Saturday, March 20, 2021

7 Things You Can Get Away With if You are an Experienced Writer

Before we get to the marketing stuff, here is your pig farming moment of zen:

Their pen may have been escapable, but their cuteness is not.

7 Things You Can Get Away With if You are an Experienced Writer

Good writing is in some ways like pornography. Both are difficult to define conclusively, but you will definitely know it when you see it. If you are a good writer, you can "get away" with things that are beyond your basic assignment that will make your contribution more compelling.
  1. Good writers can extrapolate content from other sources without it sounding like a plagiarized book report. I mean that you can pull a phrase from the CEOs last speech, a paragraph from the last blog post you ghost-wrote for the VP, and the speaker notes from the sales presentation and knit it together in a new way that makes a fresh and compelling point and reiterates your key content themes.

  2. You can do your own research to supplement materials provided. I once had a client who wanted me to write an article for a trade publication on her behalf. She helpfully provided me with--I am not making this up--two dozen links to pages on their blog that featured 5-word definitions of industry terms. That's a lot of knitting. So, confident in my knowledge and abilities, I researched the topic myself, looking both within their own materials and in the industry to create a great, insightful article.

  3. With skill comes efficiency, which translates to the ability to wait until the last minute to bang stuff out. Like many creatives, experienced writers thrive on the pressure of deadlines and still get away with producing high-quality content on tight turnaround.

  4. Good writers can mimic another's style. Whether it is writing in the "voice" of an executive, or just ensuring you are using industry terms and phrases, a good writer can adopt writing styles to suit the situation.

  5. You can write something from nothing. Similar to #2, you can start with the blank page and create something from sometimes literally nothing. Clients/bosses ask you to draft messages they can't articulate on topics they can't define. And you do it. 

  6. You weave in the essence of company branding, strategy and messaging without ham handedly shoving the stilted words of the vision directly into the text. More difficult than starting with nothing is starting with something that you are required to incorporate into the text--and make it seem natural.

  7. Experienced writers have tricks up their sleeve. Tricks like using lists to grab a reader's attention and also jump from topic to topic without needing fancy paragraph transitions. Don't forget the headlines and headers. Good writers can create punchy headlines that will drive interest and use headers to help break up long text.
Good, experienced writers are often victims of our own success. We make all of this look easy, so it's important we make sure not to sell ourselves short.

Need an experienced writer? Hit me up.


  1. Very valid points; although I like to think of it as craft, not tricks, lol. One thought, re: #4: I don't think of it as a mimic, I think of it a mirror. I wish, but I can't write or emulate great authors, like John Steinbeck, Joan Didion (of all the writers I didn't meet, top of the list) or Cormac McCarthy. But like a good casserole, I might adapt elements of their style, or word choice.

    1. When I'm deep in a writing project it feel like putting the pieces of a puzzle together. I do like thinking about a casserole too!

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