- Books, Literature, and Writing
Online Writing Tips: Relevant And Interesting
The Hot Focus
A wonderful boss of mine from days gone by used to tell us that if a piece of writing didn’t have a hot focus to set the reader on fire, it wasn’t worth a thing! Well, maybe that is absolutely essential for a piece of writing that is done with selling in mind. When it comes to information and entertainment, it might just be okay to tone that down a bit. However, writing that has a focus is better at achieving what it wants achieved than writing that doesn’t.
What is this hot focus anyway? It’s the central thought in any piece of writing you are doing. Here, too, keep it simple. If you have too many ideas vying for pride of place, you’ll end up with a crazy mess. Try and tackle one thought in each piece of writing you do and suddenly you find that everything works its way around it and towards it. Once that happens, you’re on a good wicket! When you cut out all the fizz and the fluff and stick to what is really important, that’s what is going to be visible to the reader too.
How do you judge if your online freelance writing has a focus? Here’s a little test you can do. After you’ve written your article or chapter or report, try and see if you can sum up everything you’ve written in one single sentence. Then see if that sentence makes sense to the reader and is compelling enough to hold his attention. If it is, you’re bang on! Of course, you can stand this on its head and work the other way around too. Decide on what it is you want to say and then go on to how you are going to it. So you get the hot focus first and then build your body of words around it. It works, especially if you are looking at how to make money online. Does that sound too terribly simplistic? But it works, you know. Very often, it’s the simple ideas that do!
The Aha Factor
Well, all this stuff about keeping it simple probably gives you the idea somewhere that the outcome could be something that’s boring. Yes, that is a problem. So once you’ve got the hot focus of what you have to say, see if you can give the reader just a little bit of something that makes him sit up, opening his eyes a bit wider. Just a wee bit is enough to start with. It doesn’t have to scream, it doesn’t need to have ‘shock value’. It just needs to have him saying ‘Aha!’. It doesn’t have to be a great big ‘aha’ every time. Even a teeny-weeny one will mean that the chances of him reading through your online writing increases tremendously.
The Aha factor does not mean that you don’t write unless you have something new and exciting to say. All it means is that whatever you say should not sound trite and with an ‘I’ve heard it before’ kind of feel to it. It just means that whatever you have to say is said a little bit differently, a little bit more creatively so that what you have to say gets the reader’s attention. It means your writing gets read and that is what ultimately matters. If your reader were to say, ‘Hey, I never quite thought of it like that before!’……..then your writing has done a real good job!