Workshop: What transforms a good article into a great article?

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It is always a good idea to sit down and review your writing method from time to time before embarking on the voyage to a new project. With so many similar types of order requests, it might be easy to get into a writing rut. Here we present you one or two points which might help tighten up that writing style and save some time whilst doing so.

Coherency

The number one commandment for an informative text is the short and clear rule. In a well written and informative article, the sentences tend to be succinct and clear, but long enough to avoid sinking into banal, Neanderthal style phrasing. A sentence length of around 15 to 20 words is ideal, so abstain from using unnecessary relative clauses and filler words (such as; now, well, then, simply). Instead, concentrate on making your phrasing precise and to the point. Make sure that the point of each sentence is conveyed through the clarity of language.

Reader Friendly

A reader-friendly text is free from grammatical, spelling and phrasing errors. Whilst it is often the case that clients request articles written in the third person, this does not mean that you should try and force ‘one should....’ into your article if doing so detracts from the quality. Formulating your text in an active, rather than passive voice lightens the flow of text and ensures fluency for the reader.

AIDA Principle (Attention-Interest-Desire-Action)

Provoke attention, arouse interest, increase the desire and prompt the purchase. But how? Take the emotional route, capture your reader with creative headlines and exciting introductions, and by doing so, awaken their curiosity. A good text should speak to the reader’s imagination or stimulate their desire. ‘AHA’ effects and stories have just as much effect on a reader as descriptive vocabulary (such as metaphors, examples) which starts the mind’s cinema rolling. Surprise your reader with unique content, without the reliance on cliche or set phrasing: Write your article the way no one else would.

The Red Thread

Before you even sit down to write, make sure that you have a clear idea of the direction your article will take. That will make it so much easier for you to create logical paragraphs and compose suitable subtitles. It is your task as the writer to discern the essential from the inessential information, and to ensure that the most important or relevant comes first.

And, of course, a good text does not just end, rather it draws to a close with a conclusion or other well formulated phrasing which neatly rounds off the text. It is, for example, a good idea to throw out this ‘anchor’ in the introduction of your article so that you can draw it in with your conclusion.

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