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How To Be Clear In Your Writing, or How To Write Clearly

Updated on August 2, 2017

1. Start with an outline

Basics first. An outline is the best way to organize your thoughts. You are going to need is a topic. Ask yourself, what are you writing about, and who is it for? These questions will narrow down your thoughts and you'll know how you are going to write and who you are writing it for.

Now that you know your topic, write down three to four things about that topic. These three to four things will be the supporting details to back up what you are writing on this topic about. Your outline may look roughly like this:

Paragraph 1 [Topic sentence]. [First supporting detail sentence]. [Second supporting detail sentence]. [Third supporting detail sentence]. [More supporting detail sentences.]

..

Paragraph 2 [First supporting sentence]. [Fact #1 about supporting sentence]. [Fact #2 about supporting sentence]

..

Paragraph 3 [Second supporting sentence]. [Fact #1 about supporting sentence]. [Fact #2 about supporting sentence]……

Conclusion Paragraph

But of course, you don’t necessarily have to write in this structure (because I believe you are not that obsequious). As long as you have the flow and a conclusion to sum up your main points in your text, people will understand what you are writing.

2. Write more and read more


You may not know how to write clearly because you are inexperienced in writing. That's why you struggle to express yourself. So I suggest writing every single day. Do not expect every writing to be a 100% masterpiece, because, to be honest, most writings are amateurish today. Look at social media and you'll get it. But by practicing the skill day by day, and reading novels, newspapers and magazines, you can become a master of expressing your thoughts.

Writing should be a fully intimate activity. Put your desk in the corner of the room, and eliminate all possible distractions, from phones to televisions. Stephen King advises, "Write with the door closed; rewrite with the door open." Read more about what King has to say about writing here: http://www.businessinsider.com/stephen-king-on-how-to-write-2014-8/?IR=T&r=SG/#1-stop-watching-television-instead-read-as-much-as-possible-1

3. Be smart


Generally, all writers have trouble with phrasing. Writers who aren't struggling to find the right words, are those who just write down the first thing that comes into their heads, which is rarely good.

You need to revise and revise and revise. Use a dictionary and a thesaurus. Make lists of words. Take breaks, let your mind refresh, and try again.

Often I find myself rewriting entire sentences so I don't have static or dull prose that is structured noun verb noun or a series of she, she, she.

The use of a highlighter to separate thought, emotion, description, dialogue and action is very helpful. If your text is all in one color, that's not good. Have a good balance and a sentence that combines more than one color.

When writing, if the words won't come, use a zzz and keep going. You can do your research after that and insert the relevant phrase as needed.

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