20 Tips to Improve your Writing Productivity

So you’d like your latest writing project to get moving faster. Great writers have felt the same. Don’t worry, it’s fixable. When the words stop, writers have effective ways of getting them moving again. Plow new ground Write multiple drafts instead of obsessively editing the same one. You can tell the same story, but tell … Read more

Writing Styles (with Examples)

You’ve probably heard writers (or teachers, or critics) talk about “style” in writing. What exactly is style, though? It can be tough to pin down, because there are a variety of things we might be looking at when we talk about style. In most cases, though, style is about the individual word choices and the … Read more

Incomplete Thought Writing Mistakes

Writers sometimes sabotage their efforts to express themselves by leaving key information out of a sentence, resulting in confusing statements. Each of the following examples suffers from obfuscation due to one of more missing words. Discussion after each sentence explains the problem, and a revision provides a solution. 1. It has been called one of, … Read more

How to Focus When You’re Writing

Do you ever find yourself distracted when you’re writing? I don’t think I’ve ever met a writer who could honestly answer “no” to that question! Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, checking the news headlines, browsing a few webcomics, answering emails, ordering that book from Amazon you’d forgotten about … there are so many distractions just a … Read more

How to Write a Great Blog Post

Blog posts might look straightforward, but if you’ve ever tried to write one, you may have found it was harder than you expected. Whether you want to start a blog as a hobby, as a step towards freelancing, or as a tool to promote your book … your blog posts need to be well-structured and … Read more

Learning to Write by Reading

You might think avoiding other influences makes you a more original writer. But nobody can write in a vacuum. Even the meanings of words depend on how others have used them. You didn’t invent the English language. Everything you write, you learned from someone else, even if only from your first grade teacher. Only when … Read more

7 Ways to Beat Writer’s Block

Every writer, at times, has trouble thinking of what to say next. Or what to say at all. The cause may be fear, pressure, perfectionism, but often lack of inspiration. No doubt even Mesopotamian scribes of five thousand years ago hesitated before putting stylus to tablet. We’ve written about writer’s block several times over the … Read more

Top 10 Online Tools to Help You Write the Perfect Essay

Writing essays can be tough … and sometimes you need all the help you can get. The great news is that there are plenty of online tools that can help you write the best essay you can – and I’m going to be running through ten of the best. Before we get into the list, … Read more

Be a Ruthless Editor

Hard rules are a good thing for writers sometimes. The sonnet is one of the strictest forms of poetry, but some of the world’s greatest poems are sonnets. A haiku form is even stricter, seventeen syllables in three lines. Hard word counts force a writer to overcome his or her natural laziness by editing ruthlessly. … Read more

Who Determines Language Standards?

My recent post about declining writing standards garnered some thoughtful comments from site visitors, but as I read them I realized that the post had not addressed one cogent point: As one reader put it, “Who or what determines if a standard is indeed prevailing, or is on the way out?” In the sciences and … Read more

Best Websites to Learn English

Whether you are learning English as a second language or trying to polish your already adequate grammar and style skills, the seven websites below can help. 1. Memrise Memrise is an online flashcard website where people can upload their own flashcard stacks. You can find a range of topics ranging from Geography to Electronics to … Read more