Every writer has a unique way of putting words together to facilitate understanding for readers. The writing style is a writer’s distinct way of telling a story or sharing detailed information with the readers across various forms of content creation. Style can vary, depending on the writer, the subject, the client, and the target audience. Ultimately, the writing style reflects the writer’s tone, personality, and voice to ensure the communication of ideas.
It is imperative for writers to develop their ability to express their ideas consistently, adapt new writing measures, and improve their writing overall techniques. However, building authenticity in style can pose a challenge to them.
Below are six ways you can successfully develop your style:
- Practice experience-based writing
Putting words together is always easier when it is from accumulated experiences in your life or environment. Writing based on personal recollections presents your uniqueness and tone of writing. Always present your experiences as simple and vividly as possible while avoiding the use of clichés and unnecessary embellishments.
- Be consistent
Consistency is vital in developing a writing style. A writer should be consistent in the use of words and tone of communication. It is also important to adopt a regular writing habit. Being consistent with the creation of content helps you to develop grit and pedigree. For example, you can write consistently on social media or in a private journal, with a target of writing a paragraph, one or two pages daily. In addition, consistency in writing will reinforce your confidence and sharpen your skills.
- Expand your learning capacity
To develop an authentic style, you must read extensively. Be open to the world around you, especially through the materials you read. A reader, they say, lives a thousand lives. Reading other authors’ works enables you to improve your writing skill and style. Authors such as Chinua Achebe, Sefi Atta, J P Clark, and Margaret Atwood own unique styles established over their writing history. Reading wide and with enthusiasm will expand your mind, vocabulary and writing style.
- Always edit your work
Edit your finished work to remove confusing and unnecessary words. Editing is essential in writing to shed the weight of filler words and sentences that could mislead, affect logical coherence or even engender disinterest in your readers. Use editing tools such as Grammarly to keep your content appealing and error-free.
- Conciseness and simplicity are key
Long sentences complicate reading and overall comprehension. Therefore, writing in short sentences is usually encouraged because it conveys clarity and aids the flow of your ideas. It also limits your exposure to the pitfalls of excessive punctuation and improper sentence construction. However, balanced use of long and short sentences is best.
- Review and self-appraise
It is often recommended that you read a finished work on three different occasions before proceeding with production. When you read your work several times before it gets to your editor, you evaluate your work from a reader’s viewpoint. Doing so will help you decide if your writing has conveyed its original message clearly and coherently. In addition, rereading your work will help you to listen and define your voice as a writer.