Do you Make Your Writing Presentable and Cogent

Peter B. GiblettStarred Page By Peter B. Giblett, 9th Mar 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Tips

There are so many opportunities to write on the Internet with a personal blog or a plethora of writing sites, including Wikinut. Truth is that more than 95 percent of posts would never be approved for publication if they were presented to a newspaper or magazine with either traditional editors and publishers. It is up to the writer to change that.

Don't hit that "Submit" or "Publish" Button!

It is all too easy to publish your material; just enter a random sequence of words and hit "Publish". With your blog it is instantly available to be seen by anyone who cares to look. Even on many of the paid publication sites it is all too easy to have low value articles published as most have automated moderation systems which do the minimum amount of quality checks on submissions and within a few hours it is published.

Obviously it is easy to be cynical about the low quality of articles being published. The real question is how to improve the value of everything published on the web; the truth is that the majority things published today will not stand the test of time; look forwards three hundred years and most of the writers of the current era will be forgotten; sunk into oblivion and forgotten; truth is we must all improve our contributions and continue to improve to be taken seriously; it is a vital part of being presentable and cogent.

As a site moderator here on Wikinut I do see large volumes of articles of varying quality, many of which would be better being rejected than being published, yet when they reach the minimum criteria for publication here then they will be published. Whilst it is true that a new writer should be encouraged and it is better they make a bad contribution than nothing at all yet each and every writer needs to take on a commitment to raise the general standard of writing on the web. They must remember that they are not punching the clock here, to make a quality contribution takes time and effort and a need to think beyond the content they are creating.

Low Value Article

The previous section stated "it is easy to have low value articles published", but what exactly is a low value article?

In part this relates to the the quality of the writing, but that is a long way from the whole definition. The truth is that even a well written article written in perfect English can be low value when you look at it from the viewpoint of the needs of Google and other search engines - this may seem perverse, but it is true. Here are a few things to think about that lower the value of your offering:

  • Direct copies (whether yours or other people's Google does not like them)
  • Small articles (under 300 words are particularly problematic)
  • Poems and short stories (sadly because these are fiction and not fact)
  • Articles without keywords or tags
  • Poor keyword selection

The focus of this article is not low value articles, but it is an aspect that has to be thought about when writing presentable, cogent and thought provoking articles but removing those items which have little value are an important part of improving the value of what is available on the web.

Presentable

Is your submission presentable? You must bear in mind that most Internet writing sites are focused on fact rather than fiction which makes our era rather different than those preceding it, when much of the great writing was presented in a fictional form. Yet, the undisputed fact is that people search the Internet for factual information such as which electric shaver, or Android phone, is best; places to eat in Hawaii and the statistics for your favourite sports team; by their nature such articles have a limited lifetime, not that it is any reason to let your writing standards drop for any submission you make.

Being presentable is largely about being effective as a writer, but there is also an element of visual impact; even highly theoretical contributions need to have visual elements in order to add impact to the written word, indeed often without visual elements the story you have to offer will seem dull and boring particularly when discussing a highly technical topic. Google may not improve the ranking of a page based on the image content, but people will remember the good and bad writers - write well and this will help you obtain repeat readers.

Cogent

There can be nothing worse than an article that starts to tackle an item of great importance then fades away and dies. Once you start a logical argument it is important to conclude the line of thought, not simply drift of in a new direction and leave your reader wondering the purpose of your monologue, this is why teachers told us the importance of creating a plan for our essays before writing a single word when we were given English lessons.

One of the common faults of those who write large volumes is knowing the intended results before they touch the keyboard, you may not know every word that will be used but you should know the general ebb and flow to be taken; that makes your submission more cogent and logical. Of course some articles are created as a running commentary on an event that is happening and it is the event that gives us the result, not the plan in the writer's mind.

Thought Provoking

Being thought provoking is largely about the subject matter being tackled, but how you present your arguments does matter as much as being presentable and cogent. From personal experience asking questions often provides a good hook to reel in the reader and make them think about the subject matter and interact better.

Are you Adding Value?

Does your contribution add value to existing discussions on the web? This is one of the key reasons for writing and making a contribution. We may wish to be recognised as a leader in our field and to do that you need to be original, thought provoking, and provide something that will cause people to come back and read other contributions you have made.

To date the author (Peter B. Giblett) has published a wide variety articles on many subjects here on Wikinut plus others on a variety of other sites, these are the most recent articles published include:

Each person has a unique voice and Wikinut is great a place for you to share some of your wisdom, insight and knowledge, you could start by adding a comment, but perhaps you need something more in which case should join Wikinut, write then become connected to others who share a passion for writing, supporting one another, and learning on Wikinut.

Tags

Adding Value, Cogent, Factual Information, Great Writing, Improve, Low Quality, Low Value Article, Peter B Giblett, Presentable, Standards, Thought Provoking, Value, Visual Impact, Writing, Writing Standards

Meet the author

author avatar Peter B. Giblett
Author of "Is your Business Ready? For the Social Media Revolution"

Social media consultant, with C-Level background.

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Comments

author avatar Songbird B
9th Mar 2014 (#)

Thought provoking and insightful article as always with you Peter. I know when I first came to Wikinut, I had never written a factual article, but I observed some of the best writers we have had on here and learned from them. You raise some excellent points on improving our writing ability..\0/x

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
10th Mar 2014 (#)

Personally I like fictional articles, but the web is what it is.

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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
9th Mar 2014 (#)

great informative information here Peter...thank you...

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author avatar MarilynDavisatTIERS
9th Mar 2014 (#)

Good afternoon, Peter, excellently written and presented. On target and stayed on track. Informative for new writers as well as a reminder for others. I appreciate your efforts. ~Marilyn

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
9th Mar 2014 (#)

Excellent points Peter. A poor article may get a few views when first published, but will not get shared and will not be shown by search engines, and as such in the long run they are a waste of time. If a person consistently posts trash they will lose followers.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
10th Mar 2014 (#)

Agreed

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author avatar Jerry Walch
10th Mar 2014 (#)

Ditto all off the above comments.

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author avatar Connie McKinney
10th Mar 2014 (#)

Great advice, Peter. Thanks for sharing.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
10th Mar 2014 (#)

All true... and outstanding points...!

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author avatar Mariah
26th Mar 2014 (#)

I second Delicia's comments.

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author avatar Ptrikha
11th Mar 2014 (#)

Valuable tips. I did follow these tips for a few of my articles on Wikinut recently.

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author avatar spirited
13th Mar 2014 (#)

"simply drift of in a new direction"

drifted past the spell checker, I think....LOL

I agree with most everything you say here Peter, but I do point out that a lot of publishers will publish rubbish too, especially if it is self published, and the writer is paying big money for it to be published in that way.

Anyone can do this for less than a $1000 or so. They will print off 50 copies of your book for you for this amount.

I am still rather ashamed that I did this once myself, my writing was pretty poor back then.

I hope it has improved a little since then by reading articles such as yours here Peter

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
14th Mar 2014 (#)

Glad to hear it &Spirited sir.

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author avatar Nancy Czerwinski
29th Nov 2015 (#)

Peter, thanks for sharing this article. I always learn from you.

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