Showing posts with label Writer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Writer. Show all posts

Friday, 6 February 2015

Writing Lessons from Steve Jobs

writing lessons from Steve Jobs

I really admire Mr. Steve Jobs. He was a man with a vision, who had the courage to think out-of-the-box, fight against all odds, and work towards realizing his dreams no matter how hard or unrealistic they seemed in the beginning.

I was reading about a man with one of the most creative minds in the history, and his one of the sayings left me intrigued -

“Your model for business should be ‘The Beatles’. They balanced each other beautifully, and the output in totality was better than the sum of the parts individually. That’s how a business should be.” – Steve Jobs

It made me realize how cleverly he explained us something that marketing books have been screaming all this long – “Great things in business are never done by an individual; they are done by a team!”

But, what fascinated me was his choice of the words to explain something that we already knew. His marketing genius can be understood by the fact that he related a boring marketing concept to Beatles, what people love, and instantly got his readers/listeners hooked.

That’s the power of words.

It’s time you stop calling yourself a ‘writer’. As, all we writers are essentially marketers having the power to sell even the most boring or uninspired ideas/products to the world. The only thing you need to do is choose the right words to make a difference.

Single alphabet means nothing; it’s standing in isolation seeking a purpose in life.

An alphabet gains significance only when it meets other insignificant alphabets, and together they have the capability to create History. Remember the age old saying - United We Stand, Divided We Fall?

So, what are you waiting for? You have it in you to give birth to an idea that can change the future of brands, and in turn change your lives as well.

Happy Writing.

Neha Agrawal

Saturday, 27 July 2013

15 Tips To Become A Better Writer in 45 Days

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="290"]Image 15 DIY tips to become better writer[/caption]

Even as a child, I was intrigued by the written word, so much so that it looks as if I have been reading and writing since ages now. While growing up, I remember reading stories that transcended me to a dream land where fairies & flowers were my friends, and stars lit up my room. Books soon became my best friends, as they answered everything I was searching for. They made me smile, feel sad, anxious, joyous all at once, and helped me learn life’s most important lessons while familiarizing me with the world and worldly manners.

Since then, I have realized the beauty of words and the power they command, and harbored a secret desire to be able to write like one of the several writers I cherished reading. I am not sure if I am there yet, but certainly over the years my writing has tremendously improved. I am better with words now, and know what it takes to polish ones writing skills. So, if you aspire to do wonders with your pen, you have landed up at the right place.

Why reinvent the wheel when I have already figured out 15 tips that can help you improvise your writing skills in 45 days.

1. Read – You are what you read! Everyone needs inspiration for writing, including you. Read work of writers you admire, and over the time, their excellent writing style will rub off onto you

2. Write What You Read - In the beginning you may have difficulty in starting off. So, start writing in long hand, what you read from your favorite writer. It will help you get into the flow and develop your own unique writing style

3. Get Started - Quoting Mark Twain, “the secret of getting ahead is getting started.” Just take a pen and paper or your laptop and start scribbling for at least 30 minutes daily; you will find noticeable difference in your writing and new found confidence with words in less than 20 days

4. Meet the Deadline - Writing every day is a must to achieve your dream. Make a realistic deadline (say, 500 words by 3.00 PM) and make sure the deadline is met

5. Experiment – Keep a writing pad ever ready, and put down your thoughts on paper as soon as you get an idea. Then experiment by presenting your idea in different styles, voices, and words

6. Avoid Repetition - Learn different words and their usages, and try using those words while writing. You can even edit your previous articles by using new words

7. Learn the Rules - Good writing follows pre-determined rules. Learn those rules, and then learn when and how to break them

8. Avoid Loquacity – Follow Professor Stunk’s golden words: “A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts.”

9. Use Vocabulary - Make the best use of your vocabulary, and use thesaurus to learn new words and their meanings

10. Don’t Edit the First Draft - Creating and editing are two separate processes that use different grey cells, so don’t mix the two. Never edit while creating your first draft, and feel free to express your thoughts without someone (including you) judging what you are writing. Better, switch off your monitor while typing, as you can’t edit what you can’t see

11. Ctrl S and F7 – Make a habit of pressing Ctrl S (save) as soon as you finish a line or paragraph to make sure your hours of work is saved. Also, don’t forget to hit F7 (spell-check tool) to auto-detect grammatical and language errors

12. Read out Aloud – Errors and awkward sentences come to life when you read them aloud. It even highlights the errors that slipped out of your mind in the initial edit or spell check

13. Grammar - Punctuation, correct use of commas, and periods is essential. Remember, Let’s Eat Mom? Punctuations regulate your thought flow, and can leave your text confusing when not used judiciously

14. Relax – You may be ignoring obvious errors if you are used to editing your written text just after writing. Set aside your write-up for a day or two before editing. Trust me, you will be able to look at the write-up with a fresh pair of eyes, and find errors that earlier seemed non-existent

15. Take Criticism in Your Stride – You can’t become a Stephen King or Jeffery Archer in a month or so. They too had to labor a lot to develop a distinct style of their own. While you will certainly better your writing if you write regularly for 45 days and follow mentioned above tips, but do seek opinions of fellow writers or friends on what they think about your writing. Don’t get upset or offended if the criticism is harsh, but use it constructively to amend your mistakes. Trust me, it works

Making mistakes is not always bad, as, to err is human. But you need to at least get started to commit those errors. So, start writing and commit mistakes, because even they will teach you a lesson or two!

Happy Writing,

Neha Agrawal.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Are You Sure You Want To Become A Writer?

[caption id="attachment_61" align="alignleft" width="221"]Are you sure you want to be a writer? Are you sure you want to be a writer?[/caption]

HR recruiter looked perplexed at my degrees that proclaimed ‘First division in MCA’ from a reputed university and past experience that talked about a software engineer who has worked on websites using latest web technologies and done coding using some really complex programming languages. Then she finally asked what I was anticipating, ever since I entered that office.

Are You Sure You Want To Become A Writer?

And I said YES...

It was so hard for her and everyone around to believe that why the hell someone after reading everything about computers will switch to writing. Their concern was valid, as that was soon after the notorious recession of 2008, and they believed that like many IT freshers who are not getting a dream job and trying different careers, I was trying my hand at writing and using their organization as a breakthrough.

More than that they were worried how long my ‘so called love’ with writing continue, when I will see my ex-flame in front of my eyes each single day while typing. They were sure that I will someday run back to the arms of my old love and leave them shattered and lovelorn.

To be honest, I was not very sure of making writing as my career, even though I loved it; as my big degrees and people who cared for me forced me to repent my decision. But, luckily I didn't relent and made my hobby my full-time career, and today, I am happy and earning good for myself.

The reason why I am sharing this with you is not to brag about what I earn or not, it’s just to say that there is a lot more that you can do beyond grabbing that high-profile degree or becoming a Doctor or Engineer.

Life gives every one of us a chance to realize our dreams and do something that we really love to do, no matter what it is. You can really achieve much more with your life if you do what you really like doing and are good at. It is important to follow your dreams and do whatever you aspire to, as you only have one life to fulfill your ambitions.

REMEMBER:

If you want to become a COBBLER, become one; just make sure that you become the BEST COBBLER IN THE WORLD. 

Live and love,

Neha Agrawal.