WARNING – Cannibalism may occur if commas aren’t used properly. Wait – WHAT????
Don’t believe me? Check this out: I enjoy cooking my family and my dog.
Yeesh, that sounds nasty.
Now, try adding a few commas: I enjoy cooking, my family and my dog.
OK, that sounds better. Phew…
Grammar’s funny like that – not only does it make your ideas sound better, but it also saves lives (bonus!).
Writing is done best when you keep it simple, clear, firm and direct. When you forget (or ignore) the basics, you cause confusion fast – and that’s not how your reader wants to absorb information.
Here’s 3 quick fixes to common writing mistakes:
- Stop repeating yourself. Although repeating yourself in crafty ways can sometimes be necessary, don’t go overboard with it and sound like a broken record. Try reading your copy out loud to help catch any overly repetitive sentences – if you find them, nix them.
- Be smart about transitions. If your reader needs a map to follow your writing, then you need better transitional words to stich your ideas together. Try these ones out:
Similarity – Also, In addition to, Just as, Likewise
Contrast – However, But, In spite of, On the other hand
Sequence – First, Second, Third, Next, Then, Finally
Example – For instance, For example
- Don’t ramble. Overly long, rambling sentences are a recipe for disaster. If you’ve made your point and sunk the eight ball, then it’s time to put the pen down. Continuing to drive home an already well-articulated point will only cause your reader to hit “x” every time they see your email come in. Try sticking with this easy formula to stop yourself from creating endless paragraphs:
Intro – Tell your reader you have something cool to share.
Body – Tell them about it. SIMPLY.
Conclusion – Remind them what you just told them and end with a CTA.
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