The Pen Commandments
After years as a pen for hire, I try to remember a few rules to make writing count. Here are 10 of them.
Say goodbye to gobbledygook
Paint a picture
Distinguish communication from information
Explore the language
Keep it simple
Break through the clutter
- Engages – promises relevancy, i.e. how does this matter to my life?
- Entertains – holds our attention with something beyond the facts and figures.
- Enlightens – reveals something useful that we can apply or consider differently.
Let it flow
When I stare at a blank screen or page, I’m reminded of the adage that great material isn’t written; it’s re-written. Don’t worry about getting the message right the first time. Don’t worry about the audience yet. Don’t be self-conscious. Don’t try to edit while you’re writing. When you’re done, you’ll have something. It won’t be perfect. But it’s a start. As one writer said, just shovel sand into the box so that later you can build castles.