Written by Tim North

Writing to persuade is a tough task, but with a bit of planning it can be made easier and more effective.

When you try to persuade someone, often you'll be trying to do one of these three things:

* confirm an existing belief;

* challenge an existing belief; or

* change an existing belief.

In order to be as persuasive as possible, it's important to decide before you begin writing which of these three you're trying to accomplish as they each need different strategies.

Clearly this is a topic that can have a great deal written about it, but here are a few starting points.


If you're trying to confirm a person's beliefs through your writing, don't simply provide them with information; rather, try to validate their beliefs and compliment them on them.

Try to make them feel comfortable, and remove any reason for them to doubt their existing choice. For example, you might say:

I recommend that we continue these environmentally sound procedures.

Words like "sound", "tried and true", "trusted", "fiscally responsible" and "proven" reassure and subtly flatterrepparttar reader that their current choices are good ones.


If you're trying to challenge a person's beliefs, you'll try to persuade them to question them. You'll deliberately try to upsetrepparttar 129346 status quo and shake things up a bit. For example:

Our belief thatrepparttar 129347 leach pads are not leaking dangerous contaminants intorepparttar 129348 groundwater supply may be unfounded. I urgently recommend a research study to investigate this potentially damaging situation.

Choosing an Effective Title

Written by Tim North

"Titles distinguishrepparttar mediocre, embarrass repparttar 129344 superior and are disgraced byrepparttar 129345 inferior."

George Bernard Shaw

It may seem trivial to tell you to choose a good title for your next written work, butrepparttar 129346 importance of this task should not be underestimated. A good title may berepparttar 129347 difference between a reader choosing to look at your work or passing over it.

Many readers will learn of your work while surrounded by other documents that are competing for their attention. For example, they may see it while:

* scanningrepparttar 129348 printed documents on a bookshelf;

* looking throughrepparttar 129349 titles in a printed index;

* looking at a bound collection of documents; or

* searchingrepparttar 129350 Internet.

A good title can help your work to stand out fromrepparttar 129351 crowd. Here then are some guidelines for choosing a good title.



When choosing a title, avoid generic phrases like 'An investigation of...', 'A study into...' and 'Observations on...'. These are implied anyway and add little value.

Compare these two titles:

A study ofrepparttar 129352 effects of chaos as a source of complexity and diversity in evolutionary processes

Chaos as a source of complexity and diversity in evolution

The first title takes seventeen words,repparttar 129353 second one ten. The first one contains extra words that convey slightly more information (study, effects and processes) but atrepparttar 129354 cost of makingrepparttar 129355 title notably longer and less memorable.

Here is another example:

A description of a variety of different tools for creating an interactive virtual-cinema environment

Tools for interactive virtual cinema

The first title clearly employs more words than are needed (fourteen versus five). It does contain more information, but atrepparttar 129356 cost of being wordier, harder to remember and buryingrepparttar 129357 key words atrepparttar 129358 end ofrepparttar 129359 sentence.

Indeed, inrepparttar 129360 first title,repparttar 129361 key word virtual-cinema isrepparttar 129362 thirteenth word inrepparttar 129363 sentence, You have to read almostrepparttar 129364 entire title before finding out whatrepparttar 129365 paper is about. This leads us to our next guideline ...

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