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Writing Skills

By littlemissangel101 Feb 13, 2014 884 Words
Writing Skills
Improving your writing skills
Make an effort to write regularly
Read regularly and as widely as possible. Expand your vocabulary Look for different approaches to writing. Different structures or styles, a variety of tones and rhythms Take notice of the small, funny, interesting things that happen around you Re-read what you write to see if you have expressed yourself clearly Be open to criticism and feedback

The style of writing will depend on the purpose of your writing. Writing types include – description, exposition, narration, persuasion, compare and contrast, share experience/ideas, commentary, instruction, inform Writing essays

Understanding and interpreting the question – Always read the question thoroughly to the end. Highlight key words ad parts of the question. Read the guidelines to help create boundaries. Clarify the question. Planning – *brainstorm ideas* Don’t rush straight into writing without taking time to get ideas. Record all ideas, don’t make judgement about ideas. *Organise and structure* Look through your ideas and see if any can be linked. See if any are irrelevant. Decide the order of which the ideas should be presented in. Writing your draft

Introduction – Where you make your stand and outline your argument in response to the question. Use keywords from the question when framing the response. Only have the main idea. Body – Each point should be dealt with in a separate paragraph. Follow the structure of a topic sentence followed by supporting information and a concluding sentence leading to the next paragraph. The topic sentence should follow from the previous paragraph and the concluding sentence should lead to the next. It is not enough to state your opinion. Supply evidence (quotes, examples etc.) Do not get side tracked. Conclusion – Should summarise the main points of your argument. Do not include ANY new information. Make a strong ending so the reader is left in no doubt. Editing your essay

Allow time to pass between reviewing and working on each draft. Beware of bad habits. Read one word at a time and what is actually on a page. Get someone else to check. Check if your essay addresses the question and is clear and supported. Then check grammatical structure and whether the style of writing can be improved. Then check formatting and correct referencing. 4 ‘wells’ of good essay writing

Well Focused: Answer the question without including additional material Well Organised: Logically structured train of thought bringing the argument together Well Supported: Prove your points with evidence, ideas, facts, figures, quotes etc. Well Packaged: Good grammar, spelling, punctuation, and style Writing essays in exams

Same principle as with general essay writing but time is compressed. Underline and highlight key words. Think about the style required Still take time to plan, brainstorm, and organise but very quickly As you can’t do a draft, pay attention to spelling, grammar, punctuation and expression as you write. Stick to the structure of introduction, body and conclusion

Creative Writing
Generate ideas; brainstorm every possible thought and idea. Determine the format of your writing if it has not been specified; letter/email, diary/journal entry, story, poem, flashback, writing from multiple points of view, report, editorials/articles, autobiography, biography, interview, instruction, procedure, report, speech, review. Be expressive; use the senses, descriptive and imaginative language. Decide on a particular point of view and who’s character/persona you are Letter Writing

Formal letter – Letters of complaint, opinion, or recommendation Be clear about your purpose
Adjust your language to suit the outcome you are trying to achieve The tone should be more formal and polite
Needs to be clear and persuasive with evidence presently factually and accurately Informal letters – Letters to a friend, to inform, to amuse Language and tone will be much more informal
Write as though you are speaking to them. You can use slang or less formal terms Improving Handwriting
Make a conscientious effort to slow down and write neater but practise every day practise writing with speed Write with a pen that’s weighted at the end to build muscles Always write on lined paper and take note of how you are writing Experiment with different pens and see which is easiest to write with. Experiment print and cursive handwriting

Notes
Be active instead of passive - One of the most common manifestations of bad writing is overuse of the passive voice. The passive voice makes the object of an action into the subject of the sentence with verb forms like "X had been attacked by Y" instead of simply "Y attacked X." Learn to avoid these constructions as much as you can Use strong words – Look for words that are as specific as possible. Do not repeat the same word over and over unles you are trying to build a rhythm with it Cut the chaff – Good writing is simple clear and direct. You don’t get points for saying something in 50 words when it could be said in 20. Good writing is about using the right words not filling up the page. Show, don’t tell – Try to let the readers discover the same ideas through the words, feelings and actions of your character. Avoid clichés – They are unoriginal. They may have been powerful at one point but now they have been overused ti the point of having little value. Reimagine it in some way

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