Monday, November 19, 2012

It's Not What You Write, It's the Way That You Write It - Well, I Disagree Completely

Not long ago, I had an online article author contact me, someone who had a bit of writing experience. I mean he could really turn a phrase, and it was obvious he went to writing school, was intelligent, and quite articulate. He explained to me that credibility online is extremely important, and thus, perhaps I ought to hire him to write and/or edit my work, as he had noted that my writing is not all it could or should be.

True enough, he's right, but then again I never considered myself a writer in the first place. I know that sounds funny coming from someone with over 28,000 online articles and 289 e-Books, but it's true, I know it and anyone who reads my articles - well, they know it too. I am not a first class writer, just a writer perhaps still in training. As he was explaining his knowledge of writing and public relations to me, I kept singing that song in the back of my head; "it's not what you do, it's the way that you do it," which is an HP jingle for rebranding their copier, printer, scanner, and fax line of peripherals.

Then I thought, well, what he is really saying to me is that; "it's not what you write, it's the way that you write it," but, you know what - I think I disagree and let me tell you why. You see, if you are writing on a topic you don't know anything about, sure it might be great to make the article cute, fun to read, and turn a nifty phrase, but what about the expertise, knowledge, know-how, or experience behind it? I can't tell you how many articles I read in the news each day that are shallow, uneventful, and often just plain wrong. Why does this happen? It happens because writers think that it's more important to write well, than to have great content - I disagree with that thought process.

Now then, whereas, I am not the world's best writer, I do believe I have a hell of a lot of experience and knowledge. I'd also say it is more important the content than the writing style. Yes, in a perfect world you'd have both, but I think content trumps style, thus, "it is what you write" which is important, and while it is important to write well, aka "the way that you write it," that's not the deal breaker for me as a reader. Give me the good stuff anyway you can, and develop your writing skills as you go. That's what I did, and that's what I believe. Please consider all this and think on it.

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