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3 Books to Help You Learn How to Write Better and More Effectively

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books that will teach you how to write better
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“It’s been 2 years since I left writing, how would I start it again?” I cried to my friend. Telling him how I failed to generate regular income from sources other than writing, and how I am drowning in 1 million dollars of debt. I left writing because I felt it was the core reason for my depression, but I was totally wrong. It was not the writing that triggered my stress hormones, the real culprit was not knowing “how to write and grow”.

Hearing my story, my friend told me that continuing writing is the only way to get rid of my debt before I go bankrupt. I asked many of my writer friends “how to write”. They all said the same thing, “Find your voice”. I am not a believer in learning something just based on your voice. I believe that there is a formula for learning everything. For example, for my diet, I learned to eat small portions every two hours. Local homemade food. This is a timeless strategy. I wanted something like this for my writing.

In my writing-free days, I was reading like hell, learning everything that came my way, including stock market, psychology, diet, exercise, etc. From there, I got the idea and thought, “If I am able to learn everything from a book, why not learn how to write better?” My debt motivated me to learn writing quickly and start immediately, which is how I found three timeless books on how to write. Thankfully, all three books were short and to the point, which helped me get started with writing immediately. You don’t need experience to learn the formula discussed in the books.

Book 1: 2K to 10K Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love by Rachel Aaron

The title sounds like something one can implement to write faster. And the doubt to write before you learn to write faster crawls in. But trust me, this is the elixir of writing. In her book, Rachel first teaches you how to write.

How to begin? She shares a timeless formula which applies to all types of writing including fiction, non-fiction, advertisement, blogs, or whatever you dream of. Here’s the formula from Rachel Aaron: Setup – Action – Resolution

First, you show what’s going on (setup), then something happens (action), and at last you come up with a solution (resolution). Take any blog, advertisement or novel – everything revolves around this simple formula.

For experienced writers, this may sound too basic. But for me, the formula was no less than a godsend while I was drowning in debt. From the day I completed this book, I started applying for various freelance writing jobs. I convinced myself that I have to offer a free writing sample before I win the trust of clients. Within a week of my book completion and job application procedure, I landed my first client with regular pay for 5 straight months.

But I didn’t stop there. I knew my writing was missing something, which took me to my next popular book.

Book 2: On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King

Most writers have read this book and always keep it on their shelves. I did the same. An Amazon reviewer suggested that the second part of the book is worth a treasure for writers, while the first part is full of Stephen’s story. Desperate to get more writing projects, I skipped the first part and completed another writing course on sentence structure and the essentials of writing.

Where Rachel Aaron teaches the surface of writing, Stephen King peels a few deeper layers. He teaches you how to show instead of simply telling the story. He also suggests keeping sentences shorter and trying to go for “noun + verb” sentences to keep writing simple and easily understandable. Another tip I liked the most about editing is: Editing = “draft – 10%”. After reading this and submitting samples for free, I landed 2 more clients. One regular while the other gives me a blog once a week.

After 3 months, I was able to pay 80% of my bills. I was happy to reach that stage but I was still running out of money. And a few times, I received complaints of poor grammar. I apologized to them and bought a paid version of Grammarly. At the same time, I started non-stop practice of grammar with my third book.

Book 3: The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr.

When I received this 100-page book, I fell in love with its teeny-weeny silver-colored texture. It’s so cute and small that I spent an entire day admiring its beauty. The next day, I started learning each grammar lesson.

To be honest, it was boring. But I had to do something to keep my writing away from language errors. So, I took notes of each lesson. Slowly, I started editing my own work as per the grammar rules, and soon enough, my clients’ grammar complaints reduced.

I still use the paid version of Grammarly, simply because you can’t remember each and every grammar rule. It’s a matter of constant reading and writing which takes years to master. Until then, I keep learning the grammar from this book and edit my articles as per the discussed rules.

Walking on the Path of Growth

Even today, after getting published on high-quality sites, I still swear by these 3 books. But I never stop learning from other writers. Being a writer, I realized that writing wasn’t my only issue, it was maintaining the schedule of constant writing and improving on it day by day. So, I subscribed to Medium for daily writing tips. From there, I never stopped learning. I pitch to high-quality sites with various topics, even if I get rejected. It gives me a challenge to improve more and a published article as a reward.

P.S. My debt is decreasing and my writing is improving day by day.

Manisha Sukhyani is a professional freelance writer with 6+ years of experience. She offers writing services to businesses of all sizes. In leisure time, she loves to share writing tips, online marketing stories, and psychological facts. Reach her on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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20 Ways You Can Become a Powerful Communicator

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Emile Steenveld Speaker and Coach

Some people seem to naturally know how to effectively communicate in a group setting. They can express themselves clearly and listen attentively without dominating the conversation.

Being a powerful communicator is important for several reasons, including building and maintaining relationships, achieving goals, resolving conflicts, improving productivity, leading and influencing others, advancing in your career, expressing yourself more confidently and authentically, and improving your mental and emotional well-being. Effective communication is an essential life skill that can benefit you in all aspects of your life.

But, don’t worry if you don’t naturally possess this skill, as effective communication is something that can be developed with practice, planning and preparation.
 

1.  Listen actively: Practice active listening by giving your full attention to the speaker and responding to what they are saying.

 

2. Use “I” statements: Speak from your own perspective and avoid placing blame or making accusations.

 

3. Avoid assumptions: Don’t make assumptions about what the other person is thinking or feeling.

 

4. Be clear: Express your thoughts and feelings clearly and concisely by getting to the point and avoid using jargon or overly complex language.

 

5. Show empathy: Show that you understand and care about the other person’s feelings.

 

6. Offer valuable insights: When speaking in a group, provide a valuable takeaway or actionable item that people can walk away with.

 

7. Be an active listener: Listen attentively and respond accordingly, incorporating your points into the conversation.

 

8. Choose the right time: Pick the most opportune time to speak to ensure that you have the group’s attention and can deliver your message without interruption.

 

9. Be the unifying voice: Step in and unify the group’s thoughts to calm down the discussion and insert your point effectively.

 

10. Keep responses concise: Keep responses short and to the point to show respect for others’ time.

 

11. Avoid unnecessary comments: Avoid commenting on everything and only speak when you have something important to say.

 

12. Cut the fluff: Avoid being long-winded and get straight to the point.

 

13. Prepare ahead of time: Sort out your points and practice them before speaking in a group.

 

14. Smile and be positive: Smile and nod along as others speak, to build a positive relationship and be respected when it’s your turn to speak.

 

15. Take responsibility: Take responsibility for your own actions and feelings.

 

16. Ask questions: Ask questions to clarify any confusion or misunderstandings.

 

17. Avoid interrupting: Allow the other person to finish speaking without interruption.

 

18. Practice active listening: Repeat what the other person said to ensure you have understood correctly.

 

19. Use your body language too: Use nonverbal cues such as eye contact, facial expressions, and body language to convey your message and build rapport.

 

20. Be aware of the tone of your voice: it should be calm and assertive, not aggressive or passive.

 

By keeping these tips in mind, you can improve your communication skills and become a more powerful communicator, which can help you build better relationships, achieve your goals, and lead a more fulfilling life.

I you want to learn how to become more confident in life then you can join my weekly mentorship calls and 40+ online workshops at AweBliss.com so you can master your life with more success.

 
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