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As an editor for several publications, over the internet, I see the same mistakes from new writers. To attract readers, a good format is almost as essential as the written word. Without a format that attracts the eye, many readers will not read the whole post.
Readers will view articles on their mobile when they have five minutes. A format that appeals to both platforms is essential. I normally write the post, edit the post and then format it.
Titles and Subtitles
The pressure on writers to create daily content is huge. If you read many of the articles dedicated to making money from blogging, they all say the same thing. To earn, you need to produce regular content. Daily content, is the suggestion. Not many writers talk about this content needing to be quality content, though.
Sure you will make money from all content, but will you make enough? You have one chance to make a first impression and this is never more true than when it concerns writing.
If a reader’s first introduction to your work is not a quality piece, will they come back and read more? Ask yourself that question as a reader. If you read an article from a new writer, that is littered with grammatical mistakes and has no real content, would you read more of their work?
For this reason, as a writing coach, I have to encourage my writers to write quality content. You should, of course, publish regularly, but this does not need to be daily. Find a routine that you can stick to and work with that. Do not feel pressurised to write every day if you have nothing to say. As a writer, there should be three questions you ask yourself, whenever you sit down and publish a piece of work.
Many editors have advised me to show more and tell less. If you write fiction I am sure you have heard this. It in itself seems like a simple concept. In practice, it is hard to do. When I sit down at my computer it is a thought that is my constant companion. It should be on your mind when you sit on your desk chair. The edge biting into your legs as you shuffle to get comfy. Fingers hammering on the keys as cramp starts to take hold of your wrist. Your heart beating faster as you attempt to get your protagonist out of one more scrap. A dull ache behind your eyes. The sense of dread rising in your stomach as you realise what in front of you is crap. You probably think that was a long introduction, but as you can see even with factual writing you can show not tell
Character development is essential for all writers. It is your characters, that keep your readers, reading. I have several books that I have stopped reading halfway through because I didn’t care for the characters. If you don’t care for the characters why would you want to keep reading, to find out what happened to them?
As writers, you have to develop likeable characters that people relate to. These characters should be likeable, but realistic. Unless you are writing a fairy tale I would steer away from Prince Charming. Flawed characters are better to attract readers. It makes them more likeable.
There are several writers that I admire for their character development. These are writers that I will visit again and again. It is no coincidence that most of them come from a series. A series allows a writer to develop a character more. Some of the characters I am going to speak about have almost become old friends. The development of these characters can teach us as writers many lessons.
As writers, we are constantly told to polish our work to the best version we can, before publishing. The advice is good, a manuscript should be edited and complete before you send it. The best version of yourself. You only get one chance to make a first impression.