So you have selected a topic to write about involving drywall installation. Try as you can you just can’t seem to find the words needed for this topic to make it informative and interesting. This may be due to your lack of knowledge on the subject of drywall installation. It may also be due to an inability to piece together 500 to 600 words that capture interest and motivate your readers (or, more specifically, your User’s readers).
As a Writer you are not always going to have the luxury of choosing topics that are within your area of expertise. More often than not, you will create work product that will be on subjects far from your knowledge base and sometimes fairly dry or seemingly boring. The trick for you as a writer is to apply your skills in order to create interest in anything you write, regardless of the topic and whether it is something that excites you or can be dull and dry. Here are several tips that may help you look differently at your writing style and how you can bring life to any topic.
Avoid Technical Descriptions
When writing about something that is technical in nature, you want to stay away from using technical terms in your writing. Keep your language and descriptions as simple as possible. Describing the process of combining sodium hypochlorite and ammonia to produce chloramines sounds mechanical and may lose your audience. However, it may be part of an article that describes a very common and dangerous practice that occurs in the home when people accidentally mix bleach (sodium hypochlorite) and household ammonia. It might be more engaging to describe this as a toxic and dangerous gas that can affect breathing.
The chemical experiment may sound interesting between two chemists but may not be the best way to describe this dangerous practice to parents with small children.
Use Words that Show Action
The words that you use when writing about a less than exciting topic will set the tone for your readers. Sentences that are passive and do not use descriptive terms can be as dull as the topic itself. Substituting passive verbs for active ones may be the trick you need to increase interest and raise the readability of your article. Take two sentences, using the readability function provided with most word processing programs:
The test was failed by many of the students. (100% passive)
Many of the students failed the test. (0% passive)
The first sentence is rated as completely passive since the subject (students) has the action (failing the test) being performed on it. Rewriting it as the second sentence means the subject is performing the action, making it 100% active. Active writing can bring life to any topic and make it easier to understand and a better read.
Be Specific, Clear and Concise
Describe situations and circumstances in your writing exactly as they are. Several individuals can be better described as 3 or 5 if this is the number of people “several” is describing. The use of numbers can go a long way in helping a reader see exactly what you are discussing, regardless of how technical or dry the subject. You also want to choose your words carefully, focusing on using those that precisely say what you want to say. Choose simple words over more complex ones where appropriate, understanding that it is OK to display your knowledge on the subject on advanced terms where applicable.
If you are unsure of the proper tone to take on your assignment, be sure to consult the User requesting the content and be sure you are meeting their needs. Some Users may be able to offer supplements that will give you a more in depth look on the subject matter.
You should not be afraid to attempt writing articles that are outside your area of familiarity or that may be dry. These tips should help you gain perspective on how to approach these articles and make them enjoyable for all audiences.