Don't Attempt To Write Without Them!

Written by Linda Elizabeth Alexander

You're ready to do it. You've accepted an assignment from your boss, agreed to put together a sales presentation, or were asked to write a report about last week's meeting results. Where do you begin? Before you venture off intorepparttar land of writing for your job, be prepared withrepparttar 129469 items on this checklist.

1. Adjust your attitude. Writing doesn't have to be like drawing blood. In fact, many times in business writing, much ofrepparttar 129470 work is already done for you. Your job may be as simple as rewording or organizing information that you already have.

2. Quiet. No matter how much you like your music or AM radio talk show it is best to work in a quiet spot. Even if you work in a noisy place like a newsroom or a cube farm, reducerepparttar 129471 amount of noise around you so you can concentrate better. Wear earplugs if it helps you!

3. Your thinking cap! Colored markers, pencils, or a large easel pad may help you with brainstorming. Or, you may find it easier to work with a team first to generate ideas and then have one person writerepparttar 129472 first draft. Whatever works for you, make sure your brain is in creative mode, not editing/criticism mode. Creativity comes first; editing and refining later.

4. Eliminate distractions.

Turn offrepparttar 129473 phone, close your office door, and don't check your email every 10 seconds. Have your assistant tell everyone you're in a meeting and you can't see him or her unless they're dying. For at least 1 hour, work with no interruptions.

5. Computer, pen, scratchpad, or other tools you like.

You may prefer writing longhand; it can help you connect with your thoughts and emotions. Or, you may be quicker at typing directly onrepparttar 129474 computer. Either way, don't expect a perfect draftrepparttar 129475 first time. You will be scribbling a lot (or cutting and pasting) at first.

6. Contact names and phone numbers, etc.

Be sure you have handy a list of people you might need to talk with to verify information. For example, if you are writing an article for your company newsletter, you may need quotes fromrepparttar 129476 CEO.

Business Writing Skills II - A Web Writing Primer

Written by Linda Elizabeth Alexander

Whatever you would write on paper, cut it in half. The web was designed for quick reading. Studies show that people do not read long blocks of text while surfingrepparttar web; reading fromrepparttar 129467 screen is often slower than reading on paper. Therefore, be as brief and torepparttar 129468 point as you can be, or risk losing your readers' attention.

Write for scanning. Since web surfers often skim web copy, avoid using long blocks of text. Use lots of white space, bulleted and numbered lists, and short paragraphs (1 or 2 sentence paragraphs are not out ofrepparttar 129469 question).

Also, begin with a short conclusion. This way,repparttar 129470 reader will know right away if your topic is one s/he is interested in.

Keep your copy simple. No need for elevated language onrepparttar 129471 web. Once, I read that you should pretend you're writing a TV commercial: Keep your copy short and succinct.

Write conversationally. Think of your readers as individual people rather than as a faceless "audience." Reading your piece out loud easily tests this. Or, have a friend read it to you. If it doesn't flow smoothly, it is time to rework your copy.

Use nested headings. In addition to using short paragraphs, break up your copy into two or three levels of headlines and sub heads. This way,repparttar 129472 reader can more easily scan to a topic she is interested in.

Use emphasis and hypertext. If using long text where appropriate (say, in an in- depth article or report), it helps to break up your text into several pages connected by links.

The beauty ofrepparttar 129473 web is that your interested readers will follow you torepparttar 129474 detailed information if they want; otherwise, they can scanrepparttar 129475 general information that is nicely laid out onrepparttar 129476 first page of your article.

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