How To Improve Your Writing Skills in Four Ways

4 ways to develop your writing skills to write better

Profile photo of Harleena Singh - | 135 Aha! comments | Posted in category: Writing

A boy practicing to improve writing skills

Do you want to improve your writing skills and become a better writer? I think if you are a blogger or writer like me, you surely would – wouldn’t you?

I get a lot of emails and messages from people asking me these questions repeatedly – “How can I improve my writing skills?” or “How can I develop my writing skills and become a better writer?”

So, I thought of starting a new “Writing” category on my blog, especially to help these friends, and this is the first post under that head.

Well, let me start by confessing that I am not a good writer, nor do I have any special writing skills to speak of. But with time and experience, I’ve improved my writing skills – though the process is still on.

You all have different reasons why you want to improve your writing.

Perhaps you want to write good blog posts, write great essays for your English class, write or publish your first eBook, author a book, or perhaps you just want to learn to respond to emails and comments in a better way.

It’s a well-known fact that the more you write, the better you become. But you also need to read a lot to become a better writer, which develops your writing skills too.

Becoming a good writer takes practice, hard work, and knowledge. Nothing is impossible if you are ready to learn 🙂

“Writing is the best way to talk without being interrupted.” ~ Jules Renard

4 Ways to Improve Your Writing Skills

You might have come across a lot of resources to improve writing skills or ways to develop your writing to get better. But here are a few specific ones that I’ve followed and they’ve worked for me.

1. Read a lot

You need to devote a little time, perhaps daily, to read. Just pick up any book, magazine, newspaper, or something online to read and try to understand the works of influential people.

When you read, you expand your knowledge, build your vocabulary, and enhance your imagination. This was a habit my parents inculcated in me when I was a child.

I remember the time when I used to read story books before I slept, and that became a habit with time. However, it’s something I need to get back to; though I’m glad my children have taken up this habit from me.

When you read, you begin understanding your writing better. Move out of your usual comfort zone and read something different to enhance your writing skills.

You could even try reading essays or classics to understand why it was so effective and influential. Even people, events, movies, and television can inspire you, isn’t it?

I think it’s best and easiest to improve writing skills by reading. Do you like to read? If you do, what do you like reading?

“The greatest part of a writer’s time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over half a library to make one book.” ~ Samuel Johnson

picture with writing is my hobby written on it

2. Write, write, and just write

Writing IS the only thing that can enhance your writing skills. Sometimes you get so influenced by reading someone else’s work that you start imitating them.

You need to learn from the writers or books you read but develop your own voice – your own writing style.

Don’t sit to write as soon as you finish a book or reading something. Give it a break, and then write. I know it took me time developing my voice, where blogging and writing is concerned.

Let’s see how and where all you can write –

● Carry a notebook or journal, wherever you go. Just pen down your thoughts before they vanish!

● Write down ideas that come to your mind. These could be from blogs you read, phrases, comments, characters, topics, titles, subtitles, events, or just anything.

● You could rewrite your old blog posts to re-purpose them. You’d be surprised to see your improved writing skills now as compared to what it was earlier.

● Join a local or online writing workshop or writer’s conferences and groups. These are ways to stay motivated because you learn from others when you talk to them and get feedback on your work.

Also, these are a great place to meet literary agents, publishers, authors, writers, and editors. It has been a while since I joined one, though.

● Participate in writing prompts as these are good ways to improve your writing skills. Creative Copy Challenge and Writer’s Digest, besides others, provide prompts and writing exercises.

● Comment on blog posts by challenging yourself to write long comments, instead of the usual 1 liners. You’d be surprised to see your writing get better.

● Be creative – think outside the box! Don’t write the same thing every day or you’ll get bored. Try writing the same post or story in different tenses, or a different perspective.

● Find the right environment to write. Try different places or different times of the day to see what suits you. Perhaps you have writer’s block at night, so try waking up 15 minutes earlier, and write in the morning. If you have trouble writing in a noisy place; find a quiet and comfortable one.

● Write EVERY DAY! There is nothing better than writing daily if you really want to develop your writing skills. Write at least 1,000 words every day, or start with 500 words and increase it slowly.

When you think you’ve written enough, write a little more – it only makes you better. Just pick a topic and WRITE!

It could be a blog post, emails (if you take time to write long ones!), and even comments, especially if they are like mine – nice and long 🙂

Writing requires dedication, time, and patience. Don’t rush through your writing, something that happens with me when I have less of time.

To improve your writing, you need to write at least 5-6 days a week, if not more. All you need to do is set aside a fixed time to write daily, and just sit and do it!

“The secret of becoming a writer is to write, write and keep on writing.” ~ Ken MacLeod

3. Work on your grammar

I know blog writing is a little different than the real writing because one can afford to be a little casual here. But when you have to write for your clients or professionally, you need to take utmost care.

Here are a few things to keep in mind –

● Use less of passive voice, and more of active voice. It isn’t always bad to use the passive voice, but active is what’s generally preferred. For example – “The book had been written by Oscar while he was in college” is passive. “Oscar wrote the book while he was in college” is active. I’d be taking up the details about the active and passive voice in a later post.

● Keep your writing clear, direct, and simple. Use the right words at the right time. Don’t fill up pages saying what you want to, if it can be said in a few words.

– Don’t make your sentences too long or hard to read. Remember, the longer you write, the lesser you might hold your reader’s interest. (I hope that’s not the case with my posts!)

– Take care of spelling mistakes.

– Use paragraphs to break your text.

– Take care of the punctuation – use colons, semi-colons, apostrophes, and commas in the right places.

– If phrases aren’t needed or aren’t adding value, just cut them. Sometimes removing what is not required is best done at the editing stage, that’s how I do it. I usually don’t stop my flow of thoughts when I write. But when I edit, I cut the chaff, though I still need to work more on this. 🙂

● Good writing skills include using strong words, being precise and evocative. Finding the right word, whether it’s a verb or adjective, can spice up your writing. Be specific when you write, without repeating the same words, unless you really have to – as in rhyming words.

● Work on the emotions through your writing. Your readers should feel what you write, whether it’s through your blogs or other writing. Nothing works better than feelings and emotions, don’t you think so?

● Just don’t follow the rules – break them! Sometimes it’s alright to break the rules if you know how and when to break them. This only happens once you’ve mastered it all. However, make sure that you write well enough otherwise.

● Correct your grammar using online resources. Grammar is a pain, I agree. But you have help if you use resources like Grammar Check, GrammarBook.com, or Grammarly (I use Grammarly and this is a affiliate link).

Even switching on the spell-check and grammar check on MS Word, your iPad and Google Doc helps. I work on MS Word and it works perfectly for me. How about you?

● Edit and re-edit your work – not once, but 2-3 times if required. Editing IS essential, whether you are a blogger or a writer. I don’t think anyone’s perfect – nor is there a perfect masterpiece in writing.

If an author or writer could find something to change in their work, even after completion, if given another chance – they would. Rewrite if necessary – don’t hold yourself if you feel you need to work on your writing to make it better.

Once you finish your work, read through to edit. That would make your first revision, where you can remove the unwanted phrases, words, and check the grammar.

The second revision should ideally be on print or once you read your writing aloud. Hearing your voice, as opposed to seeing your words, may change your thoughts about them. You might get the chance to work on rambling sentences or pretentious-sounding terms.

The third revision should be the next day, or with a fresh pair of eyes. If you cannot afford to do that, even a few hours can make a difference. You can edit the typos, add or delete paragraphs if need be, to make your piece better.

If you have a professional editor, its ideal, but if this isn’t affordable, choose someone to proofread for you.

The person doesn’t have to be better than you. Instead, you need someone to give you feedback on how your tone and points are coming across.

I’m lucky that my hubby is my second pair of eyes there, though sometimes both of us turn blind, because we aren’t perfect 🙂 (That is why we also use and rely on Grammarly)

Remember, writing should be fun – something you enjoy. Also, there is no one right way to write. You need to find your own writing style and work on it.

“Write. Rewrite. When not writing or rewriting, read. I know of no shortcuts.” ~ Larry L. King

A woman improving her writing skills by practicing

4. Keep your readers in mind

Whatever you write, you need to write clearly, concisely, and avoid ambiguity of any kind. You want your readers to read, understand and absorb all that you write comfortably. So, short is the answer!

If your page layout is full width, then keep your sentences short, or else set it for a shorter one.

If you think of speed, then 100 characters per line is ideal for reading depending on your font size, and about 45 characters is best for readers comfort.

Use more of associative or descriptive words, paired with a few pictures because images can do wonders to your writing. People will be glued to your work.

Reading online IS tiring. Ask me!! So, do all that you can to reduce the strain by trying the following –

● Add bullets and subheads to break your lines and express yourself.
● Don’t add more than three short sentences to a paragraph so that it’s easier to read.
● Keep a comfortable font size so that your readers don’t have to squint to read.

Most importantly, stay on topic. I sometimes wander off from my main point too if I write too long, which confuses people.

So, building a rough outline helps. Decide on your main and sub-points before you start writing, and ensure your writing is relevant and related.

“Write while the heat is in you. The writer who postpones the recording of his thoughts uses an iron which has cooled to burn a hole with.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

No one is born a writer. Learning to become a good writer takes time, practice and determination. Check out this wonderful video that tells you the way to improve your English writing skills

How To Improve Your English Writing Skills ~ YouTube Video

Speaking of myself, it was only when I started my freelance writing career that I really started to write, which was a few years back. Before that, I was not into writing of any kind at all!

It is now with time, that I write a lot, whether it’s through my blog posts, emails, writing projects, and of course, comments! How can I forget those! 🙂

Thus, if I can write, so can you. And if I am ready to improve my writing skills, aren’t you? All you need about English grammar is a good handbook.

Go ahead and challenge yourself to write every day, if you aren’t already, and watch the magic happen 🙂

“Forget all the rules. Forget about being published. Write for yourself and celebrate writing.” ~ Melinda Haynes

Over to you

Do you write? If you are a blogger or writer, what writing tips would you like to share with our readers to become better? What have you tried to improve your writing skills? Share in the comments.

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos, Danoff



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135 Comments - Read and share thoughts

  1. Enstine Muki

    March 4, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    I used to be a very bad writer. The only thing I could write with confidence were my php codes but since I started blogging in 2012, I have grown quite impressively. I learned a lot from Sue from write clever and from reading many other blogs.

    I believe constantly writing and reading have contributed heavily to where I am today. I’m no where near perfection but I think the growth is steady 😉

    You have given some important points in step 2 I’ll put to practice. Coming from you, this will surely be positive.

    Thanks for yet another educative post and do have a wonderful week. 😉

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 9:18 pm

      Hi Enstine,

      Is that so? Doesn’t look like it at all – you seem to be a seasoned one from the way you write now. Lol… php codes! I’m honestly scared of codes and I don’t think they have much of writing in them, do they? Oh yes…Sue is an awesome writer and I’m so glad she’s working on her fiction books now.

      No one is perfect, and each time you read a post – even if I read my own, I always find mistakes. I guess one’s never satisfied with what we write, or perhaps we know it can always be made better, if one’s given enough time, which is what we all lack. I agree with you there – the more you read, either reading online or offline, the better you become. I do hope these ways help in some ways, though I know I need to learn a lot myself 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

      • Enstine Muki

        March 4, 2014 at 9:27 pm

        Seasoned?
        Wow! If you say this then I must do more.
        Yes programming has a lot of writing; executable codes and comments and sometimes we a lot of copy and paste too 😉

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          Harleena Singh

          March 4, 2014 at 9:56 pm

          Oh yes – you are as I saw the guest post you’d sent me, it hardly had any mistakes, except for a few minor ones, so I know 🙂

          Ah…glad I’m away from codes! I need to get over the fright I guess 😉

  2. Shalu Sharma

    March 4, 2014 at 7:20 pm

    This is an excellent post on how to improve your writing skills. It comes at the right time for me where I am trying different thing from setting new blogs and writing ebooks. Thank you for this excellent guide from a seasoned blogger like yourself. I have read your blog posts and I can really say that you are one great writer yourself. I like your idea of writing 1000 words a day, I think this has the ability to do wonders to your writing skills.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 9:25 pm

      Hi Shalu,

      Glad you liked the post and I’m happy it comes at the right time for you too 🙂

      I marvel at the way you are writing your various eBooks and new blogs, because I know it’s not easy to handle it all, especially when you have a family to take care of as well. Yes indeed, if you write a little daily, there’s no way you’d not improve your writing skills – after all that’s what makes you perfect with time.

      Thanks for your kind words of appreciation and for stopping by here today. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  3. Miracle Ayodele

    March 4, 2014 at 7:32 pm

    I am really happy with this post.

    I have been a victim of people that search for a good writing skill, but finally you have made me understand that consistent writing will improve the writing skill.

    I am not sure it is possible to write without little mistakes and or grammatical errors, but how many of us are ready to cross check the write ups, I have gone through many blogs and there is always one error or the other. So the issue is not about the error but about the proof reading of the write up.

    I also agree with Reading. Many don’t have the flare for reading, some prefer listening and watching,they are all good, but I vote more for reading, there is something hidden in reading. lol

    Ambiguity is also one things writer must avoid. Ambiguity means a word with different meaning, so always try to make sure your readers understand your grammars. Keep it simple and short.

    Thanks

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 9:40 pm

      Welcome to the blog Miracle!

      Glad you liked the post and could relate to it 🙂

      Absolutely! There is no substitute for reading and writing to enhance your writing skills. Mistakes are a part of life, and they do show up in our work, whether it’s writing or anything else we do – so we accept that. However, we make efforts to improve and get better, which happens only with time, patience, and practice.

      It is essential to sleep over your post or written work, or at least set it aside for sometime before you publish it. That’s because you are bound to see it with a fresh pair of eyes the next day, which will help you pick out the mistakes easily. Proofreading IS essential and what you write, speaks a lot about you and your writing skills, isn’t it?

      I agree with you there, people prefer the visuals more than the font nowadays, but there is no substitute for reading as that is a totally different experience, which will make you a better writer in the long run. Keeping things simple, short, easy, and to the point is the key. Your posts should be such that even a 6th grade student can read it with ease.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  4. Kumar Gauraw

    March 4, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Excellent article with four great pointers!

    I think the first point is the most important one out of all the 4 not just because it’s about becoming a better writer but actually, it’s about becoming a better person, a better leader.

    Robin Sharma says, “Average people have BIG TV in their homes while high achievers have BIG LIBRARIES”

    I love reading personal development books (as I have mentioned many many times in my writing) and I make it a point to read at least 15-20 minutes everyday if not more. Not only it helps me in coming up with great blogging topics, it also helps me see my own weaknesses and strengths in a whole new light. Every time I read a book, I learn something new or I get reminded of something important. And that is a great way to start every single day!

    And then, of course, the more we do anything, the better we become. Obviously it takes consistent efforts and time to master anything worth mastering.

    Thank you for sharing these awesome tips. It is very valuable.

    Regards,
    Kumar

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 10:08 pm

      Hi Kumar,

      Thank you for saying that 🙂

      I knew you were going to love the first point most of all because of the amount of reading you do, as you mentioned in your posts. I love your habit of reading for a few minutes daily, something that I have to get back to now. Reading boosts you up with new energy and you enter into a whole new world, isn’t it? It certainly makes you a better person and leader, as you mentioned, and enhances your writing skills too.

      I like that saying by Robin Sharma – how do you remember all these quotes?! I agree – reading also gives us ideas for new blog posts and we do learn new things, and it does have an overall positive effect on us. Practice of anything makes you better in it, and writing is no exception there. Things take time of course, but they do happen if you are consistent and determined 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  5. I. C. Daniel

    March 4, 2014 at 7:50 pm

    Simply reading special blogs like Aha-Now, reading and reading and start writing and writing till I can, pause, gym, bath, eat, sleep and VOILA new day, new challenges, new articles to read and comment. Simply making money online!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 10:33 pm

      Hi Daniel,

      Lol…well – thanks for saying that 🙂

      Yes, I am sorry for the amount of reading you have to do on Aha!NOW because of the length of the post, but knowing me, you know I wouldn’t have it any other way, though I’ve started adding shorter ones too in-between. Reading so many blogs in the day does take care of our bit of reading, doesn’t it? But nothing compared to reading offline – the read hard copy, provided one finds time for it 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂

  6. Debbie Leven

    March 4, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Some great tips. I’d also add that using a timer can really kick start your writing. I find that it can really help to get me focused and to get my ideas down in some form. Also, whenever I think I’ve finished my blog or article I leave it for 24 hours and then come back with ‘fresh eyes’ – it’s amazing the things you pick up that you didn’t say before. I think you should write your copy to length and then go back and aim to edit it by at least 30% – that way you are tough on your words and sentences and the result is sharp copy that gets your message across.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 10:22 pm

      Hi Debbie,

      Nice to know that you liked the post 🙂

      Some people use timers and it works well for them, but I somehow feel it rushes me to complete my work in a set time period. Not that I write slow, but sometimes you need your own time and space to let the creative juices flow. Yes, a timer used as a reminder to get started is a good idea though.

      I agree with you about coming back to your post the next day, or after a few hours. I think you do pick up a lot of minor errors that way, which you might’ve missed earlier. Some people edit as they write, though that again is a personal choice I think. I too prefer to edit my post right in the end, though I keep going to and fro in-between too if it’s a long one – gives me a break! That’s what they say – you should edit mercilessly, tough one for me 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week 🙂

      • Debbie Leven

        March 4, 2014 at 10:31 pm

        Harleena, thanks for that. I’ve only just started using the timer approach. I found that I had a long list of things to do and copy to write but was struggling to kick start things. I have to write differently now – my day is much shorter to fit around kids and school etc. So, I’m hoping the timer ‘shock’ approach will keep me on track!

        • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

          Harleena Singh

          March 5, 2014 at 11:05 am

          I can understand that so well, being in a similar situation most of the time Debbie. Things are never easy with kids, especially if you have young ones – and even though mine are into their teens now – they have their own share of problems you cannot ignore.

          You need the right environment and time to sit and write…lol…let me know how the ‘shocker’ works for you 🙂

          Thanks once again 🙂

  7. Ravi Verma

    March 4, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    Hi Harleena Ma’am !!!

    Nothing can be better than this guide provided by you about improving the writing skill.

    The first point you have wrote is absolutely true. Reading is an essential part for any writer. There is no doubt, a good writer will posses a good reading skills too.

    As for a beginner is could be hard to stay long for reading some magazine,newspaper or any other material. But it is the key to get command on writing.

    I never used any online tool to check the grammar of my blog post, just like going through MS Word 🙂 And Believe me, I have experienced a great change in my writing these days. Even Atish Ranjan has appreciated for my improvement 😉 (He is a good guy )

    What I impressed me was your longer comment where I saw it. I really wonder How do you write a post like comment. I am also getting the same habit for leaving a longer one ( However not so much longer)

    By the way good to know you have started a dedicated category for writing on this blog. Now I have got an excuse to visit it regularly 🙂

    Everyone wants to improve writing, and I am one of them.
    Looking for next post in the same category.

    Thanks for this initiative to guide us about writing.
    Regards
    ~Ravi Verma

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 11:12 pm

      Welcome to my blog Ravi! Good to have you over 🙂

      Thanks for your kind words of appreciation, and I’m glad you liked the post – not really a guide as yet, I still need to write longer posts to make one!

      Absolutely! It’s only when you read, you learn and become better. It doesn’t happen overnight, but it does happen if you are consistent and determined to improve to get better. I’ve never used any tool so far too for checking my grammar, other than the simple MS Word, but I know people use the ones I mentioned, so perhaps it helps them. But even with these tools and site links, you cannot remove all the errors, those will remain to some extent. It’s only with practice that you become better. Yes indeed, Atish is a wonderful friend and if he’s noticed it, it really must be true 🙂

      Lol…well, I think I’m known more for my long comments than anything else. There’s nothing in writing long comments if you write from your heart. I guess I just write what I would have spoken, had the person been in front of me, so the words just flow with ease and turn into a long comment. Yes, I noticed that you too are getting the hang of it – keep going!

      Good to know that you are liking this new category on writing, and I’d surely be putting up posts here for everyone, at least such posts would make you stop by here, as you mentioned, though I’d love to have you stop and comment on all of the others too.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  8. David

    March 4, 2014 at 8:16 pm

    I had to grin at the first tip – to read a lot. I have two daughters, one a voracious reader (she read the entire Harry Potter series in English before they started reading English in school), the other who acts allergic to reading in either English or French. Guess which one writes better for her age? Never too early, never too late. The moire you read, the better you will write.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 4, 2014 at 11:26 pm

      Welcome to the blog David!

      Ah…that’s such a co-incidence as my elder one is like yours who read the entire Harry Potter series too, though not that when she was that young! Lol…I think they are the perfect siblings then – poles apart, just as most of them are. 🙂

      Yes indeed, it’s too early to say because kids change with time and you never know who really takes up to reading and writing more once they grow up. My younger one wasn’t that much of a reader, but tables have turned now and she reads a lot more than my elder one.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us 🙂

  9. Liz McGee

    March 4, 2014 at 8:23 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    There’s that tip on reading more again 🙂 But it’s such an important tip. For me reading is a subconscious connection. The more you read the more you are absorbing ideas, good grammar, correct spelling, ways to write creatively and more.

    I’d also suggest that for everything you read you also write a comparable amount.

    As with any skill writing needs practice and the more you practice the better you’ll be, even if it’s just writing your daily thoughts on a piece of paper at the kitchen table. Practice makes perfect.

    Blessings,
    Liz

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 12:03 pm

      Hi Liz,

      It sure is – without reading how can one learn to write! I agree with you totally, reading is a very essential part of our lives and helps us improve our writing skills.

      Some people are just lazy to write and prefer reading or watching, but there are no short-cuts to becoming better, which happens once you write your thoughts down, isn’t it? Practice is the only thing that works, and this is the case with any skill you want to master or succeed in.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  10. Sheryl Kurland

    March 4, 2014 at 8:29 pm

    Here’s one more tip that I religiously do … Keep a pen and paper in my nightstand by my bed. Inevitably I will think of writing ideas late at night and if I don’t write them down, I will wake up the next morning and think, “What was it I thought of last night? It was so good.” And then I can’t remember the idea to save my life! So I always grab my handy writing tools and jot down those late-night thoughts.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 12:07 pm

      Hi Sheryl,

      Lol…you are SO right to include that tip too! Yes, keeping a handy notepad by your bedside helps for the night time. I think being bloggers and writers, our brains are forever working, even when we are sleeping. At times I wish I could really sleep!

      Thanks for stopping by and the great additional point. Have a nice day 🙂

  11. Anita Desai

    March 4, 2014 at 9:08 pm

    Extremely useful tips. I look forward to your english grammar post on active / passive as I am avid reader and particularly interested in short stories.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 12:11 pm

      Hi Anita,

      Glad you liked these tips 🙂

      I would soon be coming up with various grammar tips in the future posts too, which would include the active and passive voice, though I know as bloggers we really don’t have to take it all seriously.

      Thank for stopping by 🙂

      BTW – Try using your Gravatar image so that we can all see who we are chatting with 0 just a friendly suggestion 🙂

  12. Corina Ramos

    March 4, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    I’m so glad you added this category and are sharing your tips and secrets to success with us :).

    I’m becoming more comfortable with calling myself a “blogger” but I know there is still so much to learn. It’s like you said if we want to become a better writer we should WANT to learn and improve our skills.

    I love reading books, it’s mainly Stephen King because he’s my all-time favorite author. I would love to write like him. When I read his books I can’t put them down. At night if I get up, I will pick up the book and read a little more before going back to sleep. I love that :).

    I just love these tips you shared. I need to work on #3. I use the exclamation point a lot and it’s not because I’m yelling but it’s my way of expressing my excitement and happiness (weird?). I’m a yeller in person. If something great happens I just shout for excitement (I’m the aunt the nieces and nephews run from lol). Is that okay or should I not use it so much?

    Thanks for sharing those great resources and video. I’m going to bookmark them and pocket this post too to use as a reference. I need to study this more :).

    My daughter acts as a personal editor sometimes and that helps :).

    What’s helping me improve is taking advice like this and what other bloggers have shared and putting it into action. Some folks read it and know they should do it but don’t. And so they wonder why their blogging career is at a stand-still when all the answers are right in front of them. 🙂

    Truly a great post Harleena! Can’t wait to read your next post! I hope you’re having a great day my dear!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 2:47 pm

      Hi Corina,

      This category was long over-due because of the number of messages I keep getting from friend’s on the various social media platforms. So I thought why not, though I don’t claim to know it all myself – as I always say – I’m still a learner and that includes my writing too 🙂

      Yes indeed, there is no stopping us to get better IF we want to. I’ve come across so many bloggers who have worked on their language and improved a great deal. This happens only if you are determined, isn’t it?

      I miss my good old days when I used to read too – just finding that kind of quiet, peaceful, alone, me time – is missing. I was going to add a quote by Stephen King too, but then I thought it might become too much – as you know I love quotes and he’s an awesome writer.

      It’s like we said – break the rules! And if you know it’s on your blog – no harm using it at all to convey your point. It doesn’t always mean yelling – kind of an excitement I’d say, and it works well. Like in your comment here, you hardly used it, except in the last sentence – perfect!

      Ah…thanks for saying that, though I just shared the very basic, the little I know too as there’s a LOT to grammar that I’d be sharing in bits and pieces, of course in a simplified form that everyone can follow. I liked the video too – I think it explained the ways very well.

      You write very well, Corina – or perhaps your editor daughter’s strict with you…lol..that’s cute I’d say. You are so right in saying that – it’t the effort that’s lacking. If you work on your writing skills, there’s nothing stopping you. I know my old work, and when I compare it to how I write now, I can see the huge difference. However, I’m never satisfied – there’s SO much to learn. I guess this new category would help me learn things too and share it with all of you 🙂

      Thanks so much for stopping by and adding more value to the post through your own experience. Have a nice day ahead 🙂

  13. SK Saini

    March 4, 2014 at 10:35 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Your post is very informative. Specially your tips for writing sentences in Active voice, using strong words and breaking rules are really great. Thanks.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      Welcome to the blog SK!

      Glad you liked the post 🙂

      Yes indeed, writing in an active voice is generally preferred, though not always necessary. Cutting the chaff and using the right words is the key, though I know when we blog, we tend to break the rules more, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  14. Jennifer Kennedy

    March 4, 2014 at 11:00 pm

    Great article, Harleena!!

    Improving my writing has been on my mind for quite some time now. The biggest obstacle I need to tackle is writing every day. I generally write when necessary — for blog posts, emails, or work documents. But, I would love to form the habit of journaling each day.

    The one idea that has completely helped me was writing without editing. I used to write and edit at the same time, which made for frustrating times. I was always in my head about what sounded wrong, what was misspelled, and what didn’t work together. Now, I write and let the words flow with disregard to editing. This has helped a lot because I’ve set myself free to just create. Then on another occasion I will return and edit — but they are never done at the same time. This is a technique I learned from the book Do the Work by Stephen Pressfield.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 6:47 pm

      Hi Jennifer,

      Glad you liked the post and could relate to it 🙂

      I can well understand your point about writing daily, it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea or need, just as you mentioned. But we forget that even comments like these, which are long and meaningful form a part of writing, and I speak that for myself. I think I’ve got better in my writing because of my long comments, on my post and my visit to other blogs too. So, actually we are writing ALL the time, isn’t it?

      Some people follow what you mentioned – they write and edit side by side. I do that sometimes if the post isn’t too long or complex, though I also prefer to let the post rest a while and then check it out with a fresh pair of eyes, before sending it over to my hubby – my personal editor – lol…!

      I think there are no hard and fast rules. We should do what makes us comfortable and be happy with what works for us, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  15. Ilka

    March 4, 2014 at 11:40 pm

    Hi Harleena!

    Great post – as always! And congratulation on your new ‘writing’ category! It looks like you had a great start! It seems to ‘speak’ to many people.

    Your tips are spot on. I always have a notebook with me and scribble lots of thoughts and ideas in it. I am sure I would forget most ideas without writing them down right away.

    And you are so right with the editing. Let it flow first and then edit like crazy. I do that too, but I have never read it out loud! I will definitely do that now. It makes so much sense 🙂

    I usually write everything that could be useful into a piece and then cut and edit it down.

    I know that it is preferred to use active over passive, but I still end up with lots of passive. I guess that is where I need to improve.

    And! I loved your Jules Renard quote. It truly made me laugh! Thanks for that!

    Keep writing and sharing Harleena! You are a Pro and a treasure!
    Ilka

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      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 6:58 pm

      Hi Ilka,

      Thank you for your kind words, and yes, this new category is created on popular demand I should say. I’m glad people are loving it as one can see through their comments and interaction. I hope it helps people in more ways than one too 🙂

      That’s the case with me too, though more than a hard copy of the notebook, it’s my notepad of laptop I use for jotting down thoughts as that’s forever switched on as I work on it.

      You’re a lot like me I should say – I rarely read loud too, though I tend to in my mind – not the real loud as it should be. I need to try that out – just need to work on creating more time for that one. Editing I feel should always be done at the tail end, and just as Debbie mentioned in her comments, something that’s not easy – edit it by 30% at least. I think when you are blogging, you don’t go to that extent, but you should to make it a perfect blog post, isn’t it?

      I guess because we are more of bloggers than writers, we use more of passive voice off and on, though active is what’s generally preferred. But who said you can’t break the rules! Ah…I loved Jules quote too – no interruption while we talk 🙂

      Thanks so much for your kind words of appreciation, though I’m still a learner myself. Appreciate you taking out the time to stop by here today 🙂

  16. Atish Ranjan

    March 4, 2014 at 11:42 pm

    I am still a very bad writer but trying to improve on daily basis. reading and writing on daily basis certainly help but the time is the biggest factor that I am not able to give so much time currently. Have to give a lot of time reading and writing a lot.

    By the way, I write a lot of emails in my office :P. I can say thatI do write good emails atleast.

    I like your point about active and passive.. I never cared about these at the time of writing but I will try to write more in active only.

    I think we should use passive voice when the Object is more important than subject which happens in some cases.

    Thanks for the great post Harleena.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 7:21 pm

      Hi Atish,

      Ah…don’t say that! You write very well as I’ve read your posts 🙂

      Yes, everything needs time, and that includes reading and writing too. Time issue is a problem with me as well, especially with kids and a family to manage, so my reading has taken a back seat. But I catch up with a lot of blog reading and commenting, so that helps me in some ways – though it’s not a substitute for reading good books, isn’t it?

      Lol…yes, writing emails is an art – a writing skill – and so is commenting! Most bloggers generally don’t care about active and passive voice, which includes me too, but it’s generally preferred.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us. Good to have you over after long – keep coming 🙂

  17. Babanature

    March 4, 2014 at 11:53 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    What a nice and healthy tips for bloggers like us to learn from 🙂
    Constant writing (keeping it simple and plain) and reading will indeed improve one writing style. I am still practicing how to write in a good way and hope i’ll get the whole idea someday.

    Yesterday, i had a quarrel about my writing style over at linkedin. The lady complained about my grammar mistakes… the only thing i could do was laugh heavily 🙂

    Well we are not perfect. English itself was made by someone… so instead of laughing or trying to embarrass some one, why not read and learn from that person.

    But thank God; she inbox me and told me that she learned some great stuff over at my place.

    I will surely take your tip on the grammar aspect and build my self more.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 7:28 pm

      Hi Babanature,

      Thank you for saying that 🙂

      You write well enough dear friend, and yes, the more you practice the better you become. It happens with time and when you are consistent with your writing. I think when we keep our sentences short, crisp, to the point and plain, it comes across in a much better way. They are easier to read and understand, isn’t it?

      Ah…LinkedIn groups, at least some of them, have real professionals and they are quick to point out mistakes. I had a similar incident once years back when I started writing too, though it only made me better because you learn to take criticism positively and work on yourself. Not everyone is able to do that though, so that was good of you. Don’t worry about the grammar – we’d learn it together because I’m not perfect in it myself 😉

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  18. Corinne

    March 5, 2014 at 1:24 am

    Excellent tips Harleena. My favorite is reading. When I find myself starting to use the same adjectives or my writing getting too repetitive, doing some fun reading really helps.

    Have a great week!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 7:30 pm

      Hi Corinne – nice to have you back after long 🙂

      Absolutely! I think doing the unusual or thinking out of the box is essential every now and then so that you don’t get bored with what you read or write otherwise. It brings out the creativity in you, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by. Have a nice week ahead as well 🙂

  19. Balroop Singh

    March 5, 2014 at 7:29 am

    Hi Harleena,

    This post took me back into the classrooms! The tips we used to provide to students and even during workshops, to junior teachers and many more can be added. I know your posts are already so long, so you must have needed one more such post to say all!!

    No doubt reading is the basic skill which helps us in improving our writing style and vocabulary but listening too is imperative, especially listening to good, meaningful discussions, not just watching movies or soaps. Also what you read, too matters!
    I have noticed that a lot of informal language has crept into books these days, so one should be careful with picking up such vocabulary, which has been deteriorating…well, it really leaves me disappointed when I read the best sellers too using such a language, which we never came across about a decade ago.

    Spellings can only be improved if we read each word carefully. This is another weak point of modern reading, busy readers just scan through whatever they read and the consequences are that spellings skill never gets developed. In schools too, leniency is shown towards this.

    Thanks for sharing such a helpful post, Harleena! Have a nice week.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 7:47 pm

      Hi Balroop,

      Lol….so sorry for the class-lessons 🙂

      You are SO right, and know me well enough I should say! I possibly couldn’t add it all in this one post because there’s a lot one can do to improve ones writing skills. That was one reason I wanted to start this new category, of course on popular demand by a few blogging friends.

      You raised a very good point about developing good listening skills, and that too listening to good discussions like news or talk shows because that helps you with your speech and vocabulary, and all of this enhances your writing in the long run.

      I agree with you there – some books aren’t worth reading at all, even if they are best sellers for the language they use. But I guess we are no one to judge, and can do our best by just putting that book down and picking up a new one. Nothing like the old classics or best sellers from time gone by. I could still read them all over again and enjoy them as if I were reading them for the first time.

      I’m glad the schools our end are pretty strict with spellings, right from the time children start their schooling. But you are right, generally people start overlooking this important point and it shows up in their work sooner or later. Reading the newspapers or magazines and keeping a dictionary close by was what my parents taught me when I was young, so that one could look up the word for the meaning, and you also learn a new word that way.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week as well 🙂

  20. Nanda Rahmanius

    March 5, 2014 at 8:24 am

    Hi Harleena,

    I like your idea with a lot of reading. Indeed, this will increase our knowledge and will have good effect in our writing. My way to improve my writing skills is to read a lot. By reading, I found many words that I had never met before. It was exciting!

    The only problem I have is grammar. Grammar is a pain, I agree with you.

    I am not a professional writer and I admit, I prefer to read than to write. That’s why my writing skills are far from perfect. However, I am still trying to improve my skills in writing, since I’m a blogger 🙂

    Thanks for sharing these helpful tips with us, Harleena,
    I’m sure this post will answer many questions for many people.

    Regards,
    Nanda

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 7:56 pm

      Hi Nanda – good to have you back after long 🙂

      Yes indeed, reading increases your overall knowledge and enhances your writing skills too. Just as I mentioned to Balroop, when I was a child, my parents encouraged me to use a dictionary while reading books, newspapers or magazines. This way you learn new words and look them up in the dictionary to know the meaning, and once you do that repeatedly, you start using them in your writing too.

      Lol…it surely is, and it takes time and practice to master it. I hope this new category would lessen the pain for all of us 🙂

      I can well understand what you mean, but being a blogger, you are already a writer in making, so just carry on and write on! The more you write, the better you will become, and perhaps you can start by updating your blog more often, which would make you write more often too.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us. Have a nice week ahead, and keep coming 🙂

      • Nanda Rahmanius

        March 6, 2014 at 1:41 pm

        Hi Harleena,

        It’s a great idea to use a dictionary every reading something we do not yet understood. By looking at the dictionary, the difficult words would be easily attached to our minds. You have great parents 🙂

        Yes, I want to update my blog more often, however, since my laptop is in trouble, I can not get online often. It bother me.
        I agree with you, if diligently update the blog, then our writing skills will increase, since we also have to frequently writes.

        Thanks for your advice, Harleena.
        I really appreciate it 🙂

        Regards,
        Nanda

  21. Mary Stephenson

    March 5, 2014 at 8:54 am

    Hi Harleena

    Sometimes when I keep reading on subjects I want to write about it works better if I leave a good amount of time before finishing. This keeps me from using other people’s way of saying something.

    Definitely write when it comes to you. I have gotten up in the middle of the night and wrote down a really good line or two for fear of rehearsing it over and over I would still forget it in the morning. The other flip of that is never being able to go back to sleep!

    Write when you feel the emotions. I remember back in high school we had to listen to this record (vinyl type – probably a 78). We had to write a description of what we heard. The record was something about sunset. As the record played I could picture in my mind the sun hitting the rocks and how the light bounced off them. Everybody else sat and listened to the record and I wrote all the feelings down. I had mine completed by the end of the record. Just went home and rewrote the work so it looked nice. My work was read in class and I am sure it put everyone else to shame. Got a top grade for that bit of work. That has taught me to write when the emotions are there, as nothing sounds as good as when your heart is in it.

    Mary

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      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 8:22 pm

      Hi Mary,

      I agree with you there, provided you read those kind of books or matter only. I guess you can be in the same flow that ways 🙂

      Lol…I can relate to that so well too! It’s happened with me while I was going for my morning walk and I had to note it down on my mobile before I forgot what it was. I can never remember anything when I sleep – I just drop off for the few hours I manage. I know it’s bad, but that’s just how it is. Penning your thoughts when they strike you helps in keeping them with you for using it later, or else you do forget them.

      Ideally that’s how it should be, especially for writers. But for bloggers, usually if they have days fixed, one can’t wait for the right mood or emotion, instead create the mood so that you can write. I say that because I have to work that ways for my posts, and similar is the case when I have to weave articles for my clients. I guess being a freelance writer, you cannot really have your free will each time, though if you are authoring a book, writing fiction or an ebook etc – you have that choice for sure.

      Awesome! It must’ve been written so well – I can well imagine! Those were the days when our teachers used to work on bringing out our creativity by such audios and even picture reading, something we were told to do a lot in class too. I think it just made our imagination run wild and it sure was fun when our work was read aloud – each one had something different to say about the same picture or audio, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  22. maxwell ivey

    March 5, 2014 at 9:06 am

    Hi Harlena; I loved your post.

    Its one of the most comprehensive I’ve read on the topic of how to improve your writing. read write edit and remember your audience; such a well planned out post. being blind i’m always reading my posts out loud or that is having them read by the speech software on my laptop. I’ have noticed that my friend Lorraine sometimes finds mistakes in my posts that I miss, and I think it may b because she is reading them visually. thanks again and take care, Max

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 8:25 pm

      Hi Max,

      Thanks so much for saying that – means a lot coming from you 🙂

      I’ve somehow never got around to reading my posts loud, except in my mind, which I do repeatedly till I’m a little satisfied before I hit the publish button. Yes indeed, Lorraine is quick to pick out the little mistakes we bloggers tend to make often, being the thorough professional that she is, but that helps us get better in the long run, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us – much appreciated 🙂

  23. Bishal Biswas

    March 5, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    I read this full article and found it really great. But the thing which I wondered the most that, how beautifully you have covered a 2200+ words article in so great way. Frankly speaking it’s really an worthy article and I just loved it. Thanks Harleena Singh for the great inspiration.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 9:48 pm

      Welcome to the blog Bishal – good to have you over!

      Glad you liked the post 🙂

      Ah…writing long posts and long comments is never a problem with me. It’s writing shorter ones that I have to try now, which I keep doing in a few of my posts in-between. However, I’m glad that even Google prefers long posts now – 2000+ words.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  24. nikhil ganotra

    March 5, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    Hello Maam,

    Being a newbie I often make grammatical mistakes and this can only be done by improving writing skills and I must say this guide is perfect for me.Bdw I like your art of writing an article by inserting motivating quotes of reputed people. This helps me lot.

    Thanks for sharing this effective guide. Eagerly waiting for your next post.

    Have a great day Maam 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 9:51 pm

      Hi Nikhil,

      Absolutely! We all make mistakes, but it’s only with time, patience, and practice that we become better. No one is perfect but working towards perfection should be our aim, isn’t it?

      Ah…I love quotes, and most of my posts have quotes that inspire us and keep us motivated. Stay tuned for the next post coming Friday!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. Have a nice week ahead as well 🙂

  25. Ragnar

    March 5, 2014 at 3:02 pm

    It’s almost funny how straightforward becoming a better writer is. But what’s not so funny is the amount of time and effort it takes to truly become a good writer. But on the other hand, I guess it’s the same with pretty much anything. Becoming good takes practice. Most people get hung up on the idea of talent.

    Good post Harleena!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 10:11 pm

      Hi Ragnar – nice to have you back after long 🙂

      You are absolutely right – it’s never easy to become good in anything, whether it’s being a write or any business you start. Everything takes lots of time, patience, practice, and effort, but things do happen with time, don’t they? I think the answer lies that you keep at it – remain consistent and determined till you achieve success.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views – keep coming 🙂

  26. Jodi Aman

    March 5, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Harleena,

    I never thought of myself as a writer. I have something to say and share with the world but writing is NOT how I would prefer to do it. It is painstaking for me. But I know I have gotten better in the last few years since I write so much. I wish I could say that it has gotten easier, too! But I still struggle and take forever to write a piece. For me it is that words are dual and it is hard to include everything I mean in them. I hope that makes sense!
    I will keep pluggin away. Love the Thoreau quotation!

    Love,
    Jodi

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 10:19 pm

      Hi Jodi,

      Nor me! But I think every blogger, with time, turns into kind of a writer, isn’t it? I guess because you keep writing your blog posts you become better each time with the practice. I think if you update your blog more often, of course if you have more time, you’d write more – that’s how the flow develops.

      Lol…yes it makes sense. I guess you are more of a audio-video person and can convey so much better that way, as I’d seen your recent video at your blog with James. Perhaps the need to write isn’t as much, though if you can manage, there’s nothing stopping you.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  27. Himanshu

    March 5, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    nice post and I will surely follow your tips to improve writing skills.. I usually my competitors articles, Wikipedia, ebooks before writing any article…

    thanks for writing such a wonderful post..

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 10:24 pm

      Hi Himanshu,

      Glad you liked the post and I’m happy if these ways to improve your writing skills can help you 🙂

      Those are great ideas, though you must develop your own voice and writing style for writing your posts – taking cues and learning from them is good if they are great resources.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  28. Ahsan

    March 5, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    As you said its very important for every writer to read & learn by heart then implement in his writing. The more we read, the more our knowledge increases. So it will help to be a good writer.

    Another thing a blogger or writer need to write for his own self or readers not to earn money. If you write quality & useful content, it will immediately bring money.

    You covered all the basic writing tips in a nutshell. I am also trying to improve my writing style. Your tips will be an asset for me.

    happy Blogging 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 10:57 pm

      Hi Ahsan,

      Absolutely! Just as mentioned in a few comments above, there is no substitute for reading and writing – the more you do of it, the better you come. Besides, it helps you gain knowledge and better you self – overall, isn’t it?

      Yes indeed, your readers should always come first and you should write about things that you can and want to write about. Money should be secondary, though it’s never the case – money will come if your work is good, sooner or later.

      Thanks for stopping by, and I hope these tips help you in more ways than one. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  29. Steve

    March 5, 2014 at 11:25 pm

    Great points. Yes on all of them. I’ve met several people who say they want to be a better writer, but don’t want to make any time to read. Reading can make you a much better writer; it’s really important.

    One thing that has helped me immensely with writing is teaching it. I tutor people in better writing and reading comprehension. It definitely keeps me on my toes since they’re always asking me questions about grammar and word usage.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 5, 2014 at 11:43 pm

      Welcome to my blog Steve!

      I agree with you there, and perhaps that’s due to lack of time or the habit, which sometimes we tend to let go of as in my case! But reading is important and there is no doubt about that….I need to make time for that once again now 🙂

      Ah..that’s wonderful indeed! You are right about teaching – it sharpens your skills further and you master what you teach. I can say that having been a teacher myself, though years ago. You only get better with time, don’t you? I’m sure your grammar must be near perfection because you are teaching just that to your students.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  30. Debbie

    March 6, 2014 at 1:12 am

    Many, many great points here for becoming a better writer. Read a lot and write every day.
    And always carry a writing pad with you for those thoughts that pop into you head.
    I read a blog once that said…
    Write
    Write more
    Write even more
    Write even more than that
    Write when you don’t want to
    Write when you do
    Write when you have something to say
    Write when you don’t
    Write every day
    Keep writing.
    And as you say Harleena, read when your not writing.
    As for writing blog post, yes you are right I have to write it. Walk away from it and read it to correct it about 5 times before I am ready to publish. Sometimes more than that. I have learned to take out the little words that aren’t needed.
    Thank for the refresher on writing. We all need to be reminded.
    Debbie

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 9, 2014 at 7:29 pm

      Hi Debbie,

      Absolutely! I think there is no substitute for reading and writing, isn’t it? 🙂

      I loved those lines and have read them earlier – thanks for including them here – I think they’d motivate anyone to write and keep writing. It only makes you better.

      Lol…you are a lot like me there, though I always sleep over it, unless I’m in a real rush to publish it, which happens when I get tied up with other writing projects, deadlines, or household chores, being the mom I am!

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. Happy weekend 🙂

  31. William Butler

    March 6, 2014 at 3:33 am

    Hi Harleena,
    You’ve covered excellent points. I’s like to offer another to your readers. Writing is much like a pair of Army boots. I served in the military before my years in the police Dept.

    They issue you boots with bumps in the leather and the surface is dull. It takes a lot of discipline to get the boots shiny. You have to keep working the leather until it is pliable. Then it starts to take shape. Then you keep polishing the boots until they shine. To finish up, tie up the loose ends and hit the ground running. 🙂

    Warm Regards,
    Bill

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 9, 2014 at 11:56 pm

      Hi Bill,

      Glad you liked these little tips to improve writing skills 🙂

      Awesome! I loved what you mentioned and I can so well relate to what you said because my Dad’s and many generations are from the army, so I know those army boots very well! They surely take a lot of work – much more than setting up the uniform…lol…but the result show only when you sit and work on them, just like your writing skills, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your lovely views with us. Happy weekend 🙂

  32. Sherman Smith

    March 6, 2014 at 3:39 am

    Hey Harleena,

    This is an important subject for us bloggers! I know I can definitely make a lot of adjustments in my writing. I tell you, although English is my first language, I wouldn’t advise any non-native speakers to learn from me LOL, unless they want to learn American West slang terms because I don’t speak from the ‘book’.

    But I do believe I have made a lot of improvements since I started blogging. I have my ups and downs but I’m glad I have people like you to write posts like this and other friends like Sylviane Nuccio to point out grammar and spelling errors on my blog posts. This definitely helps a lot since I’m writing for me readers.

    Thanks for sharing these great tips! Have a great day Harleena!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 10, 2014 at 12:04 am

      Hi Sherman,

      Yes it is, and that was one reason for starting this new category on my blog 🙂

      Ah…I think we all sail in the same boat, so it’s not just you making the adjustments. I know what you mean, and though we speak in English at home and I’ve studied it to my Master’s level, when the writing comes, we all need to get better.

      I agree with you there and that’s because we keep writing so much, whether it’s our blog posts, comments, emails, or anything else. I’ve also noticed that those who maintain a daily diary or journal have good writing skills too. It all comes down to practicing to write, and doing so daily – even a little matters. We all learn from each other, and if you find any mistakes on mine, you must let me know too – that’s how we learn and get better 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Happy weekend 🙂

  33. Glori Surban

    March 6, 2014 at 6:36 am

    Commenting as a form of writing practice is a brilliant idea! You get to connect with other bloggers, possibly get backlinks, and then practice writing! Never really thought of it that way, but I can see how beneficial it is now.

    As for editing, I usually let an article sit for 24 or so hours before proofreading and possibly rewriting some parts. A little trick I learned form Carol Tice. 😉

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 10, 2014 at 12:11 am

      Hi Glori,

      It sure is! I guess I do a lot of commenting, whether it’s on my blog posts or visiting other blogs, and with the long comments I tend to leave, it sure takes care of my writing practice for the day 🙂

      That’s actually the best way because you can come back to it the next day with a fresh pair of eyes – makes all the difference I’d say.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  34. Donna

    March 6, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    Thank you for all of the hints and tips. I’m sure they’re going to be helpful. Morning is my time to read and late afternoon is my time to write. It just doesn’t work any other way! An idea I picked up from someone is to write what you love not just what you know. That has helped me so many times. Thank you again for your information.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 10, 2014 at 12:30 am

      Welcome to the blog Donna!

      Glad you liked the tips mentioned. I think that each one has their own schedule to read or write, depending on what suits them. For me, I prefer writing early morning when my kid’s aren’t around, or else my concentration isn’t there!

      Yes, that’s a nice idea, though if you are a writer like me and have clients or writing projects, you cannot follow that always 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂

  35. Riya Khurana

    March 6, 2014 at 8:45 pm

    I must say that one of great post i had complete just 2 second before..
    Writing is also one of important and key factor in blogging field..
    your writing must be understandable even you can write very few…

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 10, 2014 at 12:33 am

      Welcome to the blog Riya!

      Nice to hear that you liked the post and could relate to it 🙂

      Absolutely! You need to have proper writing skills if you own a blog and there are various ways you can improve upon them, if you wish to, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  36. Karmakar

    March 6, 2014 at 10:18 pm

    Hi Enstine,

    Are you kidding!!!… I believe you are better copywriter than a PhP coder… 🙂

    @ Harleena,

    This is my 1st comment in your blog. I hope this is the beginning of new friendship… 🙂

    Thank you very much for this awesome post. I believe that your 2nd point “Write, write, and just write” should have been the 1st one. I have personally experienced that.

    Recently I have finished my E-book on SEO and I could NOT believe myself that I have written 547 pages for that.

    Now, I can clearly see the changes in my writing style as well as in my typing speed.

    I think “typing speed” is also a valuable aspect of your writing skill…

    So, what I have done in last 6 months to improve mine:

    1. I have started writing my own E-Book.

    2. I have joined a community “10fastfingers” where you can practice writing on-line.

    3. I am practicing to describe a picture in different ways.

    For example, 2nd picture in your post just above point#4, after seeing that picture I asked these questions to myself:

    A. Is she looking too professional?
    B. Her pen is not matching with her outfit.
    C. Why she is NOT wearing glasses? That would have given more professional look.
    D. What about her hair? Open hair would have been much better… I think…

    And so on… After that I write down the possible answers for the questions that I have asked myself.

    How it helps me????…

    1. It increases my observation power.
    2. It challenges my creativity.
    3. It gives me a platform where I can write about the same problem in many ways BUT every time with new point of views as every time I ask different sets of question to get the answer.
    It took almost 11 mins for me to write this post which is 323 words long. This means I have a WPM of 29 approx… 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 12, 2014 at 1:56 pm

      Welcome to my blog Karmakar!

      I agree with you there about Enstine – he is awesome with the codes 🙂

      Yes indeed, if you write so much, there’s no question of you not excelling in your writing skills, though I guess that happens only when you read a lot.

      Congratulations on your new eBook, it sounds interesting! Ah…writing SO many pages for it would surely speed up your typing speed as you rightly mentioned. Similar is the case with me, thanks to my long comments and the posts as well. So, when I compare them with what it was earlier, there is a huge difference. I wish I could take out time to write an eBook too, a task that’s pending for a long time now. I guess either you can blog regularly, which includes commenting, on your and other blogs too, or you can write eBooks – though I marvel at those who manage both things single-handed.

      I liked what you mentioned about how you improved your writing skills, and as you say you are seeing the results, it surely has worked for you. Yes, writing makes you better each day, and picture reading, as you mentioned, is another way to enhance your creative writing skills – reminded me of school days when our English teacher used to give us similar assignments to read and write, seeing a picture 🙂

      It seems like you kept a stop watch too near by when you started writing this comment to match it with your speed…lol!! Mine too touch 500 words and sometimes more – perhaps that’s why they are called mini-posts in themselves, but I guess they are any day better than the few lined ones, aren’t they?

      Thanks for stopping by and adding more value to the post. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

      • Karmakar

        March 12, 2014 at 4:24 pm

        Hi Harleena…

        I am very glad that you found my comment interesting… Awesome…:)

        yes, you are absolutely write, you can NOT do blogging – commenting – eBook writing all together.

        I have started writing my eBook on 15th August 2013 and finished everything by 25th Feb 2014…

        Almost 6 months… I have totally devoted myself to my eBook. Not a single blog post in that time frame or commenting on other blogs…

        The benefits:

        1. Now I have enough content to upload in my website for next 1 year… 🙂 I just have to re-write it according to SEOPressor`s demand.

        2. I have enough time for blog commenting and doing other promotional activities without worrying about what I am going to write for my website.

        3. Learned so many NEW things in this process…:)

        Hopefully you will get the NEWS in next 2 weeks time… 🙂 🙂 🙂

        Regards,

        Karmakar

  37. Christy Garrett

    March 7, 2014 at 9:04 am

    If someone would have told me that I would be a writer when I was growing up I would have laughed at them. Writing wasn’t my strongest point growing up but I decided to give blogging a try a few years ago. I am thankful that I didn’t give up and continued writing. My writing has improved greatly since I started writing a few years ago. I have looked back at a few of my very old posts and man were they terrible.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 12, 2014 at 2:23 pm

      Hi Christy,

      I ditto your words dear friend 🙂

      I think most of us have changed our jobs or work to a great extent and finally settled with blogging or writing now. I’d never imagined I’d ever write or have a blog of my own, but here I am.

      Yes, practice makes us better each day and that’s how we improve our writing skills too – by writing a little daily. You’d be surprised to know that even meaningful comments fall under the category of writing, at least for me they do! Oh yes…don’t talk about the old posts…lol…some of them make me laugh and if given a chance, I’d love to sit and edit them 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us 🙂

  38. Maketta

    March 7, 2014 at 11:54 pm

    Hello Harleena,

    These are some excellent writing tips you mentioned. I am an avid reader. I can say from experience that it really has helped me with my writing. I believe that’s why I love blogging so much. You are right! The more you write the better you get. Practice makes perfect. Thanks for sharing these awesome tips with us!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 12, 2014 at 2:47 pm

      Hi Maketta,

      Glad you liked these tips 🙂

      Oh yes…good readers mostly make good writers too because of the amount of reading they do, and being a blogger, you have to write, so your writing skills only get better, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts 🙂

  39. Adrienne

    March 8, 2014 at 1:02 am

    Hey Harleena,

    Now those are some really great tips and I’m glad you created this category to help others in this area. I think if you’re receiving enough questions about how to be a better writer then I definitely know that you can help them. These suggestions prove just that.

    I’ll admit that I didn’t really do well in English. As I’ve mentioned many times before, I didn’t learn like all the other kids and when a teacher would start explaining verbs, nouns, adjectives, etc. I just didn’t get it.

    Even with not doing that well in English class I still ended up as a secretary in corporate America! I worked my way up to executive assistant working with the owners of the companies. You don’t get there if you can’t write good letters so I believe that the more I read and wrote the better I became. I do SO much better just doing because the way it was being explained to me was just over my head.

    The more you practice the better you become and everyone that’s blogging today will say that same thing. I look back on my earlier posts and cringe on how horrible they were. Everything just takes time so I do hope that those eager to learn will remember that.

    Great share Harleena and I’ll look forward to what you’ll be teaching us as we move forward this year.

    Have a great weekend.

    ~Adrienne

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:48 pm

      Hi Adrienne,

      Sorry for replying so late – just got time now after long and I’m glad I’m here now 🙂

      Glad you liked this new category that I mainly started on popular demand and one can see that from the comments I think how much people like it. Perhaps people can use these writing skills and enhance their work, which I know has helped me so it would definitely help them too.

      Ah…we all don’t do well always, and there are only certain subjects that we take fondly to or excel in. Like I was horrible in mathematics and physics, but the rest I enjoyed. Moreover, it’s only with time and practice that we get better even in school, where English is concerned. That’s why it’s taught right from the junior level right through. Yes, your teachers should also be good because that interest only develops with time thanks to the teacher who teaches the subject in an interesting way.

      Absolutely! One can never make out you weren’t good in English because you write so well, and if a person does that it means all the skills of speaking and reading too are in them. I agree with you there – the more you write, the better you become and this just goes on to show that. I guess writing so many letters and the posts, not to mention the newsletter, comments and everything else – just adds up to it all.

      Lol…oh yes! I’ve even given a thought of removing those old posts or redoing them up again. But then I thought, let those be a reminder of how I used to write years back and how things have only got better with time. I don’t say I’d exactly be teaching everyone because I am a forever learner myself, but yes, I’d surely be sharing what I learn along the way and hope it helps everyone.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  40. Yashraj Kakkad

    March 8, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    Hi there!

    I used to be one of the worst writer perhaps 6 months back, and today I have improved to such extent that I am chosen as the best writer of the school. And I hope that your points will add more to the glitter!

    I just wonder how do you manage to write such long posts, and even comments. I remember you said about yourself once on social media, “My comments sometimes become mini-posts” Perhaps it is because of your consistent practice. Do you have any secret for this which you wouldn’t mind sharing?

    I like to read your blog because you share some facts which I can’t find anywhere else, or you can say I can’t find them in such an awesome writing style….. And, like always, this post is something I will always remember!

    I would like to thank you for such a great post! Keep up this great job.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:50 pm

      Hi Yashraj and welcome to my blog!

      Not to worry at all because we all have gone through that phase when we weren’t as good and it’s only with time that we get better, or perhaps practice is what makes us better. I guess being a blogger, you have to keep writing a great deal, and that helps you in more ways than one, isn’t it?

      Ah…don’t ask about the length of the post or even the comments…lol…I guess once I start writing, I just can’t stop. Or perhaps those who are ‘heart writers’ won’t stop till they’ve said all that their heart wanted to say! Yes, because I don’t see the length of my posts and they often run long, people have told me that they resemble mini-posts, and that’s exactly what I mentioned on the social media networks. It’s not a tough thing to do once you get down to it, though it does take a few minutes more than a normal comment but the outcome looks good, doesn’t it? No secret at all – just write from your heart without keeping a real check on your word count.

      Glad you liked the post and my writing style, and thanks so much for your kind words of appreciation regarding my writing style. It’s friends like you who keep me inspired and motivated to carry on.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  41. Reginald

    March 9, 2014 at 1:43 am

    Hey Harleena,

    Thanks for sharing. For me, what works best is always reading more. My English is a mix of Asian + UK and thus, sometime things get ‘hard’ especially when it comes to guest posting.

    Nonetheless, I am so into Feedly and those reading apps. So, yes!

    What you had stated above are absolutely correctly. Thanks!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:51 pm

      Hi Reginald,

      I completely agree with you there! The more you read the better you become even in your writing I’d add because you are able to grasp so much and learn from the writing style of others too.

      One really can’t make out about the mixture in your English as such, don’t worry! I haven’t really noticed anything different in your guest posts too, so you are doing good!

      Honestly speaking, I haven’t really ever tried any Grammar or English sites myself, nor any apps. It’s just practice that makes you better, and of course – the more you write, the more you are able to understand your own mistakes and improvise them.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  42. Larry Frank

    March 9, 2014 at 10:01 am

    Hi Harleena,
    your guide to being a good writer is something worth re-reading, writing nice articles has been on of those my major concern, seeing the first assignment you stated about reading alot i was glad cos reading for sure brodens ones knowlege, thank for the big share.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:53 pm

      Hi Larry and welcome to my blog!

      Glad you liked my post, and yes, perhaps it’s long enough to be called a guide! 🙂

      Yes indeed, when you read more your knowledge broadens, you start understanding things better, your vocabulary gets better and you write better too! I guess if you’re a blogger and have been blogging consistently for a while now, you are bound to become a good writer.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  43. Dawn Abraham

    March 9, 2014 at 2:40 pm

    Harleena,

    Great post I always love hearing what other people share about writing. I have found many of the same things over the years that you have experienced. I would have to say writing on a regular basis and reading top notch articles blogs books etc. show us how to write while inspiring us to be better.

    My tip would be take risks, go outside the box and don’t be afraid to try new things. When we try new ways to approach something or try a funny way to explain an experience it makes our writing more interesting and you are giving yourself the opportunity to be great.

    Sure you might fall on your face a couple of times but you may also hit a home run and when you do there is nothing more satisfying.

    Thank you for the great post and the reminder that reading is the foundation for any great writer. XOXO

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:54 pm

      Welcome to my blog Dawn – good to have you over 🙂

      Sorry for the late reply – just been a little overwhelming, though I’m glad to be here now.

      You are absolutely right! Just reading anything or everything doesn’t make you better. You need to make sure you read good books, blogs, newspapers, and even magazines. Good books, offline, are a joy to read, and I wish I had the time to go through many on my reading list too.

      I loved your motivating tip for all of us. Taking risks makes you go beyond your comfort zone and try something you haven’t earlier, though very few people are really ready and willing to try out this way. But saying things in your own way by making it unique will make people stop and look at your work and that could be based on anything you write, isn’t it?

      Ah…we don’t have to fear failures because those are stepping stones to success. I think failures only make us stronger.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your pearls of wisdom with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  44. Jeevan Jacob John

    March 9, 2014 at 9:18 pm

    I certainly do write everyday – commenting and of course, my diary 🙂

    I am guilty of a lot of things you mentioned here, especially editing. I have acknowledged that in the past, and planned to change it, but I haven’t done it so far. Sure, I do edit, but not all of my posts. I need to invest some time into editing (Hopefully, this time I will be able to do that).

    I do love reading, and for the most part, I do read a lot (Although I haven’t been able to keep up this semester). I have worked out a plan (readjusted my schedule), so it should be a smooth ride from now on…hopefully it will go well (and hopefully I can finish up my reading list!).

    One of the other things I have to work on is my grammar. I do notice a few mistakes here and there, perhaps I make even more (and don’t notice it, because I don’t know, or perhaps forgot the rules of grammar).

    Anyways, thank you for the awesome tips, Harleena 🙂 Hope you are enjoying your weekend!

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:55 pm

      Hi Jeevan,

      You are absolutely right! Commenting itself is a full time writing job – in fact the amount of commenting we do, whether on our blog, or different blogs, or even write a daily journal as you mentioned, we should make seasoned writers in no time 🙂

      Editing is essential if you really want a fool-proof copy, though no matter how many times you edit, you’d always find a tiny error somewhere or the other. I always edit my posts, not once, but many times before I hit the publish button reluctantly, but that too isn’t something I am very happy about. Sometimes even after the post is published and I find a minor type, I always make sure to correct it – force of habit, though I need to still get better in it.

      I too wish I had the free time to read as much as I used to do long back, when I was in college. Now all the reading I do is of various blogs….I forget the number! Of course, not to mention he comments that people leave, which you read and reply – so all this only improves your writing skills, isn’t it?

      I agree about the grammar part, something we all need to work at, except a few exceptional writers. I guess because we have our own blogs, we can get away with a few errors if any, though we should avoid it, but one can overlook those if there are few and bloggers accept that I guess. However, with time, I think you only get better with the more writing you do.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  45. Mainak Halder

    March 11, 2014 at 1:25 am

    Harleena,

    This is a lovely post for all freelance writer and blogger. I’m a freelance writer for the past 5 years and also a blogger now, so I agree with what you said – it is very very true.

    There are many writers who just search the first page of google or I may say the first link of google SERP to find resources for their articles and just rewrite it.

    I think searching at least 20 sources for finding an information, then short-listing to the best 5 authority resources and further compiling them to a great article from a unique perspective is what makes an article or a freelance writer different.

    Thanks a lot for the nice post. I’m Tweeting it so that my blog readers also benefit from this article.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:56 pm

      Hi Mainak,

      Glad you liked the post and could relate to it 🙂

      Yes, I had the bloggers more in mind than the writers for this post because I know they ask me about writing so often on the social networks, and I hope this post helps them in more ways than one.

      Nice to know another freelance writer and blogger, and you surely have been blogging since a long time, that’s wonderful indeed. I agree with you there – the first few pages are what more writers or blogger choose, though a well researched article would go deeper into the other pages and perhaps even tap the research papers or essays, though few writers do that nowadays.

      I think you can find some different matter even from those 20 researched papers if you look carefully, unless they are totally unrelated or useless. I usually go through all the pages and pick up what is unique and relevant before I sit to write my post. Yes, it takes longer than usual but at the end of the day, you are satisfied that you did your best and offered a post full of value to your readers, isn’t it?

      Thanks for the tweet and for stopping by to share your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  46. Pawan singh

    March 11, 2014 at 10:56 am

    Very good morning today, I Got, What i was looking for ? Perhaps , you would have remember I’m in your facebook friend list and i too knocked you for this. I’m working as internet marketing since last one year although writing in english is nightmare . I have many good thing to share already taken 2 to 3 domain to start my blog but it’s english who always push me back and still i couldn’t started my blog.
    But this post encourage me to start writing.BUT STILL ONE DOUBT , PRACTICE PRACTCE AND PRACTICE MAKES MAN PERFECT.
    But how do i know that what i’m writing is grammatically right or wrong .

    May you tell me any enganging group or forum where i could get good mentor . Because sometimes for business purpose , i have write one sentence that need to be 1000% perfect , so i can put there for proofread.
    Please edit this comment , i have done some mistake.
    Thanks for this inspiring post

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 4:57 pm

      Hi Pawan,

      Good morning! Glad to hear you got what you were looking for 🙂

      Yes indeed, I remember you and I can well understand what you mean about writing in English being an uphill task. I don’t blame you because you aren’t used to writing as much, and writing skills take time to develop which happens only with practice as I’ve been saying all along.

      I think what you need is some good grammar and English site links that you can also find online besides the ones I mentioned because I know they work well, though you need to make it a daily habit of practicing how to read and write, which will only help you get better.

      Once you visit the online sites, you’d also find writing exercises on many of them with questions and answers. Don’t see the answers, and try doing up the questions to test yourself. Later recheck with the answer to know if what you thought was right or wrong. It’s very similar to the grammar books you get in schools with writing exercises on grammar – you could even try out those.

      I wouldn’t know of any such forum that I’d like to suggest, because in such forums or groups many people might reply to your question, which might confuse you further as to what’s wrong or right as each might have their own different answer. The best way is to learn it on your own. It takes time perhaps, but what you learn will be a sure thing you won’t forget.

      Thanks for stopping by, and don’t worry about your little mistakes – they are all acceptable on this blog 🙂

  47. Nitin Pandey

    March 13, 2014 at 12:17 am

    Hi,

    I am new in this blogging world. Just started my blog about quotes and images. I try to write good. But when it come to share I think it is not complete and don’t find confidence to share in blog.
    I will follow these tips. Can you suggest me something extra?

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 5:00 pm

      Hi Nitin,

      Welcome to the blogosphere then 🙂

      Nice to learn more about your blog about quotes and images, and I guess you don’t have to write all that much then. If you feel there is something lacking and you aren’t confident about sharing your blog, why don’t you work on it? Only with practice will you get better, isn’t it?

      Something extra would be to go ahead and write more, so that you become confident about yourself and your blog.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  48. Tanisha

    March 13, 2014 at 8:29 pm

    Hi Harleena
    First thanks for this informative article. We all know that good writing skills is very necessary for any bloggers. i think it will help to all bloggers for improve their writing skills.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 23, 2014 at 5:05 pm

      Hi Tanisha,

      You are most welcome, and I’m glad you liked this post as well 🙂

      Yes indeed, you need good writing skills if you are a blogger or freelance writer, and I hope these skills help everyone. As I have repeated in many of the comments above, you will become a better writer or blogger only when you keep writing more – so keep at it!

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  49. Swadhin Agrawal

    March 28, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    Hi Harleena Ma’am,

    This post is like a great guide to better writing have read it twice already and saved it to my pocket account for offline reading. it always reminds me of what to do and what not if I wanted to excel as a writer reading more blogs just like yours not only inspires but also helps me to analyze writing style trends in content writing etc . thank you for a great post and one more thing I read your portfolio blog too to get inspired by your writing.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      March 31, 2014 at 9:36 am

      Welcome to the blog Swadhin!

      Glad you liked the post and could relate to it 🙂

      Yes indeed, there’s a lot you can learn about ways to improve your writing skills, and any blog you read is a source of learning for you – you just need time and a positive mindset, isn’t it?

      Ah…the portfolio blog was the first thing I created before I started this blog – that helps to showcase your work, if need be.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  50. Kenna

    April 14, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    This post really touch me. I am one those victim who find it hard to write some times, but that was back then until I develop the habit to do the right thing. Every word you said over there is exactly what I needed. It’s now I follow the steps on how to improve better. Thanks for the lovely post 🙂

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      April 19, 2014 at 9:16 am

      Welcome to my blog Kenna!

      Glad you could relate with this post on how to improve your writing skills 🙂

      You are not the only one who has problems in writing, as you can see from the many comments on this post. But if you are committed and determined, anything and everything is possible. Hope this post helped you in more ways than one 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with .

      BTW – If possible, get a Gravatar so that we know who we are talking to – just a friendly suggestion 🙂

  51. Ntando

    April 19, 2014 at 12:13 am

    Interesting post Harleena! I loved the inspiring quotes in between and I love breaking the rules of writing, hehehehe!! Thank you for all the advice and writing tips.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      April 19, 2014 at 9:33 am

      Hi Ntando,

      Ah…I love quotes and you’d find them in most of my posts. I think they add more to the post, don’t they? Yes, don’t we all love breaking rules, whether we are writing or otherwise too 😉

      Thanks for stopping by, and glad you liked the post 🙂

  52. Srimanta Ghosh

    April 19, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    Writing content for blogs, its like giving fresh water on tree. That why, to posting fresh and quality content, we have improve our writing skills. Madam, your article has some great and useful information to improve writing skills.

    Thanks for sharing these tips.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      April 20, 2014 at 11:10 am

      Hi Srimanta,

      Absolutely! Writing fresh content that our readers like and can relate to is essential, for which we need to improve our writing skills, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by, and I’m glad you liked the post too 🙂

  53. Charmie

    April 23, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    Today morning I tweeted that “PEOPLE DON’T READ FOR LOGICAL REASONS, BUT READ FOR EMOTIONAL REASONS” and got some really interesting insights regarding the same. Writing is something which can be both logical as well as emotional depending upon how far you are able to indulge your reader into your stuff. They must believe your writing as their own belongings and then and only than it is possible.
    Thank you so much for adding upto my knowledge.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      April 23, 2014 at 8:13 pm

      Hi Charmie,

      Sounds like a nice tweet and that would certainly get a lot of response too 🙂

      Yes, the same is the case with writing, and it’s said if a written work can stir you or you take action after reading a piece, it means your work had a positive impact. I guess if you can relate to your readers and give them what they are looking for, you are doing a great job. You need to move and inspire them through your work and that is what matters most, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  54. Rajesh

    May 1, 2014 at 9:46 pm

    Hi Harleena Singh, my writing skills also very week. When i write an article to publish i feel that it won’t be a good article when compare to others. Anyways nice tips for writing skills.
    Thank you.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      September 26, 2014 at 2:38 pm

      Hi Rajesh,

      Sorry for the late reply, I seemed to have missed out on a few pending comments here 🙂

      Don’t worry about that because we all have such feelings when we start. You just need to gain more confidence, and that happens when you read and write more – nothing works better.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  55. Suraj singh

    June 27, 2014 at 4:51 pm

    Hi Harleena, you have shared the exact problem that generally a newbie faces while writing any post. Even after 8 months of writing i came to know some important things after writing your article like writing in some emotional manner or keeping the visitor’s point of view in mind. I was still writting like just a normal non-interacting article. But finally i learned it. Thanks to You for this post 😛

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      September 26, 2014 at 2:43 pm

      Hi Suraj,

      Sorry for the late reply – seem to have missed a few replies 🙂

      Yes indeed, having gone through the phase myself, I can well relate to what all newbies face, and I am glad you could relate to it too.

      Always write FOR your readers and keep them in mind, that always works, and you can get the feedback of your readers through various ways to know what kind of posts they are looking for, what would help them etc. and if you tread that path, you’d always do well.

      Glad this post could help you in some ways, and thanks for stopping by 🙂

  56. Anna Khan

    September 26, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    These are very nice tips for me.

    I am struggling with my grammar all the time.English is not my first language and I am trying to learn it. I am reading a lot of books for grammar. Reading blog posts to get idea how to do it.
    I will surely check the links you have provided to improve grammar.
    Thank you for a great post.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      September 26, 2014 at 3:00 pm

      Welcome to the blog Anna!

      Perhaps you had come earlier too, but the login name you used was different from what you have on your blog, so I changed that for you – you see Google notices these small things 🙂

      Nevertheless, I know you had mentioned about this on my interview at Lorraine’s blog, and there is nothing better that works other than read and writing. Read a lot of grammar sites and they usually have practice sheets also, so you can always do that up. One thing that’s always worked for me is writing and writing a LOT. Even comments count there…lol…as you can see, I am a very wordy person, so any kind of writing you can do, will make you better.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  57. andleeb

    September 26, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    My name is Andleeb. Yes I also read your post about prayers ( long ago I guess 🙂 )
    Yes I have these problems that I mention almost every where :'( just to seek some advice.
    In gmail, I just have my nick name… Now a days I am thinking to change but I have to see first how I can do that ….

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      September 26, 2014 at 6:24 pm

      Alright then, I take your word for it, though you must write with that same name on your blog so that people take you as the author of your posts, and not Anna – who is that then? And if not that, have an ‘About’ page on your blog, which clarifies your real name, so that people know.

      Yes, I remember your comment, though because of this very reason I didn’t approve your site link, which I did now, as I saw you on Lorraine’s blog and a few other places too. You can create a new Gmail account with your name, and use a capital letter like Andleeb, which looks better.

      Thanks once again 🙂

  58. Rahul Krishnan

    October 2, 2014 at 11:56 pm

    Informative post, Mam. You are gifted with fantastic writing skill. I have to ask you Mam, whether this skill is intrinsic or made by practice? I wonder every time reading your posts.
    I had an above mentioned mistake of writing longer sentences. I think it is decreased now. Thank you so much Mam. You have no wonder in hearing praises continuously. But as far as I am concerned, it is only you, the woman with magical words do wonder.
    All the four tips are helpful. Will adapt it in my writing soon.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 3, 2014 at 12:07 am

      Welcome to my blog Rahul!

      Thank you for your kind words of appreciation 🙂

      I think a little of both, to answer your question as my Mom wrote well, and so does my sister and now my father too, though all this isn’t necessarily a reason I would add. I think practice makes a person perfect, so the more you read and write, the better you become.

      Many bloggers tend to write long sentences as they get too busy writing or forget to cut them short, in their flow. We need to remember that people online have short attention spans, so writing a paragraph of a 1-3 lines is more than enough. I am glad you are already doing well in this regard and I hope the other tips help you too.

      Thanks for stopping by and for your warm words as well. 🙂

      BTW – Work a little on your picture shared here (profile image) as it’s very dark and hardly visible, though the one used on your blog is good, so perhaps using the same Gravatar might help – just a friendly suggestion 🙂

  59. Rahul Krishnan

    October 3, 2014 at 1:21 am

    Never expected such a quick reply from you, Mam. Thank you.
    I wasn’t written anything in my blog for months due to the hectic shedule. Sometimes it is difficult to write regularly as a student.
    Anyway I will write something daily to improve my writing.
    Sorry for the imconvenience Mam. It occured with an error while uploading the pic (I did it through mobile). Will correct it soon.
    Thank you so much to spend some moments from your precious time to visit my blog.

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 3, 2014 at 3:24 am

      You are most welcome, and good to see you join the blog community as well 🙂

      Yes, I can understand that, and it’s nice to see so many youngsters studying and blogging alongside – keep going! I think if you can write a little daily, even if it’s just 400-500 words, it would help. Even blog comments, if you comment long, are pieces of writing.

      Do that once you are on your computer because having a proper image or profile picture is required at the community and here too 🙂

      Thanks once again 🙂

  60. Profile photo of Swadhin Agrawal

    Swadhin Agrawal

    October 5, 2014 at 12:10 am

    Hello Harleena madam,
    I am so much lucky today. I had read this post may be a couple of months back but couldn’t make out where. I searched all my pocket account but couldn’t find it(Now I have found it as I now know the tag I had allotted to it).

    Needless to say how much this post is valuable for me at this exact point of time. Well I was searching for the link that you have given at the top of the page for the 50 resources. Hope it will help to polish up my skills. Tonight I am going to read every post under this category. YAYYY

    • Profile photo of Harleena Singh

      Harleena Singh

      October 5, 2014 at 5:40 pm

      Hi Swadhin,

      Sorry about that, though there is a niche on ‘Writing’ that I had created sometimes back, so all writing related posts come under that. However, I can only write on them as and when their turn comes, which happens once a month perhaps, if not earlier. Good you found it at last – Pocket is good there 🙂

      I can well understand why you say that, especially now that you tread this path yourself. I am sure you will find lots of value in the links provided in the post, and a few others shared on this niche as well. Hope you like all that you read 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us 🙂

  61. Profile photo of Vishnu Verma

    Vishnu Verma

    October 6, 2014 at 11:41 pm

    Hey Harleena,

    As you’ve prescribed me, I came here and read this post. And I must, I’ve learned many new things.
    Yeah, I’m reading a lot these day, in fact most of the time I keep myself occupied in reading only and I love reading so it’s becoming easier for me 🙂

    to writing, I’ve to say that I’m not that efficient in that, as I write when it’s necessary and just in my free time and I know I’ve to work on it!
    And you’ve mentioned about programs and confrences on writing, and if you know about them please let me know.

    You have a major role in my improved writing skills Harleena, I’ve learnt from you how to comment or I would say that you’ve shown me that “this s called a real comment.” This improved my witting skills a lot.

    Thanks for everything 🙂

  62. yogesh

    October 8, 2014 at 4:24 pm

    Hello Harleena mam,
    really i found here a Great advice and thanks for giving this.
    i wonder many times that how you write such a great and long comments in other blogs. it rare that i am writing any blog post and comments and you are not there 🙂
    you are real commenting star and again thanks for sharing valuable things like this one hats off!!

  63. Profile photo of Abrar Mohi Shafee

    Abrar Mohi Shafee

    December 14, 2014 at 1:07 am

    Hello Harleena,

    I think, grammar has a great deal with content. Without proper use of grammar, a writing might lose its value.

    I first came to realize when I proofread one of my post through Grammarly. After getting pointed the errors, I felt really shame and tensed because the errors might have got readers into trouble.

    From then, I double check every single post for grammars.

  64. Profile photo of Rahul Krishnan

    Rahul Krishnan

    January 31, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Hi Harleena Mam,
    It is now I deeply read this post.
    Yeah, as a blogger, we have to improve our writing. Conscious efforts do wonder.
    Hey Mam, why did you say that. No doubt, you are a superb writer.
    Hardwork is tgevkey to success as you said.
    Reading improves our writing a lot. I am happy to say I am an avid reader. The first book I had read that “Ramayana Stories for Children”, if my memory is right. I too get this habit from my Mom. Now I love Indian English fictions very much. Like the books written by Chetan Bhagath, Ravinder Singh, Preety Shenoy etc.
    There is saying that “we can achieve success in 3 ways
    1. Practice
    2. Practice and
    3. Practice”
    This emphasizes tge significance of practice. I juat started to bring a paper and pen to wherever I go. My blog is new. So didn’t implement the idea of re-writing old posts. But will do it.
    Online workshops are such good. But I heard that that make good and bad writers to average ones.
    Writing everyday is important, isn’t it Mam?
    I also started to write everyday at leasrlt 4-5 comments.
    Grammar mistakes and typos are deadly disasters in writing. As you said, there are so many online proof reading tools available. I too am using MS-Word.
    Hey Mam, thank you so much for making me understand the importance of short paragraphs.
    Editing is a time consuming process for me. Because when I try to edit soon after conpletion, I feel everything is right. But if I try to proofread after a day, somethings have to be corrected.
    Page layout, font size, font style and finally design are very relevant. Because it decides readability of a content.
    Thank you so much for the post Mam.
    Regards,
    Rahul

  65. Neetika Rao Saksena

    February 23, 2015 at 7:35 am

    Hi Harleena,

    Great post as always. I think the post pretty much sums up all the “to-dos” to be a writer. I have found that discipline is the most important factor when it comes to writing. I don’t write everyday, but I write 4-5 times a week and over time, I have managed to find out what voice works for me and what doesn’t. I haven’t quite narrowed it down to the exact kind of voice which will work for me, but I pretty much rely on my gut instinct on what feels right and what doesn’t. Experimentation has helped me a lot to understand more about myself as a person and what I stand for.
    Reading has also helped a lot. In fact, if there are long periods of time where I don’t read, I find my writing to be a bit stuck.
    As for editing, I have realized that editing is mostly rewriting. I am working on a book and I have edited it so much that it doesn’t look like the original one at all. One important editing trick that I learnt was “Show. Don’t tell.” This essentially means that if one is writing fiction(like me), they should make the reader arrive at the conclusions that they are trying to drive. This is done by showcasing dialogues more than being the voice of the protagonist.

    Thanks for the excellent post, Harleena.

  66. Harshita

    June 26, 2015 at 11:34 am

    This was another amazing post! I could feel as if you were sitting next to me and explaining everything. Every little things is explained so well. Cheers to your wonderful writing skills.
    Hope you have a great day
    xx

  67. Cristina Rogers

    March 16, 2016 at 12:40 pm

    Great stuff you shared for your readers to make their writing skills better and improved, it will be really beneficial to them. Nowadays there are various writers present online but their skills are not appropriate for writers work.

  68. Ravinder Dande

    April 3, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Hi Harleena,

    Improving writing is possible when one follow whatever you mentioned because this are a steps that is essential for improving skill. I have had same problem but as i went on writing whatever i think on paper skill improved.

  69. SiddharthaRatna

    October 24, 2016 at 8:18 pm

    Hi Harleena Singh
    what an article, it’s really simply superb, yes we will definitely use the tips & suggestions which were provided by you in this article and i m also a blog-writer and new to this field.
    since from last 2 month, I waited for such a simple tips so finally io got those through you blog I would like to wish you ” Always Be Happy”.
    Thank you
    Thanks Once Again




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How To Improve Your Writing Skills in Four Ways

by Harleena Singh time to read: 9 min