On Writing Well

Write like you speak

Write the way you talk - naturally. "Finding your writing voice" is a waste of time, you already have your voice - the one you use every day. Never say in writing what you wouldn’t comfortably say in a conversation.

Avoid fakeness, don’t be ornate or pretentious, don’t try to impress people with your vocabulary - impress them with your ideas.

Keep it simple

Use simple language. Explain the concepts in a way that a smart 8th grader could understand. If you can’t explain it simply - you don’t understand it.

Be Brief

Use short words, short sentences, short paragraphs. Cut the words that serve no function. Avoid fluff, get to the point. 99% of the books should be blog posts, 99% of the blog posts should be tweets.

Be Clear

Know what you want to express and then express it. Know your audience, find the shortest path taking them from where you are to where you want them to be. Use it as your outline.

Write With Conviction

Strong opinions are very useful to others. People who are undecided can just adopt your stance, people who disagree can solidify their stance by arguing against yours.

Read it Aloud

When you’re done writing - wait to publish until the next morning. Read everything aloud before you publish it: simplify the awkward phrases, cut boring parts, fix everything that doesn't sound like conversation.

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