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30 Days of Writing Tips – Day 16 – Learn Web Writing

writers web siteSuccess as a freelance writer includes the ability to write well for the web. More and more information is being delivered online and reading online is different than reading in print. The biggest difference is that we tend to scan the screen, probably because screens are still uncomfortable to read. (The Kindle with it’s e-ink is almost an exception.)

Because we scan on screen, short paragraphs tend to work better than long. The same is true of short sentences.

Then there’s the dreaded Search Engine Optimization. The article, SEO Can Be Pretty Simple For Writers, will help.

Copyblogger.com has an article called The Disgustingly Simple Rule for Web Writing That’s Often Hard to Swallow that illustrates these notions in the extreme. Maybe too extreme.

Until screens improve so they are as kind to the eyes as paper, I doubt we’ll see much web writing that’s truly great writing. That said, what you write for the web must communicate. As a freelance writer, that’s what you want, to communicate your ideas. Your biggest audience is probably on the web so bite the bullet and learn to write for the web.

Just for reference, there are at least 20 different kinds of online writing.

How does your writing for the web differ from your writing for print?

30 Days of Writing Tips Archive


{ 2 comments… add one }
  • It’s certainly changed the way we present our ideas, hasn’t it? I dread the SEO-driven stuff too, Anne. Mainly, I think too many people get it wrong. If it reads like you’ve jammed tons of words in there and repeated them ad nauseum, that’s doing it wrong.

    Great writing doesn’t have to be long. It has to get to the point, compel the reader to respond or act or think, and it has to be concise.
    Lori recently posted..Stuff Ive LearnedMy Profile

    • It is hard, Lori. I have to have a certain number of keywords in my wiseGEEK articles and sometimes it’s a real struggle to get the phrase in there, especially if it’s something awkward.

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