Simple actions that will serve to review and edit your writing and attract more readers
Photo: Alexandr Vasilyev/Adobe Stock/Usage Rights
“Research shows that willpower is more important than IQ. That’s why the point isn’t to become smarter, but to become more self-disciplined.”
― Adam Kirk Smith
Our training to become writers begins very early as adolescents. Maybe for some of us even before making our way to preschool or kindergarten.
Communicating our ideas in a way that is understandable to all is a fundamental skill, needed to move through the world with a modicum of success.
Referring to an author IQ level in the title likely sent an inaccurate message. What I’m really talking about are tools, teams, actions and discipline. My own writing journey has taught me many things.
One of the most frustrating is, how elusive perfection has been. By that I simply mean free of typos or grammatical errors. It seems no matter how many times I reread or rewrite, somewhere down the road a simple error can and does still surface.
There is a big difference in the speed at which we think compared to reading or typing. This reality leaves gaps or omissions that don’t read so well.
In turn this leads to rejections from publications, it is even stated in curation guidelines with statements like this:
Is it clean? Is it free of typos and errors?
As time went on, my own writing may have been improving as far as sentence construction or story ideas. Yet somehow, typos still showed up, even after I had reread a story 3 or 4 times.
Something had to be done, but what? One friend suggested hiring an editor. A good idea no doubt, but I could not help but think this would cost more than the articles were providing in income. So, I took no action, at least not yet.
I really love audio books more than I like reading. This lead to a new inquiry. How many people are like me I wondered, preferring listening to reading?
This thought set me on an investigation inquiring about how I could offer both in my articles. The first effort left much to be desired as a computer generated service, like this one:
I just could not get past the artificial feel to it, the investigation continued.
Reading and recording them all myself seemed like too much work. Maybe I just was not fully committed yet. Plus, I wondered if this was somehow breaking some rule, I still don’t know.
“When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.” — George Orwell
Breakfast with Friends
Then one day, a friend called me based on a post he had seen on Facebook about one of my articles. When I asked what made him take time to call he said without hesitation “like mindedness.”
We made a breakfast date the next day and I invited another friend hoping to make an introduction, they had not met. He agreed. I’ve known both of these people for 20 years and we already know much about each other. As we spoke about what we were all up to, writing and reading popped up.
Jim had already set up a little recording area, and had been practicing reading published author’s work, but he could not really share it. I offered him the chance to record my work and he was delighted, Trish wanted in on the action too.
Now I have 6 different people narrating all my articles. It’s been a wonderful and productive learning experience and more evolution was to come!
The Actions Bring Benefits
Suddenly I had 6 narrators and guess what else? Each one was to become an editor as we worked out the project. Errors were found, not only typos, but phrases that were difficult to speak.
It improved my writing tremendously. All the sudden, I’m listening to my content read by another. Hearing it that way removes some of the emotion and self consciousness, that could cloud my judgement hearing my own voice.
Plus, the readers are telling me these are conversations worth having. They are all getting moved and inspired by the work and telling me. This adds fuel to my creative aspirations and builds confidence.
I am reading them myself as well. And, as I process each article’s narration I read along in the text version, making corrections or slight alterations based on what the reading uncovered.
This experience has brought me to a new process that I hope improves the work and enjoyment for you the reader or listener. I now rewrite by reading the article again silently after completion.
Then I read it again out loud because speaking slows me down and forces a closer look, experiencing the material in a new way. The way you might. The narration also exponentially increases the places where I can share the work. Places like Apple iTunes, and Soundcloud.
Videos can be made as well for YouTube.
“Only those who are intelligent can change their minds. The rest are damaged permanently due to indoctrination. A lower IQ makes a person less malleable.” ― Abhaidev
I think this is a wrap, just one last thing.
Would you prefer to listen to this article? Good, here it is. Take Three Steps to Improve Author IQ an Audio Article Podcast
Please let me know what you think!
© Christopher Boswell 2020. All Rights Reserved. Please take it seriously.