a successful book review, they must consider certain issues including;

Firstly, they must understand the thesis of the book. In essence, this refers to the main argument of the book under review. The person writing the review must also consider how the book’s thesis compares or contrasts with the world view on the subject matter.

Secondly, the person writing the review must understand the subject of the book and ask him or herself whether the author covers the subject satisfactorily and in a balanced fashion. Further, it is important to note the approach the author takes in tackling the subject. This could be chronological or topical. In other cases, it could also be analytical or descriptive approach.

The next thing that a person writing a book review needs to consider is how the author supports his or her line of argument. Here, the reviewer needs to identify the evidence used by the author in support of his or her argument. Moreover the person writing the review should indicate whether they find such evidence to be convincing or not and why. Some of the reasons for finding such evidence not convincing could be that it contradicts existing evidence by other authors.

Further, the reviewer must seek to point out how the author structures their arguments. In doing so it is important to identify the parts making up the whole book after which he or she should give their opinion on whether the author convinces them or not. The opinion given must be objective and backed with reasons

Finally, the person writing a book review should state how, if at all the book has helped them by adding to their knowledge of the subject. Would the reviewer recommend it to other readers?

Books that Aspiring writers should have

6a010536b33b69970b01a73db68ef3970d-400wiWriting is an art which is learned over time. There are several pieces of advice out there given to aspiring writers . But the best advice is: read read and read. Surely you cannot expect to be a writer if you do not read. Here are a few books you must read as you continue developing your art in writing:

  1. Becoming a writer – Dorothea Brande

This masterpiece has been recommended by some experienced writers as the best in the industry. The book delves on what it take to become a creative writer inside out. It is not a technical book but offers a lot of great advice in a straightforward manner. It is also recommended for beginners who need to learn the art of authoring a book, self-discipline to achieve a complete work and other critical issues in writing a book.

  1. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft – Stephen King

Stephen King is one best-selling author of all time. This particular book is an inspiring story and a novel full of relevant advice. It gives the insight of how Stephen King developed to become a master of the art of writing in a world full of never ending challenges. You also get loads of tried and tested tips on how to become a writer, for example, use of the passive voice and suggestions on the plot.

  1. As I Lay Dying – William Faulkner

This books is a masterpiece because Faulkner brings out one important thing in this book; there is no perfect way to tell a story. He masterfully uses 15 narrators to tell the story of a family’s quest to bury a matriarch in the town of Jefferson. He also adopts the use of the rarely used narrative device called stream of consciousness writing, a risky move that eventually won him the Nobel Prizefor literature.