I am not an expert on written skill, but most people are so poor at it that they make me look good. Below is more from Chapter 8--Written Communications from my e-book, Leadership for New Managers: Book Two, http://smashwords.com/b/300090. Use coupon code WL23B for a free copy. We are discussing the various types of written communications.
2. Effective Writing
The ability to write well is a necessity in today’s information hungry world. In an article, Robert Perry, suggests a five-step process for effective writing.
The first step is prewriting. Writing effectively requires three key elements: the purpose for writing, the audience, and the occasion. Clearly state these three elements. I recommend turning off the auto-correction feature on word processing software. It will change unfamiliar words to undesirable
b. Rough draft(s)
The second step is to create a rough draft. Begin with getting all of the information on paper, while keeping the purpose, audience, and occasion in mind. Do not worry about spelling, structure, or complete sentences at this point; it is important to write freely and fast to capture the ideas. Sometimes it helps to take a break and write for more than one sitting.
Here are some suggestions on writing clearly and effectively:
-Omit no key words. Do not make up words. Use plain words.
-Avoid overstuffing sentences.
-Avoid multi-noun modifiers.
-Use the active voice whenever possible, not the passive voice.
-Use uncomplicated sentences.
-Avoid long introductory phase; get right to the point.
-Avoid needless repetition.
-Be concise in word usage.
-Use a topic sentence to introduce the central idea.
-Leave out irrelevant details.