“Often with good sentiments we produce bad literature.”
— Andre Gide
Strong writing is a unique feature of capable authors. It is not merely words strung together, copied and pasted, from society’s lingo.
To see the complete list of clichés from clichesite.com, click here.
Have you ever used a word, and found out, to your horror, it doesn’t remotely mean what you intended? Here are a few words that just might fit in that list.
What you think: They mean the same thing.
What they actually mean: To infer is to form an opinion based on evidence and reasoning. The listener infers. To imply is to express something in an indirect way without saying it plainly. The speaker implies.
What you think it means: A fun fact of little consequence.
What it actually means: A fun fact that is not true.
What you think it means: When something doesn’t happen very often.
What it actually means: Something that’s unchanging and constant, e.g., “The football season invariably starts in August.”
What you think they mean: The same thing.
What they actually mean: The palate is the roof of the mouth and also a person’s ability to discern different flavours, while a palette is what an artist uses to mix paints.
Neither are to be confused with pallet, which is a wooden platform used to stack things.”
“In many cases, the more important the writing task, the more the would-be writer freezes up. The result can be something of a Mobius strip of anxiety turned into fear turned into more anxiety, and what you’re left with is a blank page.
To help you work through writer’s block, consider the strategies below…
Don’t wait for perfect words. If every sentence has to be a flawless work of art, then you will sit in fear. The sweat might pour, but the words won’t come. Just start writing words on the page. Know that once you have started, you can go back and revise what you have. But until you start, you will never know where you are trying to go. If you are writing on a tight deadline, it is even more critical that you let go of the notion of immediate perfection. One writer friend of mine offered the analogy that writing is like cleaning a messy room: the only way a large mess gets cleaned up is to start tidying one small corner at a time.”
If you are an author, a blogger, or a copywriter…then correct spelling, punctuation, word use, and grammar is a necessity in all areas of your writing…books, blogs, marketing, advertisements, social media, queries, submissions, letters, and emails.
I can hear the horrified gasps, feel the eyes rolling—doubt and fear from writers everywhere. Panic in the streets.
Before you throw your hands up, and stop reading, let’s look at the WHY behind this necessity.
Your books come and go, but you, the author, remain constant. You are the first line of defense when it comes to marketing yourself—which you are doing every day, every time you write…anything.
You are marketing not only to readers, but to publishers, agents, editors, and your fellow authors who would network with you. You are marketing your writing ability—yes—but you are ALSO marketing your organization capabilities, your attention to details, your desire for accuracy….
What if you don’t care about details and accuracy? Publishers do.
Publishers, editors, and agents notice. In this world of instant access, through social media and blogs, your everyday comments and posts are seen.
Agents, editors, and publishers (oh my!) have deadlines. Organization is a big part of that. Make it appear you are organized—even if you have to fake it.
Here are some excellent tools to keep close to you, always. I suggest bookmarking them, as well as storing them on your smart phones and tablets—wherever you write, post, and email.
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