You’ve probably heard all the terms. Author. Writer. Wordsmith. Wizard of words. Scribe. Litterateur. Well maybe not this one! But no matter which one you claim when you sit down with your pen — or keyboard — they all mean you’re going to use words to communicate an idea or story of some sort.
But are you using effective words? Do they have the strength of a brick wall or a tissue paper?
One of the biggest things to consider with your words is how much meaning they actually add. For example, if I write that it’s a beautiful day — what do I really mean?
Sure, sometimes, you’ve got the context of your story or article to provide some kind of hint on what beautiful means. If the story is set in the summer in Saskatchewan, likely it’s warm and sunny. Right? Well…maybe. For me, a beautiful day is in the ’80s (upper 20s in Celsius), while to my dear hubby a beautiful day is one just touching 70 (21 C). And I like sunshine — while he likes some fluffy clouds floating overhead. Get the picture?
Right, you couldn’t get the picture because I just told you it was a beautiful day in July!
I could have used more effective words: Sunshine covered the dusty country road, while the wind created tiny whirlwinds as it passed. Or: The clouds overhead provided a welcome reprieve from the ninety-degree temperature.
Need help with turning your words into ones that have the strength of a brick wall instead of a tissue? Here’s an infographic with some great tips.
Infographic: 28 Boring Words and What to Use Instead
More Great Tips
Just in case you’re looking for good sources of writing information and tips, I’ve included this Storify collection of Twitter posts. Remember, there are many writers on the Web sharing their expertise. And, if you’d like to take a class, check your local college or library to see what’s offered. You may find my course – Write Effective Web Content – useful!