Part of an author's job is to market themselves and their work. We keep up with our online social networks, updating Facebook and Twitter and engaging with other authors, editors, agents and readers. We blog, we're interviewed and participate in discussions on online forums and blogs. Whether we're writing books or writing Facebook updates, our number one job as a writer is to write and write well.
What makes good writing?
- Proper grammar, spelling, punctuation, word choice, etc.
- Ability to convey your message effectively
Why is it important to write well all the time?
Your writing is an asset. It's what you are selling. It's part of your brand. You're a writer. You need to prove your skill. You're expected to know how to write and write well.
Imagine a potential reader coming across an article you wrote online … and it's littered with typos, emoticons and abbreviations one would use when text messaging. It may be difficult to see what type of writing you're selling in your books.
It's important to remember, while online everyone's watching from potential readers to editors, agents and publishers. Show the world that you understand grammar, punctuation and vocabulary. Flaunt your writing skills everywhere you leave your writing, and be consistent.
When to stick with proper writing:
- Writing and/or responding to emails
- Writing, responding and/or commenting on blog posts
- Article writing
- Writing contests
- Manuscript queries, partials and submissions
- Book reviews or public reviews of any kind
- Updating social network sites
- Online interviews
When you can let it slide:
- Twitter updates (due to the 140 character limit)
- Text or instant messaging
Tips to make sure your writing is superb:
- Always use spell check
- Read it back to yourself out loud
- Have someone else look over it
- Put it away for a couple days, look over it again, and then post publically
- After publishing it (blog or online article) and you find a typo or mistake, correct it immediately
It helps to get into the habit of writing well if you do it regularly. Writing is your talent, your brand and your value. Don't abuse it by not demonstrating your skill. Do you have any tips you'd like to add?