Want to Become a Better Writer? Here Are Tips from Neville Medhora
A big part of the reading challenge that I am hosting, is that you become more marketable and valuable to yourself, employer, and clients, at the end of 52 weeks. During the year, you read books that give your mind an intellectual workout. You read books to learn new skills. You read books to become better at your craft. Among the books on my reading list for this year, are several books to help me become a better writer. Reading a book is never enough, it’s the practice – the application of what you learn – that makes you better at your craft. This Book Will Teach You to Write Better by Neville Medhora, has a few good tips. The book is very, very short. Did I say the book is short? You can read it in under 45 minutes – that’s how short it is.
I took a lot of notes while reading This Book Will Teach You to Write Better by Neville Medhora, so it took me a little longer to work my way through it. I reflected on what I was reading. When reading books during the Read the World Challenge, I am not sprinting, but running a marathon. I want to absorb the information, make it mine, so I can apply it. What I like most about this book, are the examples that demonstrate how to properly use the concepts.
Related: Notes on Several Short Sentences About Writing by Verlyn Klinkenborg
Table of Contents: Quick Links to Information on This Page
How to Become a Better Writer – The Usual Suspects
Like most books on writing, This Book Will Teach You to Write Better by Neville Medhora, has some of the standard information. That’s okay. It wouldn’t be a book on writing if that information was missing. As a writer, you are a communicator, and part of that role is to transfer information to another person. With that in mind, it is your responsibility to write in such a way, that the reader wants to read what you have to say.
When you write, think about this statement: The readers do not care about YOU, they care about THEMSELVES. Repeat that a few times to allow it to sink in. When you write, think about the reader, how can the information help him or her? What benefit does the customer get? Describe everything a person is interested in, in the article. Describe what’s going to happen in the article. Let people know what benefit they are going to get. If you want people to listen to what you have to say, you have to be interesting. These make up the foundation of good writing. Perhaps that’s why many writing books leave them out – because it’s so basic. There are times when we have to get back to the basics.
How to Become a Better Writer – Write Casual Copy
There is a difference between writing a business document, and writing a blog post or copy to sell your product or service. In This Book Will Teach You to Write Better by Neville Medhora, the author says that we should write casual copy. Pretend that a friend is sitting across from you. Instead of writing, have a conversation with her, about what you would write. The way you talk to a friend, is very different from the way you would write the message. And that’s the point – start writing the way you talk. This enables you to draw the readers in. Remember, it’s the message, and not the person, that makes something contagious. The message has to be interesting and engaging.
- Transcribe the pretend conversation you had with your friend.
- Keep the interesting parts and delete the boring ones.
- Don’t be clever, be clear.
- A good copywriter doesn’t try to impress; he tries to inform.
- People respond to what is new, novel or helpful.
- You have to make people want to pay attention.
It is worth noting that “New” information doesn’t have a lasting impact. With “Novel” information, ask if it will garner the right attention. Providing information that is “Helpful” is a useful tactic. That’s why “How-To” articles are so popular.
How to Become a Better Writer – The AIDA Framework
A – Attention
I – Interest
D – Desire
A – Action
The first sentence in your copy should grab readers’ ATTENTION. After you have their attention, you go deeper to INTEREST them. You do this by sharing interesting facts. You make them DESIRE what you are offering. If you did your job, they will want what you are offering. Show and tell them how your solution is the answer to their problem. Then you get them to take ACTION. That means you get them to buy, click on a link, or take whatever action you want them to. Don’t forget to describe how to take action – you shouldn’t leave your reading hanging, trying to figure out what to do next.
When using the AIDA Framework, think about writing to one person. To master the AIDA Framework, you have to know your market. For a second, be your market, you’ll know what customers want. Additionally, also have a composite of the average customer you’re trying to sell to. Think about your customers, what are her problems? What are her goals? What are her desires? Knowing this information gives you insights into what to include in the copy.
How to Become a Better Writer – Headline Formula
Writing headlines is not a strength for me, so I was very appreciative of this information in This Book Will Teach You to Write Better by Neville Medhora.
[End result customer wants] + [Specific time period] + [Address the objections]
[Triple the conversions on your ecommerce store] + [in 3 days] + [or I’ll refund your money]
[Wipe away your debt] + [before your tax return is due] + [so the IRS won’t call]”
There are three types of headlines:
- Competitive Headline – Shows how you can beat others.
- Benefit Driven – Shows the benefits of the product.
- Inspirational – Shows that even you can do something.
Although This Book Will Teach You to Write Better by Neville Medhora is a very short book, it’s chock full of information to help you become a better writer. I recommend this easy to read book, because you’ll be able to use some of the information right away.
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