34 replies
Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
#skills #weak #writing
  • Profile picture of the author HDRider
    Just start writing, everyone gets better. The more you write the better you will get. I laugh at some of my earlier work.

    Go to ezine articles and do a search for your topic. Start reading. See what others are writing about, how they are doing it etc. You'll get a pretty good idea after a little while.
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    • Profile picture of the author Cali16
      Originally Posted by HDRider View Post

      Just start writing, everyone gets better. The more you write the better you will get.
      I'm amazed how often I see this. It simply isn't true. Writing isn't a "muscle" that's going to get stronger the more you use it. It's a craft. Some people write hundreds of articles and their writing doesn't improve one iota. Why? Most likely because they aren't aware of what's wrong with their writing in the first place, so they continue to make the same mistakes again and again.

      Imperfect practice will never make perfect (I'm not suggesting writing needs to be "perfect", but most should get the point I'm making).

      If you feel you lack good writing skills, two things that will help are 1) hire someone to edit it for you (and pay attention to the editing) and 2) get feedback from others (who truly know something about writing) as you go along. Without feedback it's impossible to know where you need to improve. That's why so many people never get any better. You can't learn from your mistakes if you don't even know what they are.

      I'm not saying this to discourage you at all. Rather, I hate hearing people say that all it takes to learn to write well is to "do a lot of writing". That's just one piece of a bigger puzzle.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jezreel Pigott
        Originally Posted by Cali16 View Post

        I'm amazed how often I see this. It simply isn't true. Writing isn't a "muscle" that's going to get stronger the more you use it. It's a craft. Some people write hundreds of articles and their writing doesn't improve one iota. Why? Most likely because they aren't aware of what's wrong with their writing in the first place, so they continue to make the same mistakes again and again.

        Imperfect practice will never make perfect (I'm not suggesting writing needs to be "perfect", but most should get the point I'm making).

        If you feel you lack good writing skills, two things that will help are 1) hire someone to edit it for you (and pay attention to the editing) and 2) get feedback from others (who truly know something about writing) as you go along. Without feedback it's impossible to know where you need to improve. That's why so many people never get any better. You can't learn from your mistakes if you don't even know what they are.

        I'm not saying this to discourage you at all. Rather, I hate hearing people say that all it takes to learn to write well is to "do a lot of writing". That's just one piece of a bigger puzzle.
        I completely disagree, anyone who is seriously TRYING to get better writing about something they truly are passionate about will naturally get better at communicating that passion, you've pretty much stifled the potential of budding writers by making such a statement.

        Now don't get me wrong here, you are correct in saying that someone who writes with no outlook on WHERE that writing is taking them ( Or How it's potential can be monetized, which is the ultimate goal (OR SHOULD BE for any writer)) is going on a fools errand. But there has to be a "Zero Point" somewhere where a person can begin if they are not yet a pro at their "Craft".

        I do see writing as a "Craft" . But not as one exclusive to those who are born with the "Knack" for the craft. I see it as it is, bare and infinite in its potential regardless of who may be the conduit (Writer). A form of expression used to communicate what a person FEELS, and what their OPINIONS are regarding a given subject (Topic/Niche if you will). No one starts out as an expert, we grow into our expertise by DOING, and then eventually reaching the point of TEACHING.

        Teach growth and not an "Either You Have It Or You Don't Mentality"...one leads to the other and the other leads to comments which make excellence in writing (Or anything else for that matter) seem like a gift when it is in fact a skill to be honed over a lifetime.

        There are exceptions to the rule however, but I would like to think that the patrons of this forum are smart enough to notice the difference.
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        • Profile picture of the author Cali16
          Originally Posted by Jezreel Pigott View Post

          ...you've pretty much stifled the potential of budding writers by making such a statement.
          No I didn't. Not at all. If you'd actually paid attention to what I said instead of projecting your own stuff into it (not to mention completely distorting most of what I said), you would have understood the point I was making. I'm also speaking from both personal and professional experience.

          I know several "writers" who continue to create terrible content - despite having done tons of writing, often for years. They don't get better because they don't realize what they're doing wrong. Happens all the time.

          Imperfect practice leads to imperfect results - again and again and again. You can argue against that 'til the cows come home, but it's a proven principle in life.

          Originally Posted by Jezreel Pigott View Post

          But not as one exclusive to those who are born with the "Knack" for the craft.
          Absolutely nowhere in my entire post did I say anything about having a natural talent or knack for writing. I indicated it's a skill that often can be developed, but not simply by doing it. There's more to developing any craft than practice.
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    • Profile picture of the author seoboyz01
      Originally Posted by HDRider View Post

      Just start writing, everyone gets better. The more you write the better you will get. I laugh at some of my earlier work.

      Go to ezine articles and do a search for your topic. Start reading. See what others are writing about, how they are doing it etc. You'll get a pretty good idea after a little while.
      Ezine articles has some of the lowest quality writing. What you want is to find blogs in your niche that are very popular and emulate the writing style there. That doesn't mean you should be copying what they're writing about. Just read the articles and study the style and practicing writing in that same way. Start by writing short paragraphs about similar topics. This is just for practice, not publication. Over time, add your own independent research and expand the topics. That's one way to increase your writing proficiency to become a better writer.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Singletary
    You may want to look into hiring a ghost writer or at the least an editor (one that really edits not just checks for typos).

    Another thing is that one great way to improve your writing is to write. Write, write, write and then write some more. Have someone such as a trusted friend to give you feedback. There may be forums where you can get critical feedback from writers but not sure.

    Good luck.

    Mark

    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    You need to get started. As time goes by, you will get better and better. You won't be perfect but you will improve as time goes by.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jezreel Pigott
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
    You most certainly can do all these things with weak writing skills. You seem to write very well from what I see in your post. You COMMUNICATED Your desire and EXPRESSED a willingness to start from the bottom and grow into excellence. That's the essence of writing , communication and expression.

    If you want to improve your writing, then WRITE...alot..even if its not an article or blog post or whatever. Just Write something every day about whatever comes to mind and go nuts on it, really put your heart into that single thought, dissect it and reassemble it, OWN IT!!

    You can also use dictation software like Dragon Naturally Speaking if you're more inclined to talking than writing, which i suspect might be the case. Give it a try and see how it fits, it may be the the confidence booster you need to get you churning out great posts. Have Fun!
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  • Writing is all about properly gaining experience. You don't need to be perfect. There will be people who may criticize your grammar and mistakes, but take it all in stride.

    If you have a passion for something, you should try to share it when you can. There are some people who don't have the best writing, but they continue to write good articles and posts on their sets that gets attention online.

    Just do your best. You'll get better later on as you continue to write.
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  • Profile picture of the author Peter Kontango
    just write. post your content with whatever written material you created... and do more
    you can always edit and tweak it later...
    there is no risk... you don't need to be a perfect writer... unless your niche/passion is writing... then you're in trouble.!
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    hmm

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  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    Step 1: Read a lot of American and British sites. Get comfortable.

    Step 2: Read a lot of essays written in English. Learn how to persuade people.

    Step 3: Read the ELEMENTS OF STYLE and brush up on grammar rules. There are many online resources you can use.

    Step 4: Write a lot.

    Step 5: Keep at it.

    Step 6: Never give up and never stop learning.
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  • Profile picture of the author Oliver13
    If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There's no way around these two things that I'm aware of, no shortcut.”― Stephen King
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  • Profile picture of the author ninosem
    Beliefs are one the most important factors when you start your journey online. If I’m honest, at the beginning, I didn’t stress enough to the mindset when I started online.
    You need to start thinking as a successful person does. I learn this the hard way. I thought negative all the time, but to get where you want to be you need to
    believe that you can....


    Limiting believes stop you... They stop your progress. As they stop me at my beginning online, They stop me from improving and from getting better. All have some bad experience when they start online and try to make some money online. They was unsuccessful, lose money and they start to think negative and their beliefs became limited. All this negative experiences have created some very negative believes. For example I say “my English is bad, because English is not my first language.” Well, this are believers. “You will succeed if you will believe,”

    The second common believed that making money online is complicated and not easy.
    Again that only believe, making money online ,is simple once you learn the right method and stops your limiting believes.

    I also have has limiting believes when I started online which stops me and slows down my success. I remember when I started out there. English is not my first language, I can't do this business... ? And this believes also hurt my motivation! But they are wrong! You will succeed...You just need to start!
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  • Profile picture of the author Sam Zachuth
    The more you write, the better you get at it. Even if you absolutely suck now, just write about what you want to in the context that you have chosen, then go back to it and edit until perfect. If you have poor writing skills now, you will eventually refine them a great deal; if you begin then revise until you feel it is perfect. If you are still unable to produce quality, you need further education in life in order to properly judge whether or not the writing is good.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rory Singh
    Practice Makes 'Perfect'

    But don't try to do that. Your writing skills will develop the more you 'do' it.

    But...Write like how you talk. Don't try to use a writing vocabulary that is not yours.

    Be you and write about your passion!

    People will ONLY be 'attracted' to the real you.
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    • Profile picture of the author Life Naturally
      I agree that writing can be improved over time with practice. I am not the best writer, but with time I am improving. Check out these simple tips from expert writers;

      The first draft of everything is shit. -Ernest Hemingway

      Here is my favorite quote. Who authored this quote is up for debate, but here's the quote:

      If I had more time, It would have been shorter. -Unknown

      I have began deleting many of the "filler" words I used to add and my writing has improved.

      Good luck
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    • Profile picture of the author 1byte
      Originally Posted by Rory Singh View Post

      Practice Makes 'Perfect'
      As my music teacher used to tell me over and over again, "Perfect Practice Makes Perfect."

      "What does this mean?" you might ask.

      It's simply this: you can practice writing 'til your fingers bleed, but if you don't know the fundamentals of grammar and style, you will likely not get that much better as a writer. If you keep "practicing" the same mistakes over and over, all you will learn is how to do it wrong very well.

      However, you don't need to be "perfect" to begin writing. Like any skill, it will take time--and lots of it. As mentioned by others in this thread, read and study writing that appeals to you and clearly conveys a message. Copy passages from articles or books that you like, then try to emulate the writing style in your own words.

      There are many online writing tutorial sites, find one you like and go through the lessons. It will take some time, but it will be worth the effort.

      As also mentioned, Strunk & White's "Elements of Style" is a good reference, as is the "Instant English Handbook" (out of print, hard to find) which I have used for many years. There are many others, so take a look around.

      Learning how to write well takes time and lots of practice, as well as a knowledge of the fundamentals of writing and grammar. But if you really want to be a better writer, you can improve. Start writing now, learn as you go, and you will become better writer in time.
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  • Profile picture of the author jbmarwood
    Find something you are good at and do that. If you suck at writing, how about creating videos instead? Video can do even better than writing.

    That said, your writing will improve in time. People don't care how good your writing is so long as you are authentic and providing them with value
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  • Profile picture of the author Edwin Torres
    No one started off as a great writer. It takes time, practice and dedication. Also READ BOOKS! The more books you read the better your grammar, vocabulary and sentence structure gets.
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  • Profile picture of the author JTBivens
    I can relate. I was terrified when I started. I am most likely the worlds worst when it comes to punctuation. Well I have gotten better. My wife is a grammar Nazi! But all of the other suggestions on here are right. Practice as much as you can, learn as much as you can, but what it comes down to in the end. Is going to be finding your own voice.

    Everyone talks differently, it is the same with writing! Your visitors are going to want to come back for the way you express yourself. As long as you can learn as you go, and not make it like a child has typed it all up. Then I think you will do fine!
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  • Profile picture of the author Brent Stangel
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
    What's wrong with your writing? I understand your post perfectly.

    I think you are worried without cause.
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  • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills.
    So far, nobody's asked you what those passions are. It could be significant. For example, with gaming or fan sites, it might be beneficial - or at least not detrimental - to come across as an enthusiastic amateur. In that case, as long as the content is interesting or entertaining, you're unlikely to be taken to task for less than perfect writing. However, if your passion is for, say, real estate, finance or a technical subject, your readers may expect higher standards.

    In any event, you're right to be concerned with the quality of your site's content. If much of that content involves text, listen to Cali's advice upthread and get someone who's experienced and/or qualified to edit (not just proofread) your writing and study all the corrections until you understand why they've been made. That's the fastest and most practical way to improve your skills.

    Alternatively, and depending on your budget, consider hiring a professional writer to work from your brief - choose a writer whose style resonates with you - and learn from how he/she tackles the task.

    Good luck!


    Frank
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  • Profile picture of the author Lucildoll
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
    Hi Salkema,
    Your problem may be easily solve, you do not have to write your own articles or content for your website.
    You may borrow articles that suits your websites from ezinearticles to begin with while you improve your writing skills. In the meantime I reccommend you take a look at this article I believe will give you some ideas to work with.>>http://lucildoll.hubpages.com/hub/Healthy-Writing-Tips>>

    Best wishes
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  • Profile picture of the author apocalypsejay
    one thing I do to prepare for interviews is keep a notebook handy and write down vivid vocabulary and expressions I hear and like so I can later go to it and use it in the context of my interview. Would work the same with writing I suppose. Picture Mohammed Ali and one of his float like a butterfly speeches for example.
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  • Profile picture of the author arindamb
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
    If this particular post is an indicator of your skills, I'm sure you can do the writing for now yourself. As others mentioned, it's going to get better with time. So, just aim and fire.
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  • Profile picture of the author Afiqfikri Daud
    Yes, I do agree with other warriors.

    The best thing is get the thing started, you'll get better as time goes.

    Read more articles or books in English and practice writing.

    I'm also facing this problem, but just thinking about the problem will not solve anything.
    You need to think of the solution for the problems.

    Hope this helps
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Pescetti
    First of all...

    Get specific. What type of writing attracts you? What do you want to accomplish? Do you want to make a living? If so, how? Articles and content? Copy? Writing and selling your own products? Fictional?

    Conquering different styles of writing will each require a unique kind of action.

    And no, don't just sit down and write a lot.

    You'll just keep making the same mistakes.

    Get a mentor... or observe other people's styles and mimic them.

    Post here. Do it often.

    Here's something else to think about:

    It's not just about the writing; it's about your ability to come up with and execute appealing ideas.

    I've seen some amazing writing that's just boring as heck. So figure out how to give your pieces some edge and personality.

    Speaking of personality...

    Let YOURS come through. Let your voice soar.

    Believe it or not...

    A great way to write better is using Dragon Naturally Speaking (voice to text.) Once you get the text down, clean it up. But it keep it conversational sounding.

    Again though...

    Start with figuring out what kind of writing you want to excel at. You've gotta have direction.

    The rest is all about doing.

    Writer's write, right? ;-)

    Mark
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    • Profile picture of the author seoboyz01
      Originally Posted by Mark Pescetti View Post

      Post here. Do it often.
      A lot of good, practical advice here about how to get started writing. And, writing on forums is very good practice. You can practice your technique writing conversational style, which should work whether writing ebooks or blog posts.

      On a forum, you have the chance to talk with others and if your forum posts actually make others respond back to you, then you know you have a winning style.

      Once you have a writing technique that you like, you are set for writing articles.
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  • Profile picture of the author Khemosabi
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
    Salkema,

    Your writing skills, while important, aren't the bread and butter of your potential income, depending on your passion. Your writing skills are not as weak as you seem to think. That being said, you don't need to go out and buy books.. sheesh. Read, learn and grow from this forum. That's what it's here for.

    Study the writing styles of those who you feel convey their message the best. I'm going to suggest Alexa.. read her posts, study them. I'm also going to suggest to start learning from long standing members on this forum, some on this post have given you great advice.

    To answer your question, yes, you can make a living going after your passion, whatever it may be. You're over thinking it! Get moving, ask for suggestions, take them and move forward.

    Cali16 is absolutely right. Writing is a craft, a learned skill. She gave you great advice.

    Trying to start out perfect will keep you broke faster than anything.

    ~ Theresa
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  • Profile picture of the author markeeter
    Originally Posted by Salkema View Post

    Hi everyone, I would like to start a website around my passions, however I don't know if I could succeed based on my weak writing skills. I know this can be learned, but I'm starting right off the bat with a disadvantage.

    Would you say anyone can succeed with weak writing skills, at least in the beginning?

    Could you guys recommend something to improve my writing skills?
    Hey,
    yes, you can succeed with weak writing skills too, if you are at a certain level. your english seems pretty good to me.

    To really improve your writing, you must READ and WRITE. When I was trying to improve my writing. I used to write and post my articles on Ezine, it's hard to get your articles accepted their, so I was often rejected but they gave me an idea of where the mistake was.
    I used to try to submit my article again. I read their grammer guides, and that helped a lot.

    Another thing that was recommended to me was "imitation". In this technique you take the editorial of any popular newspaper and read its message from the editor, then you close the newspaper and try to reproduce that message in your own words. Once you're done compare both, and see the difference. Try this everyday, and you'll start to change the way you write.

    Finally read at least one page a day. Buy good paperback books, and read. They'll help you boost your writing. Hope these tips help you. That's how I improved my writing, now I write for natives.
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  • Profile picture of the author DeliverMatic
    Salkema,

    Everyone has to start somewhere. I find that if you do this...it will help your writing.

    1. Brainstorm Your Topic

    2. Bullet point out the things you want to cover.

    3. Rearrange the bullet points for flow and logical order.

    4. Flesh out your bullet points (write about them)

    5. Write with an end goal in mind...What is the point of the writing, to educate, to sell?

    6. Add an Intro and an Outro (word I made up LOL)

    7. Add your own personality to it...if you are boring...pretend you are someone awesome! LOL

    Look up some of Jimmy D Browns work on writing...some great stuff out there that will help you...

    Practice makes perfect!
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  • Profile picture of the author simonbee
    Great advice from the post above...
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  • Profile picture of the author SaeKyung
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    • Profile picture of the author drmani
      There are all kinds of readers, and all kinds of tastes - and so all kinds of writing *can* have appeal in the right quarters.

      That said, you can learn to write better and practice intentionally. Or you can partner with a good writer to put your thoughts and ideas into words. A revenue-sharing arrangement can help you avoid paying for these services in the beginning, or you could barter other skills in exchange.
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