August Writing Prompts

If you're looking for tips on how to make the most of your writing prompts, please read Mia Botha's post How To Use Writing Prompts

Remember that you can send an email to news@writerswrite.co.za with the words DAILY PROMPT in the subject line. We will add you to the mailing list and you will receive a daily prompt.   

If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. Please email news@writerswrite.co.za for more details.

 by Mia Botha

If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

  1. What Writers Can Learn From The Coolest Podcasts On The Web
  2. World-Building For Every Genre: The Ultimate Setting Checklist
  3. What Fantasy Writers Can Teach Us About Setting

~~~

    Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

    Write Your Novel In A Year - Week 30: The 30 Minute Challenge


    Welcome to week 30 of Anthony's series that aims to help you write a novel in a year. Read last week's post here

    Goal setting
    1. Do as many of the 30 minute challenges as possible
    Breaking it down

    Taking on the challenge
    Here in South Africa, we have a few public holidays coming up. I’ve decided to shake up my writing routine. I’ve come up with a fun challenge for Week 30 of writing a novel in a year. Why not take the challenge?

    This week, write for 30 minutes a day or write 300 words a day – whichever comes first. Write without distraction, pausing, or censoring your writing. Keep that hand moving!  You can make this a challenge in your writing group – or set a date with another writing friend to meet at a coffee shop.

    Take 30 minutes to plan or outline a scene in your novel. Aim for 3 scenes a day.  I call this ‘the breakfast, lunch, and dinner’ approach. Plan one scene in the morning, one in the afternoon, and one in the evening.  Don’t worry if the scenes are not in sequence.

    List 30 things about a character in your story. For example, ‘Jena passed out on her first photo shoot’, ‘Matt still keeps photos of his first wife in a file on his MacBook.’  When you’re done, circle the most interesting and cross out those that are boring.
    Speedy synopsis
    Without looking at your longer, detailed synopsis, open a new document on your computer – or tear a couple of pages from an exam pad. Now re-write a synopsis of your book.  Set yourself a limit of 30 minutes.

    When you don’t have the luxury of time, you won’t dawdle. You’ll get down only the main points of your novel. You’ll have to find short thumbnails for your characters.

    Focus on:

    • inciting incident
    • 3 major plot points
    • climax

    If you’re already satisfied with your synopsis, you can try writing the blurb for the back of your novel. How will you seduce the reader into buying the book? How will you set up the main ‘hook’ of your story? Set a 30-minute time limit.

    Get inspired, get sorted, and get reading
    In her book, The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron advises we write out affirmations - positive statements that will motivate us in our journey to embracing our craft or rediscovering our creativity.

    So another great idea is to write out writing affirmations on index cards or Post-It notes – keep them in your wallet, or stick them up on the fridge. Write out as many as you can in 30 minutes.

    You can also spend a quick 30 minutes on tidying up your study or writing space.  Get organised – file or shred papers you don’t need, make sure you’re working on the right version of a file, sharpen some pencils and, most important, do a backup of your files. 

    And your final 30 minute challenge: do 30 minutes of research on your novel.  Take this time to set up a call or interview with a subject matter expert or do some surfing on the Net.
    Timelock — 30 minutes

    Write whenever you have 30 minutes to spare.

    5 Quick Hacks
    1. Get 30 minutes extra sleep or exercise – whichever most restores your soul.
    2. Read the first 30 pages of a new novel. Write down how you think it will end. Or read the last 30 pages – and write down how you think it started.
    3. Write a summary of your book that can be read in 30 seconds.
    4. Come up with some other 30-minute challenges – and post your challenge on social media.
    5. Drive in your car (or take a bus or train) for 30 minutes. Where do you land up? Write about this place or event.
    Pin it, quote it, believe it:

    ‘For disappearing acts, it’s hard to beat what happens to the eight hours supposedly left after eight hours of sleep and eight of work.’ — Doug Larson

    Look out for next week’s instalment of Write Your Novel In A Year!

     by Anthony Ehlers

    If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. 

    If you enjoyed this post, read:

    ~~~

        Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

        Why You Should Care About Readability Statistics


        Our motto at Writers Write is: 'Write to communicate.' The best way to do this is to learn to write in plain language. 

        We need to learn how to say difficult things in the simplest language. If we do this, we are able to reach a larger audience. This is true for business writing, blogging, and creative writing.

        Running readability statistics is an excellent way to test if you are writing in plain language. You will find a link to a free online readability calculator at the end of this post.

        Creative Writing
        From Analysing Agatha – How to become the best-selling novelist of all time

        "In Fiction Writer’s Brainstormer, James V. Smith explains exactly how the best-selling authors succeed. After studying authors like Stephen King, John Grisham, Danielle Steele, and Elmore Leonard, he came up with this as an ideal writing standard (if you want to sell more books).

        Once you are finished writing your novel, run readability statistics on the entire manuscript. You should have (on average):

        1. four characters per word
        2. a passive voice score of less than 5%
        3. at least an 80% readability score on the Flesch-Kincaid scale
        4. no higher than a 5th grade readability level on the Flesch-Kincaid scale (This does not mean a fifth grader would understand it. It means you are writing in the active voice, using understandable words.)"
        Business Writing
        Business writers need to watch readability levels. Research shows people respond to shorter emails written with a Grade 3 level on your readability statistics. 

        We achieve these statistics by using short sentences and easily understood words. We need to avoid texting language, and we should use proper spelling, punctuation, and grammar. We also have to minimise our use of the passive voice. [Read The Passive Voice Explained - Plus An Infographic]
        Blogging

        'If your sentences go on forever, if you use out-dated words, and if you always write in the passive voice, I will leave and never come back. You need to write simply to convey complex ideas. Avoid overused and unnecessary modifiers and qualifiers. I think there is a place for adjectives and adverbs on blogs, but they must add to the piece and not distract me.

        Tip: Check your readability statistics before you post. If they are too low and your passive content is too high, rewrite your blog so that people will enjoy reading it.'
        If you want to communicate in business, attract more followers to your blog, or write more readable books, I recommend learning how to use readability tools.  

        Click on this image to use this free online readability calculator.

        On our creative course, Writers Write, we teach you exactly how to do this. If you are interested in learning how to improve your business writing skills, join us for The Plain Language Programme

         by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Pinterest,  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Google+,  LinkedIn, and  Twitter.

        If you enjoyed this article, read these posts:

        1. Between Friends: Writing Advice From Hemingway To Fitzgerald
        2. 25 Email Etiquette Tips For Professional People
        3. What Is A Style Guide And Why Do I Need One?
        © Amanda Patterson

        ~~~

        Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

        August 2016 - In Writing

        Course

        Description

        July

        August  

        September

        October

        Writers Write

        How to write a book

        2,9,16,23

        15-18

        5-8

        1,8,15,22

        The Plain Language Programme

        Advanced business writing

        12-13

         

        13-14

        11-12

        Blogging and Social Media Course

        Write for the web

         

        23-24

         

        25-26

        Short Cuts

        How to write a short story

        31

         

        25

         

        kids etc.

        How to write for children

         

        21

         

        30


        Email news@writerswrite.co.za for more information.

        Join us on social media:

        Facebook Twitter Pinterest Writers Write on Google 

        ~~~

        Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

        Are You Serious About Blogging?

        Welcome to #SocialMediaMonday at Writers Write. We try to post an article about blogging and social media every Monday. 

        This week, we want to share this useful infographic from Copyblogger about business blogging trends. We believe that blogging regularly with a plan is important. [Read 27 Blogging Tips To Grow Your Business]

        Are you following these trends?

        Source: Copyblogger

        If you enjoyed this post, read
        1. The 9 Essential Social Media Platforms
        2. The 18 Responses You Need For Content To Go Viral
        3. A Really Useful Blog Post Template
        ~~~

        Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

        Write Your Novel In A Year - Week 29: 3 Things To Remember About Dialogue


        Welcome to week 29 of Anthony's series that aims to help you write a novel in a year. Read last week's post here 

        Goal setting
        1. Continue writing the scenes or chapters of your novel.
        Breaking it down

        Dialogue is about character
        When characters speak, readers listen. In fact, they probably pay more attention to dialogue than narrative. It’s a way for them to get information about the characters in your novel.

        The other day, a friend of mine made some off-hand comment about photographers. ‘Photographers are always seeing the deeper meaning – it’s never just a picture of a cup of coffee.’

        This got me thinking about Jenna, my main character. She is a photographer. Obsessed with getting the perfect shot to tell the perfect story. How does this inform her dialogue? She can be quite critical – probing, incisive, intelligent.

        Here’s another example. For my antagonist, Monty, finding his speech patterns was a bit easier. He is a dreamer. So his dialogue is always about the future – about wish fulfilment. He very seldom tells the truth – he reinvents the past and the future is always ‘make believe’.  Knowing this about him has really helped me with his dialogue.
        Dialogue is about moving the story forward – or back.
        Readers are also looking to dialogue to give them information about the story or plot. They get to know this through a character’s intentions and decisions – what are they going to do next in the story? That’s why stating these decisions in dialogue is a great idea – they register with the reader. For example: ‘We’ll go to the police first thing in the morning.’ ‘Let’s ask my father for help – he’ll know what to do.’ ‘We have to stop him before he takes this too far.’

        Dialogue is a great way to avoid using long passages of back story. In my novel, it’s important to introduce some information about a holiday Matt and Jenna took in the past.

        Instead of writing it as a flashback, I have the two lovers reminiscing about the holiday in dialogue. I also have other characters speak about this holiday in the story.

        By using snippets of the information about the holiday in dialogue, I’m not forced to reveal the whole truth about what happened on the holiday – only through the memories of my characters.

        Dialogues is about contrasting words with actions
        The reader is also looking for the promises one character makes to another character – and to see if they keep those promises. Do we believe what the character is saying? Do we trust them?

        In my novel, Matt, Jenna’s boyfriend, is always making promises that he never seems to keep.

        This gives the reader a heightened awareness of the ‘fault lines’ in the relationship between Matt and Jenna. I want them to ask: Why does she believe these promises?  The contrast between a character’s actions and their words is very often what creates tension in a story.

        One of elements I love about writing my novel is finding the voices of my characters – I start to see them in my mind, the story becomes kinetic, and I’m able to move the story forward.
        Timelock — 2.5 to 5 hours

        Write for half an hour or an hour a day on your scenes or chapters.

        5 Quick Hacks
        1. Download some movie scripts and read some published plays. Observe how dialogue moves the story forward.
        2. Act out or speak aloud the dialogue in your novel.  Write out a scene as a dialogue-only script and ask a friend to play one of the ‘parts’. How does it sound?
        3. Write some Facebook or Twitter posts for your characters. Does it capture the ‘personality’ of your character?
        4. Take a flashback (if you have one) and re-write it as a dialogue in a current scene.
        5. Imagine your character has lost their voice. How would they express themselves in body language?
        Pin it, quote it, believe it:

        ‘Go ahead, make my day!’ — Dirty Harry

        Look out for next week’s instalment of Write Your Novel In A Year!

         by Anthony Ehlers

        If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. 

        If you enjoyed this post, read:

            ~~~

            Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

            Between Friends: Writing Advice From Hemingway To Fitzgerald

            To celebrate the anniversary of Ernest Hemingway's birthday (he was born 21 July 1899, and died  2 July 1961) we found this letter on Letters of Note: Forget your personal tragedy

            In May 1934, after the publication of Tender Is the NightF. Scott Fitzgerald wrote to his friend, Ernest Hemingway, and asked for his opinion on the book. The couple in the novel, Dick and Nicole Diver, were based on Gerald and Sara Murphy who were mutual acquaintances of both men.
            Hemingway's reply contains plenty of advice for any writer. It includes:
            1. Don't make characters do what they would not do.
            2. Stop worrying about what people think.
            3. Listen to advice.
            4. Leave out the 'unnecessary' parts that do not serve the story.
            5. Don't try to write a deliberate masterpiece. Write the truest story you can write.
            6. Use your pain. 
            7. Avoid relationships with people who make less of your writing.
            8. Good writers always have another good book inside them.
            9. Make time for your friends.

            But Hemingway says more than this, and he says it better. Read the letter below. (Note: The letter is as Hemingway wrote it, including the spelling errors.) 

            Key West
            28 May 1934

            Dear Scott:

            I liked it and I didn't. It started off with that marvelous description of Sara and Gerald (goddamn it Dos took it with him so I can't refer to it. So if I make any mistakes—). Then you started fooling with them, making them come from things they didn't come from, changing them into other people and you can't do that, Scott. If you take real people and write about them you cannot give them other parents than they have (they are made by their parents and what happens to them) you cannot make them do anything they would not do. You can take you or me or Zelda or Pauline or Hadley or Sara or Gerald but you have to keep them the same and you can only make them do what they would do. You can't make one be another. Invention is the finest thing but you cannot invent anything that would not actually happen. 

            That is what we are supposed to do when we are at our best—make it all up—but make it up so truly that later it will happen that way. 

            Goddamn it you took liberties with peoples' pasts and futures that produced not people but damned marvellously faked case histories. You, who can write better than anybody can, who are so lousy with talent that you have to—the hell with it. Scott for gods sake write and write truly no matter who or what it hurts but do not make these silly compromises. You could write a fine book about Gerald and Sara for instance if you knew enough about them and they would not have any feeling, except passing, if it were true. 

            There were wonderful places and nobody else nor none of the boys can write a good one half as good reading as one that doesn't come out by you, but you cheated too damned much in this one. And you don't need to. 

            In the first place I've always claimed that you can't think. All right, we'll admit you can think. But say you couldn't think; then you ought to write, invent, out of what you know and keep the people's antecedants straight. Second place, a long time ago you stopped listening except to the answers to your own questions. You had good stuff in too that it didn't need. That's what dries a writer up (we all dry up. That's no insult to you in person) not listening. That is where it all comes from. Seeing, listening. You see well enough. But you stop listening. 

            It's a lot better than I say. But it's not as good as you can do. 

            You can study Clausewitz in the field and economics and psychology and nothing else will do you any bloody good once you are writing. We are like lousy damned acrobats but we make some mighty fine jumps, bo, and they have all these other acrobats that won't jump. 

            For Christ sake write and don't worry about what the boys will say nor whether it will be a masterpiece nor what. I write one page of masterpiece to ninety one pages of shit. I try to put the shit in the wastebasket. You feel you have to publish crap to make money to live and let live. All write but if you write enough and as well as you can there will be the same amount of masterpiece material (as we say at Yale). You can't think well enough to sit down and write a deliberate masterpiece and if you could get rid of Seldes and those guys that nearly ruined you and turn them out as well as you can and let the spectators yell when it is good and hoot when it is not you would be all right. 

            Forget your personal tragedy. We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt use it—don't cheat with it. Be as faithful to it as a scientist—but don't think anything is of any importance because it happens to you or anyone belonging to you. 

            About this time I wouldn't blame you if you gave me a burst. Jesus it's marvellous to tell other people how to write, live, die etc.

            I'd like to see you and talk about things with you sober. You were so damned stinking in N.Y. we didn't get anywhere. You see, Bo, you're not a tragic character. Neither am I. All we are is writers and what we should do is write. Of all people on earth you needed discipline in your work and instead you marry someone who is jealous of your work, wants to compete with you and ruins you. It's not as simple as that and I thought Zelda was crazy the first time I met her and you complicated it even more by being in love with her and, of course you're a rummy. But you're no more of a rummy than Joyce is and most good writers are. But Scott, good writers always come back. Always. You are twice as good now as you were at the time you think you were so marvellous. You know I never thought so much of Gatsby at the time. You can write twice as well now as you ever could. All you need to do is write truly and not care about what the fate of it is. 

            Go on and write. 

            Anyway I'm damned fond of you and I'd like to have a chance to talk sometimes. We had good times talking. Remember that guy we went out to see dying in Neuilly? He was down here this winter. Damned nice guy Canby Chambers. Saw a lot of Dos. He's in good shape now and he was plenty sick this time last year. How is Scotty and Zelda? Pauline sends her love. We're all fine. She's going up to Piggott for a couple of weeks with Patrick. Then bring Bumby back. We have a fine boat. Am going good on a very long story. Hard one to write. 

            Always your friend

            Ernest

            [Written on envelope: What about The Sun also and the movies? Any chance? I dint put in about the good parts. You know how good they are. You're write about the book of stories. I wanted to hold it for more. That last one I had in Cosmopolitan would have made it.]

            Ernest Hemingway and F.Scott Fitzgerald met in Paris in 1925 (Source)



             by Amanda Patterson.  Follow her on  Pinterest,  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Google+,  LinkedIn, and  Twitter.

            ~~~

            Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

            If you enjoyed this post, read these:

            Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

            What Writers Can Learn From The Coolest Podcasts On The Web


            I love listening to podcasts and they are great for improving your writing. I have written about listening and using a series like Serial  before. It is a must-listen for crime writers. It’s fascinating to hear how she breaks down the investigation and pulls apart the old case.

            After I listened to Serial I was desperate for another podcast to keep me occupied and I came across The Black List Table Reads which “takes the best screenplays Hollywood hasn't yet made and turns them into movies... for your ears.” It’s as cool as it sounds. They use great sound effects and awesomely talented voice artists. 

            Now, why would you need to listen to movies as a fiction writer? 
            1. Show, don’t tell. Movies are the ultimate show, don’t tell. There is no internal thought for movie characters, their actions have to show us how they are feeling and why they act the way they do. When you listen to The Black List Table Reads you realise the importance of using strong verbs. When you listen to a movie there is no image to show you how the character walks and behaves. Words like saunter, stride and shuffle make all the difference. It is amazing how they can paint a picture. 
            2. Dialogue. The taped interviews in Serial are an amazing source of ‘raw’ dialogue and serves as an excellent example of why dialogue should not sound like real people talking, but should sound like well, dialogue. The Black List Table Reads however is an example of what dialogue should sound like. It’s amazing to compare the two. 
            3. Description. Once again, when a script is being read there is no image and the description can’t get in the way of the story. The writers use short, specific descriptions to get us in the scene as quickly as possible. Are your descriptions bogging down your story? Also, you should listen to the different voices and sounds, how would you describe it if you had to write that voice or sound. It opens up a whole new way of thinking about description. 
            Writing a movie and writing a book are two different things, but a story is a story and we can learn from all kinds of writers. The Black List Table Reads also interviews the writers about everything from the writing process to the business side of the writing. Lots to learn. 

            Happy listening and happy writing. 

            PS: I am looking for new podcasts to listen to, so if you know of one please leave a comment.

            If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. Please email news@writerswrite.co.za for more details.

             by Mia Botha

            If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

            1. World-Building For Every Genre: The Ultimate Setting Checklist
            2. What Fantasy Writers Can Teach Us About Setting
            3. How To Convey Setting In Dialogue - Without Sounding Like A B&B Brochure

            ~~~

              Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

              25 Email Etiquette Tips For Professional People


              We send emails to place orders, answer questions, ask questions, inform, entertain, and promote.

              If a client’s first impression of a company is a written one, make sure it is good. The way we answer our telephone, the way we conduct ourselves in a meeting, and the way we write sends a message.

              If you work for a company and there is a style guide in place, you should familiarise yourself with its email guidelines.

              25 Email Etiquette Guidelines
              1. Keep separate email accounts for separate uses. Leave your work email address for work. Keep another for personal use.
              2. Check communications daily. Set aside time to do this. It is a good idea to do this three times in your working day. Respond to all your mails so that they do not pile up in your inbox.
              3. Follow general etiquette. Email is the same as a phone call. It is personal. You should be polite and reasonable – even if you are angry. If you are so angry that you cannot be polite, it is a good idea to wait. Avoid sending emotional emails.
              4. Explain acronyms. If you use an abbreviation, you should give an explanation. [Read 7 Rules for Acronyms]
              5. Avoid emoticons. It is tempting to :D <grin> at the recipient, but it is preferable to write that you are glad that everything worked well.
              6. Be consistent. Do not use ‘land’, ‘arrive’ and ‘log-on’ just for variety. They have different meanings and you will confuse your readers.
              7. Avoid caps lock. DO NOT WRITE THE ENTIRE DOCUMENT IN UPPERCASE – it is rude. It is the equivalent of shouting. It is also not as easy to read as it looks.
              8. Avoid !!! Terry Pratchett wrote that multiple exclamation marks are a ‘sure sign of a diseased mind’. Using too many makes them ineffective anyway.
              9. Clients are not your friends. Do not forward jokes, poems, warnings, and chain letters to clients. They will delete them, and feel that you have crossed a line. 
              10. Avoid profanity. Swearing is never an option. Profanity always looks worse when it is in writing.
              11. Email is immediate. Reply to emails as soon as possible. The rule is to try to reply on the same day.
              12. Answer all the questions asked. Anticipate questions, and answer those as well. Keep outgoing emails down to one or two questions. If you receive the same queries, keep a copy of the usual response in your drafts folder. Use it when you reply.
              13. Reply to all? If there is more than one recipient, decide if the reply must be sent to them as well.
              14. To: Check email addresses. You may have used the incorrect one and sent the wrong information to the wrong person. This is harmless if it is our dad, embarrassing if it is our boss, and lethal if it is another customer.
              15. CC: CC means carbon copy. For multiple recipients who know each other, use the TO field for the main person, and the CC field for the other interested parties.
              16. BCC: BCC means blind carbon copy. For an email that is going to people with a common purpose, for example, all the delegates in a class, use the BCC field. This ensures that everybody receives the message and that their email addresses remain private.
              17. Use good subject lines. A clear subject line indicates the reason for the email and it prevents our email being deleted as spam. Our emails will be blocked or end up in the junk file if we use a random selection of acronyms, numbers and provocative words.
              18. Greetings. Emails are not as formal as a letter, but ‘Yo’ and ‘Hey’ are not appropriate. A little respect goes a long way. We should use the recipient’s name or surname, and make sure we spell it correctly. Example: Dear Susan or Dear Miss Jones
              19. Check it. Take time to edit an email. If the recipient is querying an earlier email, delete the irrelevant parts. Then focus on their question.
              20. The closing line. This should leave a favourable impression. Example: Please let me know if you need anything else.
              21. Salutations. Use an appropriate salutation. We recommend ‘Kind regards’.
              22. Signing off. It is polite to include your name at the end of the email. The reader can see your title, if applicable, and the correct spelling of your name.
              23. Apply good writing practices. Standard grammar and spelling rules apply to emails. Set up your email to use a spellchecker. Check grammar and style. [Read 5 Fool Proof Ways To Write Better Emails]
              24. Attachments. If you are sending an attachment, make sure you attach it. Remember that most servers block images, links and zip files. Most companies block attachments over 1MB, unless otherwise specified. Keep the attachment size as small as possible, and only send if necessary.
              25. Keep it simple. Never underestimate the power of simplicity. The best emails are clear - without colours, background pictures, BOLD, italics, and underlining.

              If you want to improve your business writing, join us for The Plain Language Programme. Please email  news@writerswrite.co.za  for details.

                 by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Pinterest,  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Google+,  LinkedIn, and  Twitter.

                 If you enjoyed this article, read these posts:
                1. What Is A Style Guide And Why Do I Need One?
                2. 27 Blogging Tips To Grow Your Business
                3. 5 Fool Proof Ways To Write Better Emails

                ~~~

                Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

                3 Reasons Why Creative Writers Make The Best Content Writers


                Guest Post

                You’ve just opened up a position in your company for a Content Marketer position and are already flooded with applications. One of the standout resumes is a new graduate, but their university major is in Creative Writing, with a minor in commerce.

                Their application is great, but you can’t get past the fact that their education in business is minimal. Even though their background might be useful for tasks such as running the company blog, you still have your doubts.

                What reasons should consider to determine whether or not you call the applicant in for an interview?


                1.    Writers Wear Other People’s Shoes
                So here’s the thing: if you’re a writer, you’re used to putting yourself in the shoes of another character. You imagine that character’s wants, needs, pains, motivations, etc.

                We do the same thing in business. We must put ourselves in the shoes of the customer, and try to understand their buying motivations, their psychographics, and more.

                If you put a creative writer in charge of communicating with customers, they will be able to think from the client’s point of view. Therefore, they will be able to construct messages in a way that is easier for the reader to understand.

                In business, we are so used to assuming users understand the value of what we are trying to offer. However, writers don’t assume; they get behind the character’s story to truly understand them.

                By understanding the user, we are able to convey value in a way that they can understand. This means they are more likely to buy into what we are trying to offer.

                2.    Writers Are Storytellers
                Writers are natural storytellers. They are able to show, and not tell.

                When you show something, it becomes a lot more convincing and inviting. Simply telling or dictating an option to a customer does not actually compel them to make a buying decision or believe in your company—in fact, it probably repels them.

                Whether it’s a blog post, video, or infographic, writers think in the mind-set of creating a customer’s story involve a given product or service. If users can picture themselves engaging with your business, they’re one step further along in the client's journey.

                3.    Writers Can Write Like Humans
                Content marketing is the one place where the phrase “if you've got it, flaunt it” does not apply. So gag your inner Ross Geller and suppress the urge to use all that fancy jargon and lingo you know.

                Creative writers understand that they must write in a language everyone understands; they also understand the importance that tone and style play in content. This is a simple fact that we tend to overlook every day.

                When users read your content online on your social media pages or website, it should not take effort or be complicated. More importantly, the tone, playfulness, etc., of your content should be used to give an indication to your company values and culture
                Imagine if you’ve just released a new video advertisement, and are cross-posting it on all your video channels. A regular message might look something like:
                Hello, everyone! We’ve just released our new video; please have a look when you get the chance #campaignhashtag.”
                Or, you could say:
                Hello, [insert affectionate nickname for organization community citizens, i.e., Googlers, Snapsters, Starbers, etc.)! We’ve got something new for you; we can’t say exactly what it is, but it involves a lemur playing the trombone. Have a look! #campaignhashtag.”
                Which message is more compelling? I don’t know about you, but I’d probably want to see what the lemur playing trombone looked like. While not every example is as wonderfully weird as this one, you get the idea. Language, tone, playfulness—they are all important in letting your audience know about your organisation. Writers are good at that.

                Unsure of what type of candidate makes a good content marketer, or not sure if your creative writing talent is relevant to a marketing job? Think again. Knowledge around SEO, digital communications, etc., is easy to teach; soft skills like creativity and outside-of-the-box thinking are inherent, and cannot be taught. 

                Happy writing! 

                 by Arash Asli. Arash is at the forefront of business growth. As Co-founder and CEO of Yocale, he has a unique blend of technology, business development, corporate, and finance experience. Arash is honoured to have been named the Business in Vancouver’s Top Forty under 40 business executive.

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