1 year ago
Last edited at 2:11PM on 7/20/2011
It's a lot easier than you think and the short answer is just one word: READ.
When you read, do it with your eyes open and your brain in gear, so that you become aware of the way language is used. Read anything you like, but the better the author, the more you will learn.
I'm not talking about Shakespeare or Dickens -- the language has changed too much since their day -- but most competent novelists will get you there. (One exception is Nora Roberts. I've read her mystery stories, written under the pen name of J.D,.Robb, and if she wasn't such a brilliant story-teller I wouldn't persevere with her frequent errors.)
Reading won't make you technically perfect but it worked for me. My own writing wouldn't stand up to scrutiny by an expert, but it's good enough to get my ideas across -- and I learned how to do it by reading.
If you want to add some technical expertise I'll recommend two books -- The Elements of Style by Strunk and White which is well thought of in US universities, and Penguin Working Words.
I agree with Dozy. In order to write better you need to read more. The more you learn the better writing skills you will have. Find an author in your favorite genre and keep reading. If you think about somethingbof your own that relates to what you are reading start a writing journal. Good luck & happy reading!