Write an article a day
Copyright (c) 2002 by Angela Booth
** This article is adapted from my new email workshop, Writing To Sell In The Internet Age. If you want to get a taste of workshop, you can sign up for free mini-course based on Writing To Sell In The Internet Age, on Web site --- http://www.digital-e.biz/
Want to become a better writer? Easy. Just write an article a day.
When you write each and every day, you develop skill. Writing is a skill that demands easy interaction of various parts of your brain. This interaction isn't developed without practice, nor does interaction seem to remain viable unless you consistently practice --- unless you write every day.
I imagine writing skills as being like developing communication pathways between different areas in brain. If you don't practice your writing daily, those pathways disappear, just like untraversed paths through a forest.
===> Please write an article a day for seven days
No instruction I give you about getting ideas for articles, doing research, or how to structure an article will do as much for you as actually writing things. Consistently. Day after day. For at least seven days.
I promise you, at end of seven days you will be a better writer. You've been reading articles in newspapers, magazines and online for years. You know how it's done. Doing it will bring out that hidden knowledge you have and make it consciously usable.
Writing articles is a skill you learn by doing, just as you learned to tie your shoelaces and to walk.
I'd like you to write an article a day, of at least three hundred words. That's just over one page.
Use BEST formula below to get your articles written.
The BEST formula is an easy way to remember basic article structure. I discovered it in June Duncan Owen's book How To Write And Sell Articles (Penguin Books 1992, ISBN 014 0146 253).
===> The BEST formula for writing articles
BEST is an acronym for ---
B --- Bait
E --- Explanation
S --- Step
T --- Termination
===> The BAIT
The BAIT is also known as hook. It's an intriguing beginning for your article.
As well as being beginning of your article, it's also most important part. It tells reader why she should care, why she should stop and read article. It's important because if your reader doesn't like bait, she's not going to read rest of article.
Pick up six different magazines, ones you have at home, or ones you go and buy. Look at baits, first couple of paragraphs, in each article in those six magazines. All baits in articles will be different.
Don't spend too long writing bait for an article. I often write bait after I've finished an article. The only time you need to spend a lot of time on getting your bait exactly right is if you're writing an article for a major market. If you're getting a dollar a word or more, it's worth it to write out ten or twenty forms of bait and pick best one.