Questions to ask to help organize your writing

Source: Pixabay

Individuals may approach writing in different ways, but no matter what, some logical thinking needs to be behind the final product.

This applies even to ‘artistic’ things like choosing a photo for an article, or designing a logo.

My own writing preference for a formal paper or article is to scratch out a rough outline, or to jot down a bullet-pointed list of the things I want to touch upon. With blog posts, I take a more free-flowing approach: usually not having formed yet a very clear idea of what I want my point to be, I start typing as I think and see what comes out.

Whether I start with the overall structure already in mind or it grows organically from my head and figurative pen, I always go back at some point and think through the logic of the writing.

Here are some things you might ask yourself when you’re reviewing your work:

  • What is my main point here? What is my message?
  • Does the progression of thought/ideas make sense? Does it flow? Is it not confusing?
  • Are there any gaping contradictions or loopholes? (That may be OK but should be explicitly acknowledged in the writing itself. Otherwise, it detracts from your message.)

Through the process of asking these questions, sometimes I reshuffle the order of things. Sometimes I find that my main point seems to have wandered from the original intent — in which case, I drop the original point (I take the ‘wandering’ to be a sign that I didn’t have enough material to make the original point) and read through whether I have enough to support the new message. Sometimes, I just drop the article altogether, setting it aside for another time when the idea has ripened more, or tossing it as unfeasible.

No matter your writing style or approach to writing, the point is to be aware that taking a step back and reviewing your work from a logical point of view will only enhance your final product. (And in fact, that’s what editors like myself are here for too!)

Need help with organizing your ideas in your writing? Let me help you! 

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