10 Basic Writing Tips
Writing a text may seem like a simple task, but the truth is that many mistakes are often made when writing. A misspelled word or poorly placed punctuation mark could send the wrong message. So regardless of whether it is an informal mail or a work letter, writing correctly is an essential requirement to communicate in the professional world.
Here are some tips that, regardless of the type of text you want to write, will help you to improve your writing and communicate your ideas in a clear and simple:
1. Do you already know what you want to write about? Before you start writing the first thing to define is what you want to say. So before you get your creativity flying, ask yourself the following five questions and tell them: What do I mean? What is the central argument of my text? Who is my text for? Why do I want to write it? And How do I want to communicate?
2. Structure your text! Do not forget that every essay must begin with an introduction and must end with a conclusion. Try to follow the following formal structure:
Introduction: Introduce the central theme, the thesis or the problem to be addressed. It should also be mentioned what the text will deal with in one or two sentences that summarize the topic.
Development or Body: stage where the arguments and counter-arguments on the central argument are exposed and expanded. The length of the body depends on each writing but do not forget that each paragraph should develop an idea.
Conclusion: a synthesis of the above is made and a proposal, an outcome or an opinion is offered.
3. First comes first! The title is fundamental to attract any reader. Now, it is not always easy to find the right title so it is best to make it simple, to do with your narrative and, more importantly, to create interest. Before deciding on a title, ask your friends what they think.
4. Learn to use punctuation marks! Punctuation marks are essential to give fluidity and clarity to your ideas, therefore, the importance of using them properly:
Let’s eat children!
Let’s eat, children!
The point is used to separate different sentences or ideas, as well as at the end of an abbreviation.
The coma indicates a slight pause in the enunciation of the complete thought. They should always be used in the following cases: to separate two or more words or ideas, to limit a clarification and after the following phrases as they are: in effect, that is to say, agree, therefore, nevertheless, without However, among others.
The semicolon is a pause in prayer without supposing its end. It is also used to enumerate large items that must be separated or contain in themselves a comma.
Two points are used at the end of a sentence when you want to start an enumeration, when you want to write a textual quote, before expressing an enunciation and directing a letter.
Arguments are used as an unexpected pause in a sentence and when there is the following: doubt, irony, fear, expectation or at the beginning of a non-textual quotation.
Exclamation marks are used to emphasize an idea, give an order or show surprise.
Question marks frame a doubt or a question.
Quotation marks are used for textual citations, highlighting expressions, pointing out incorrect terms, enclosing meanings or translations, and citing titles of literary works.
The parentheses are used for clarifications, bibliographical references, translations of foreign expressions and to introduce acronyms or acronyms.
5. Presume a rich vocabulary! Try not to bore the reader and avoid repeating the same words in the same paragraph by using synonyms. There are many electronic dictionaries that you can consult:
6. Use links! Match your sentences and paragraphs to avoid abrupt interruptions between one idea and the next.
7. Order your prayers! Try to follow the usual order of words in the sentence using the following formula:
Prayer = Subject + Predicate
Remember that the subject and the verb are never separated by commas. To avoid complications it is best to place the verb as close to the subject as possible.
8. Do not abuse adjectives! Although the adjectives qualifying serve to make a text more descriptive, in the end, they are overwhelming. So before introducing too many adjectives one would have to ask if they are really necessary. When in doubt, answer the following two questions:
Does the adjective adequately describe the noun?
If the answer is yes, is that adjective necessary for the reader to understand the text?
9. Be consistent in numbering! Remember that:
The numbers from one to twenty nine should be written with letter and from 30 onwards with number.
It is also preferable that the tens and hundreds be written in letter.
Try to use numbers in numbers that have decimals.
Ordinal numerals that are written with numbers must be followed by letters flown as: 1st, 2nd or 3rd.
To indicate centuries, dynasties in certain cultures, numbering of volumes or volumes, denomination of congresses, festivals or contests and the series of popes, emperors and kings it is necessary to use Roman numeration.
10. Be accurate! Try to avoid using vague or generic words as a thing, something, matters, good, rich to refer to objects or situations. The vast majority of these words might be needed to better convey to the reader an idea and make any text more attractive.