Writing Habits

Is it essential to develop writing habits? One dictionary defines a habit as "a settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up".

In line with this definition, the answer would be yes, to the question in the last paragraph. Developing great writing habits would benefit you mentally and affect your overall well being when others come to know you and appreciate your writing.

Who does not like a beautiful, well-written piece? Most readers do. And there are countless writers out there that deliver on good writing.

I was in a forum not too long ago, and someone posed the question: Can one become an excellent writer? 

Initially, I never gave it any serious thought. However, after a couple of days, I remembered it was a significant worry for me when I started writing. And the feeling was so frightening and nearly paralyzed any effort geared towards my writing journey.

When we talk, we use a combination of words, gestures, and our tone of voice to transmit our messages accurately. However, when we write, our readers cannot hear or see us physically.

They 'hear' and 'feel' our emotions by the way we use words, grammar, and punctuation marks.

Without any further ado, here are my top five habits of an excellent writer.

Writing Habits To Develop

  • Excellent writers are excellent readers. Reading increases your vocabulary. It stimulates you mentally, increases your knowledge of the world around you, helps you to be more analytical. You need every one of the benefits mentioned above to become an excellent writer.   
  • PracticePractice they say makes perfect, and you become the master at what you do. No one ever excels on anything by sitting on the couch and achieve excellence with no effort. Think of anyone who has excelled in history. You would see thousands of hours of hard work that made them the success they became. To be an excellent writer, you must write every day. Consistently put in hours of hard work, you cannot progress without this. 
  • Continuous, Ongoing learning Language changes over time, and an excellent writer never stops learning to keep abreast with the latest, the most up to date, the most effective way to communicate ideas through writing.  Also, feedback from other writers are very valuable. Copy their style and combine with your unique talents to create your own "voice" in writing. Check if any of these writers or authors can offer constructive criticism. They become like trainers propelling you to excellence. Good writers never shy away from such feedback. They also polish their writing through tips from tutorials, courses, and forums that promote excellent writing. Your attitude to meaningful feedback may separate you from success or failure.
  • Love writing.If you do not love writing, then do not bother becoming a writer. Perhaps this should have been top on the list! Love and always write on topics you feel the most comfortable. Pretty much like speaking. If you talk on topics you are familiar with, you are more confident and tend to present your facts clearly without mumbling. If you do not know the item, you are discussing, there would be no coherency. Similarly, when you write, write on areas you know, and your readers will feel your enthusiasm and passion. You soon become their writing hero. 
  • Revise what you have written.  Always proofread. Edit and check for common errors. Revising and rewriting offers you the chance at conveying your message most effectively to your readers.   

Writing is not an easy art. It is one that requires hard work and quite rewarding when others benefit from your work.  You may not always get it the first time. However, diligence and hard work always pay off eventually. Make these writing habits part of you. May I finish this post with one of my favorite quotes over the years:

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