However…Making Transitions Count

A killer article has a few key components: developed, compelling lede, thought provoking closing, thorough research and smooth transitions. Writers will spend hours, if not days, combing over their research. They will take a hard look at their lede and closing to make sure each gives the desired impact. Many will check over the article for proper word usage and spelling, then send it in to the editor. Wait. You missed a spot! Transitions cannot be ignored. They give an article flow, acting as speed bumps, yellow lights and stop signs throughout the piece. Have you ever read an article [Read more…]

Too Many Articles Killed the Freelance Writing Star

Success is going to happen. As a freelance writer, if you keep plugging away, success will happen for you. Sometimes it will hit all of the sudden. A deluge of articles, projects and client meetings suddenly appear in your email box. In between giddy high fives to yourself, you quickly say yes to everything and get to work. Other times it builds slowly, like a tide coming in and you suddenly find yourself surrounded by work. Soon you’re slogging away frantically trying to meet all your deadlines and while steak for dinner is nice, you don’t really get to enjoy [Read more…]

5 Ways To Tell Your Article Angle Sucks

Coming up with article ideas or interesting angles is one of the challenges of being a freelance writer. Throw out the thoughts of being in competition with other writers, your main competition is yourself. Can you continually come up with ideas and angles? Are those angles fresh and interesting or the stale standard? Do you have the determination to mine resources for new ideas? I know, it gets tough out there. It seems there are a million “writers” and actual writers covering every topic under the sun. The internet has spawned a deluge of information and the average writer may [Read more…]

Bitesize: Subheads in Article Writing

Often an article will have a topic that is like a giant buffet or one of those burgers loaded with everything under the sun. While impressive to look at, it is best to break the whole thing down into manageable bites so that the reader isn’t overwhelmed with information and the writer isn’t overwhelmed with finding a way to transition each morsel into a delectable feast. Outlines Help When writers cull their research and outline their article before starting the writing portion of the process, they’ll find subheads tend to highlight themselves. These standouts are a part of important information [Read more…]

Three SEO Headline Writing Tips

After my post “Three Tips for Killer Web Headlines” Cheril Vernon asked a great question about SEO or search engine optimization in headlines: I would like to see more suggestions for headlines and making them SEO friendly. Is it better to put your keywords in the first part of the headline or does it make a difference? SEO writing for headlines isn’t as difficult as many make it out to be, especially traditional media journalists who often deride writing for ‘a machine’ as stifling to creativity. The key to making SEO headlines work is to make SEO a natural part [Read more…]

Three Tips for Killer Web Headlines

The other day I wrote “Down with Deb Ng! Headline Writing 101” where I touched on misleading headlines and basic, across the medium rules for writing headlines. The responses are still coming in, many people tuned in to see what dirt I had on Deb and others were ready to jump to her defense – not that she needs it because girlfriend can take care of herself! Anywho, the headline was a success and I got a few emails asking how to write a headline the right way. The parameters change depending on the genre, so today, let’s look at [Read more…]

Driving Rules for Getting to the Point with Your Lede (Lead)

The other night The Wizard of Oz was on and I watched Dorothy and her crew sing about following the yellow brick road. It was a simple instruction, but it dawned on me the yellow brick road was a terribly convoluted roadway, with twists and turns all over place. Who were the city engineers on that project? Sheesh! Some ledes are the same way. They are good enough to hook the reader, but take so long to get to the point readers lose interest and turn the page or hit the back button. Here are a few rules of the [Read more…]

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