• March 2010
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What is Confident Writing?

We often hear the term ‘confident writing’. What is confident writing? Don’t we all write confidently? Well, this depends – depends on how we write.  First let us define ‘confident writing’, then we’ll go on to the ‘how’.

Confident writing is when we have full faith in ourselves as writers. We write because we want to write and not because we want to please others. In other words, we don’t try to impress our readers by using fancy words or phrases. Instead, we write with the words that come naturally to us, just like in speech. In short, we are just us, no one else.

So, how can you tell if a writing is confident? Here are the tell-tale signs of confident writing:

1. The language is simple and direct. That is, the words flow as naturally as in speech. If long and hard words have been used and the language is too formal, it is obvious that a lot of effort has been put in to impress the reader. And if effort has been put in, then naturally the writer has no confidence in his natural words and style. So, what does this mean? That the writing is not confident.

If for some reason you find yourself struggling with words or ways to say things, change the topic. Write about something that you feel at ease with, something that you feel strongly about, or have personally experienced. If it’s creative writing and you’re describing a scene, think of a scene that you have personally seen and describe that. This will bring confidence in your writing.

2. There is conviction in what is being said.  Whatever the topic, it should show the writer’s conviction and confidence in it. If references have been used – like “according to experts” if it’s non-fiction, and “it seemed like” in fiction – it shows that the writer is not sure of what he/she is writing so is shifting the responsibility elsewhere. Shifting responsibilities is a sign of no confidence.

Again, if you find yourself unsure of your topic, change it to something that you’re sure of. If you want to keep to the same topic, research well before embarking on your project. Write only after you know the topic well, and can write without words like “probably”, “usually”, or “very often”.

3. A point is being made. Everything that is written should make a point. There should be proper evidence, explanation, and description of whatever is being said. Writing without a point is aimless writing, and aimless writing shows lack of confidence.

Before you start writing, make sure that you know what point you’re going to make. Do you have enough evidence to prove your point? If not, do some studying and gather enough information. Then write with confidence and be prepared to be accountable for what you say.

These three points constitute confident writing. Or have I missed a point? What else do you think constitutes confident writing?

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