If you’re a writer, the d-word plagues you daily.
Is your writing good enough? Is your writing ever going to be good enough?
Writing confidently is more than just feeling good about the thoughts that exit your brain and form neatly arranged words in a document.
To remove doubt, old-fashioned TLC has to be an integral part of your artistic lifestyle.
Here are 12 editing solutions that help you care for yourself and your writing.
Hug Your Ideas
1. Express yourself creatively.
If complete sentences stifle your ideas, use bullet points, charts, or pictures for your first draft. Nurture your ideas rather than worry about making them sound good for someone else.
2. Keep writing.
Fully develop your ideas before you edit. Don’t delete anything until it’s time to revise your content.
3. Warm up with a tangent.
Expand on a tangent that you’re passionate about but you know you won’t use in your final draft. Writing can become effortless when you focus on something that’s on your mind, as if you’re talking to a friend. Afterward, you’ll more naturally communicate your actual topic.
4. Break it down.
Pay attention to one underdeveloped area of your content. That’s your only writing task for that day. Forget about everything else.
Hug Your Writing
5. Forget you.
Proofread slowly to confirm that your concepts are easy to comprehend. Does your message make sense to someone else?
6. Highlight all punctuation.
Those pretty symbols help guide your reader. Are commas, dashes, and semicolons used correctly? Did you write “it’s” instead of “its”?
7. Change the font.
When you are ready to edit, review your text in a different font (and perhaps even a different size) to get a fresh perspective.
8. Print it out.
Inconsistencies, abrupt transitions, and repetitive text are just a few types of writing weaknesses that become obvious when proofreading a printed document.
When was the last time you had something nutritious to eat or a drink of water? Give your body fuel and your writing worries won’t seem as daunting.
Stay healthy to make your job easier. The perfect phrases will inevitably appear. You can’t force or rush the process.
Your eyes are probably tired of looking at words, but who doesn’t love mindless TV or YouTube clips? View something enjoyable and inspirational before you fix a messy section of your text.
If you’re fed up with your writing, stop. Let go of the clenched fists and furrowed brow. Find peace elsewhere. You can walk down the street, head to the gym, or simply stand in the shower. Sometimes the best thing that you can do for your writing is leave it alone.
Stefanie Flaxman created Revision Fairy® Small Business Proofreading Services with your editing needs in mind. Follow @RevisionFairy and take a free copy of Your Ultimate Online Proofreading Guide for Better Writing.