Aurora, a language learner from Italy, gives her perspective on how she has become a better writer in English.
- Brainstorming and planning – these are especially useful for essays or longish compositions or reports as you may need to prepare an initial draft. Think about your position, your ideas and who you are writing to.
- Be simple, clear and relevant – make sure your reader can understand what you’ve written about and what your message is. Always stick to the topic!
- Three is a magic number – try to use up to (and preferably no more than) three elements. For example no more than three adjectives before a noun, three examples to support an idea or three main parts in an essay etc. It gives your writing a certain rhythm.
- Keep it short! In Italian it is normal to write long sentences but this is not true in English. Try to use short sentences rather than long and complicated ones. This will help conveying the meaning more clearly and makes it easier for you if you are unsure about English grammar!
- Check that you are using the appropriate style and register. Think about the type of text you are writing and who is going to read it. For instance, a neutral and impersonal style for a business report.
- Be interesting – spice up your language using synonyms and metaphors. A thesaurus is really useful!
- Last but not least… check your spelling! A good way of ensuring that there are no spelling mistakes is to read your piece of writing backwards. Don’t depend on your computer, for example it will consider both ‘hear’ and ‘her’ to be correct!