Key Writing Strategies

If you’ve ever found yourself wondering why your words don’t seem to stick, or why people aren’t engaging with what you’re saying, you’re in the right place.

In this article, we’re breaking down nine crucial rules to make sure your message isn’t just heard, but remembered.

Whether you’re crafting an email, giving a presentation, or just chatting with friends, these tips will elevate your communication game and ensure your words leave a lasting impression.

Want people to listen?

Want them to remember what you say?

Then write like you speak.


Here are nine important rules to ensure that you’re heard and remembered

  1. Keep your sentences SHORT!
  2. Choose the ACTIVE voice
    PASSIVE voice: “It is obligatory that all illumination be extinguished before the premises are vacated…”
    ACTIVE voice : “Turn off the lights when you leave…”
  3. Pick short, more conversational words.
    Wordy: “Notwithstanding…”
    Better: “In spite of…”
  4. Avoid “buzz” words
    Buzz: “Maintain a dialogue…”
    Better: “Keep talking…”
    Nonspecific: “We told them that she would take it to him…”
    Specific: “Bob and I told the committee that Anne would take the recommendation to Jack…”
  6. Avoid sweeping generalities
    Sweeping generality: “Alternative energy sources…”
    Specific: “Wind power, solar, nuclear…”
  7. Don’t use confusing words
    Confusing: “I cite that site because we’ve lost sight of where we should build…”
    Confusing: “Excitement leading up to the wedding was enervating…” (sounds like energize but actually means drain).
  8. Avoid weak words and phrases
    Weak: “This year our growth will be sustained…”
    Stronger: “This year we’ll keep growing…”Weak: “Now we must maintain our resolve…”
    Stronger: “We’ve got to keep fighting…”
  9. Keep a leash on statistics
    Statistics proliferate like rabbits, so pick the most important, round them off, and “dress” them up.
    Rabbits: “Market share increased 3.2 percent from 5 percent to 8.2 percent up to a high of 13.5 percent from a low of 9 percent last year…”
    Revised: “Market share was off more than five percent this year…”Rabbits: “Production increased 6.3 percent from 8.1 billion bbl to 10.2 billion from 2022 to 2023…”
    Revised and “dressed”: “Production was up more than 6 percent — roughly 2 billion barrels in the last year alone. That’s enough oil to heat Boston for ten years…”

By following these key writing strategies, you’ll not only capture attention but also leave a memorable imprint on your audience’s mind. It’s all about making your words count, speaking directly to the heart, and cutting through the noise with simplicity and clarity.

Next: The Six Most Common Language Mistakes