Are you looking to improve your writing skills and vocabulary? If so, you are in luck! In this blog post, we will discuss 12 tips that will help you become a better writer. We will also provide some helpful resources that can assist you in furthering your writing education.
So what are you waiting for?
Let's get started!
Some of the most common questions I get over on Youtube is;
- How can I improve my writing vocabulary?
- How can I improve on my writing skills?
- How can I improve my writing skills every day?
I often repeat the following tips, which vary from response to response. So, instead, I have decided to put them all in one place... Hopefully, these tips help you on your way and aid you in smashing through writer's block if you a struggling!
- 1. Learn And Use New Words
- 2. Real-Time Suggestions, Wherever You Write
- 3. Use a Thesaurus
- 4. Learn a New Word a Day
- 5. Look up Words You Don’t (And Do) Know
- 6. Make Your Own Vocabulary Tests
- 7. Keep a Journal
- 8. Edit Your Own Writing
- 9. Play Word Games
- 10. Read More
- 11. Write Short Stories
- 12. Enter Writing Competitions
- 13. Take An Online Writing Course
- 14. Join A Writing Group
1. Learn And Use New Words
One of the best ways to improve your writing skills and vocabulary is to use new words. When you come across a word that you do not know, look it up! This will help you expand your vocabulary and also familiarize yourself with how to use new words in context.
If you need some help learning new words, we recommend checking out the following resources:
- Merriam-Webster Dictionary: This online dictionary is a great resource for looking up words that you come across.
- Word of the Day: This website is an extension of Merriam-Webster and provides a new word each day, along with its definition, pronunciation, and example sentences.
- Vocabulary.com: This website offers a variety of games and activities to help you learn new words.
By taking the time to learn new words, you will be able to use them in your writing and impress your readers with your expansive vocabulary.
Action Step: Make a commitment to learning at least one new word each day.
2. Real-Time Suggestions, Wherever You Write
Use an app like Grammarly or Pro Writing Aid to get real-time suggestions as you write. This can be a great way to catch errors and make sure that your writing is error-free.
Grammarly is an app that checks for grammatical errors and provides suggestions on how to improve your writing.
Similarly, Pro Writing Aid is an app that checks for grammar, punctuation, style, and word choice errors.
Both of these apps are available as desktop applications and mobile apps.
Action Step: Install a writing improvement app on your computer or mobile device and use it while you write.
3. Use a Thesaurus
Another way to improve your writing skills and vocabulary is to use a thesaurus. A thesaurus can be a great tool for finding synonyms for words that you are using in your writing.
A thesaurus is an excellent tool because it allows you to find alternatives to words that you may be using too frequently, or that may not be the most precise for what you are trying to communicate.
For example, if you are writing a book about environmentalism, and you want to use the word "sustainable," but feel like it's been overused, you can look up synonyms for "sustainable" in a thesaurus and choose one that fits your particular context better.
Alternately, if you want to make sure that your language is precise, you can use a thesaurus to find more specific words than those that are listed in your dictionary.
4. Learn a New Word a Day
As mentioned previously, a great way to improve your writing skills and vocabulary is to learn a new word each day. When you learn a new word, make sure to take the time to understand its definition and how it is used in context.
You don't always need to use a dictionary or thesaurus, simply reading a new book and paying attention to words that pique your interest can work just as well.
Action Step: Make a commitment to learning one new word each day.
5. Look up Words You Don’t (And Do) Know
Any time you hear or come across a new word; research it! Don't just continue on with your day. Look at the spelling and definition of the word, and how it's used in a sentence. Not only will you be able to use the word correctly, but you'll also learn more about its meaning.
When most people think of improving their vocabulary, they think they need to know more words. And while this is definitely true, another way to improve your vocabulary is to learn how to use the words you already know.
It might sound odd, but, just as you use the same muscles for different activities, you can use the same word in multiple ways.
6. Make Your Own Vocabulary Tests
One way to make sure you're learning and using new words correctly is to test yourself.
Make a list of words, and then come up with definitions for them. Write sample sentences that use the word in different ways. Not only will this help you learn the word, but it will also help you remember how to use it.
Try coming up with your own word lists based on the topics you're writing about. If you're a science writer, for example, you might want to focus on words related to the body and biology. Or if you write about travel, you could focus on words related to different cultures and destinations.
7. Keep a Journal
One of the best ways to improve your writing skills is to keep a journal. Writing in a journal allows you to practice your writing on a regular basis, and it also helps you to come up with new ideas for articles and blog posts.
In addition, keeping a journal can help you to improve your vocabulary by forcing you to come up with new words to describe your thoughts and experiences.
Action Step: Buy a journal and start writing in it every day.
8. Edit Your Own Writing
Instead of outsourcing the editing task, take a crack at editing your own work. This will help you become more familiar with the content and also allow you to correct any mistakes.
When editing, be critical of your work and ask yourself the following questions:
- Is the content clear and concise?
- Are there any errors or typos?
- Is the tone appropriate?
- Is the information accurate?
- Is the writing engaging and interesting to read?
If you answer yes to most of these questions, then you’re on the right track. However, if you answer no to any of them, then it’s time for some more editing.
9. Play Word Games
Playing word games can help improve your vocabulary and writing skills. There are many different types of word games that you can play, such as crosswords, Scrabble, and Bananagrams.
This is a fun way to improve your vocabulary, and you can also compete with your friends to see who can come up with the most clever words as there are countless apps to do this.
One I have always enjoyed is Words With Friends. It’s a cross-platform Scrabble game that you can play with friends online.
Action Step: Download some word games onto your phone or computer and start playing!
10. Read More
Reading is a great way to improve your vocabulary and writing. Read material that is both interesting and challenging, and try to emulate the writing style of the author.
You should also try to read different mediums such as books, magazines, newspapers, and even blogs. The more you read, the better your writing skills will become.
Action Step: Actively seek out reading material that will improve your writing skills. Join a book club, subscribe to a magazine, or read the news online.
11. Write Short Stories
One of my favorite exercises to improve writing skills is writing short stories. This will help you to develop your plot, characterization, and setting skills. It will also help you to improve your vocabulary, as you will need to use a variety of words to describe the different elements of your story.
You can challenge yourself even further by submitting these stories to self-publishing platforms.
12. Enter Writing Competitions
Put yourself to the test by entering short story writing competitions. This will help you to improve your writing skills and learn how to submit your work in the correct format.
It will also give you the chance to receive feedback from experienced writers and readers, which can be invaluable in helping you to improve your work.
Not only that, but many story competitions pay money to entry winners! This could end up benefitting you in multiple ways.
Action Step: Research how to submit your writing to competitions and start entering!
13. Take An Online Writing Course
An online writing course can be a great way to improve your writing skills. There are many reputable courses available, taught by experienced professionals.
You will learn how to write in different genres, how to structure your work, how to edit and polish your writing, and more. This is an excellent way to gain the skills you need to produce high-quality work.
Action Step: Research online writing courses and choose one that best suits your needs.
14. Join A Writing Group
A writing group can be a great way to not only work on your writing chops but also to converse with like-minded individuals and learn new vocabulary words. Groups can be found both online and in-person, so do a quick Google search to find one near you.
Action Step: Join some writing groups or forums.