The Five C’s of Writing

Posted: July 18, 2016 in Storytelling
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

5csLast night I was actually dreaming about writing a post about writing. I alone and decided I better write it down. Unfortunately, I fell back asleep but this is what I remember.

Create
The first step in writing is creativity. Everyone has something to say, people are surrounded by messages. What is going to make your writing stand out from the crowd? How can you rise above the noise? You need to do more than just write words. You need to find a way to make those words connect with my heart, mind or soul. You need to make your work compelling and unavoidable. You need to get creative.

Communicate
Writing is and always will be primarily about communication. You need to have something to say and someone to say it to. Writing without an audience is called journaling. If you don;t start your page with dear diary, you have to have me (your audience) in mind as you start to create. You can tell me a story. You can bring me joy. You can challenge me. You can even hurt me but what you can’t do is ignore me.

Confuse
This may not have been the best word for this, but it starts with a C so I used it. When you’re writing, either fiction or nonfiction, if you want to keep me (the reader) engaged, one of the best ways is with a little misdirection. Maybe it’s a plot twist, a unique way of stating the facts, an example that will blow my mind. Don’t make it so confusing that I give up, but give me enough to keep me engaged and wondering what’s next.

Condense
The story must have a point and you need to get to the point. A huge word count is not necessary as long as I have all the information you wanted to convey. Have a beginning a middle and an end, say all you need to say and allow me to move forward to act on what I’ve read.

Correct
I tremble as I write this, because I know it will cause a typo, but your writing has to be correct. Unless you write colloquially or you write Chick-fil-A billboards, spelling, grammar, punctuation, etc. crucial. If you don’t, it turns on my internal editor and I start to lose your point. By the way, every reader has an internal editor. Don’t let them lose your story. Have a couple read your work before you publish.

Can you think of any other C’s?

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