A Few 80/20 Tips for Writing

Few non-native English speakers seem to become bestselling authors. Writing is tough. Writing in a foreign language is even tougher. Professional writers spend years perfecting their art. But most of us can’t put in the effort required to become one.

When I first started writing I was unsatisfied. My sentences felt clunky and didn’t flow very well. Luckily, I noticed that by sticking to a few patterns my style improved significantly.

The book that helped me the most was On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction. It’s mandatory reading for all journalists and book writers. I’m neither, but the perspective it gave me was invaluable. You should still read the book, but here are a few rules that will help you boost the quality of your writing immediately.

Pick a Good Topic

I found these to be the best sources of high quality, information dense articles:

My friend asked me to review his article. I sent him my review, copied the email to a text editor, replaced advice specific to his article with general thoughts and got the first draft of this post. Next I slept on it, rewrote portions of it in the morning and published it.

Stick To Your Topic

Style

Make your blog stand out, but not your writing style. Otherwise you’ll appear barbaric and foreign. Here are some rules of thumb worth sticking to:

Resources

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