So you want to get better at writing, and you want to get better fast. I’ve got good news, and bad news. The good news is, you can totally improve your writing skills as quickly as you want. The bad news? It’ll take work. Hard work, and a lot of it, too! But that’s life, right? Good quality anything takes time and effort, there’s just no way around it.
Quick Ways To Improve Your Writing
Well, quick-ish ways to improve your writing! There are a couple of things you can do to improve your writing skills. Three things, really. All you have to do to improve your writing is read, study, and, well… write. It’s really that easy!
Good writers are avid readers. Periodt. Read as much as you can, as often as you can! The more you read, the more familiar you’ll get with various writing styles, and the more you’ll be able to style yourself after your favs. If you want to be a good writer then you’ve got to know what good writing looks like, and what it sounds like.
Then, the more good books, or articles, or anything else you read, the easier it will be for you to recognize bad writing. Plus, reading every day means you’ll never ever run out of ideas and inspiration for things to write about!
Remember, you’re writing for your readers. Sure, better writing will help you in school, and it will help you professionally, too, but that’s not a great mindset to have if you want to improve your writing quickly. You’re writing for your audience above all else. Put yourself in their shoes and make an effort to read the types of things that they read. Doing so will teach you what your audience likes, as well as what they expect.
Of course, you don’t always have to read what your audience likes.
Maybe you’d rather read a magazine, a blog, or a news article. It doesn’t really matter what you read, so long as you’re reading! Even just reading something short on your phone while taking the bus to work will help improve your writing skills. People often use the excuse that they don’t have enough time to read, and I think they forget that there’s no rule about how long reading should last.
Yeah, it’s nice to spend a day snuggled up under a blanket with a good book, but even 10 minutes of reading while enjoying your morning coffee, or even as little as 5 minutes before bed will be helpful!
Grammar is a big part of writing. Study it. You don’t necessarily have to follow all of the rules, but it’s a good idea to know what they are! Language is living, it’s flexible, it’s always changing and growing. Not only that, but there’s tons of dialects and various vernaculars with differing stylistic conventions. For example, I could write
Ah dropped mah egg oan th’ flair this mornin’.
and it’s just as correct as
I dropped my egg on the floor this morning.
and I could even say
me drop me egg on floor in morning
The point of writing is communication. Can you be understood without using perfect grammar? Sometimes yes, and sometimes no. It really just depends. Often, though, perfect grammar isn’t necessary for someone to present their ideas in writing.
So why bother learning grammar then? Grammar helps us be as precise as possible when presenting an idea. It, hopefully, helps us clearly and accurately present information to the reader in a way that they can understand. But perfect grammar isn’t always necessary.
Think about how many people you know that know all of the rules of grammar? Or at least, how many people do you know that pretend that they do?
The grammar police are a lot like the real police; they don’t know every single law but act like they do anyways!
Besides, rules are meant to be broken. You have to know what the rules actually are to be able to break them though, ya know? Think of it this way: you can’t think outside of the box if you don’t even know that there’s a box there! Not only that, but grammar is a tool meant to help us communicate more clearly. It’s there to help. Especially if you’re going to be doing academic, corporate, or otherwise professional writing, you’re going to be expected to know the basic rules of grammar. That’s just life.
Once you learn the set of rules, you can play around with bending and breaking the rules for fun and for style.
Write Every Day
This is the most important thing to do if you want to improve your writing skills quickly! Write as often as you can, silly! How are you gonna get better at writing if you don’t write? Seriously, the quickest way to get better at writing is to just do it. That’s what my math teacher used to say all the time, “just do it, kid.” It was annoying back then, but he had a point. How are you gonna get better at anything without practice?
Write letters, keep a diary, write silly little poems in your phone at traffic stops, write opinion pieces or book reviews or something. It doesn’t have to be professional, it doesn’t have to be academic or anything too deep. even. How are you gonna get better at writing if you don’t write, right? Just do it. And read your work, too.
If you’re writing every day, you’ll always have something to read the next day, right?
So how are you gonna have things to write about every day? Read! Constantly take in new information in any way that you can; constant output requires constant input, ya know? That’s the secret to getting better at writing. Just don’t stop. Keep going. The more you work at it, the more time you dedicate to reading and writing, the better you’ll get. That’s all it takes. Practice.
If you want to get better faster, read and write more often. The less often you practice, the slower you’ll improve, because gosh darn it you just can’t get better if you don’t put forth any effort!
How often do you write? Let me know in the comments below! Thanks for reading 🌞