3 Writing Tips to Improve How You’re Perceived

Neglecting This Pre-Flight Check Might Prevent Your Writing from Landing Properly

Doug Lenberg inflates his balloon (after a thorough pre-flight check). Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, 2013. ~Photo by Paula High-Young.

Your Pre-flight Check is Always Important

In flying, the pre-flight check is mandatory. I suppose this piloting concept naturally crept into my writing as well.

Before I hit the send or publish button, I always put my writing and correspondence through what I call my Writing Pre-flight Check.

1979, Norm’s Pre-flight. Photo by Gil Davis, 1979.

Whether you’re composing emails to clients, blog posts, articles, or you’re mailing cards and letters to family or friends, there are a few quick things you should always do to optimize how your communications sound. Ideally, you want to come across as intelligent, credible, and thoughtful — maybe even humorous. 

It’s too easy to inadvertently trip up. So here are three quick Writing Pre-flight Check tips to help you come across the way you intended.

1.)  ALWAYS, always proof-read your content before sending or publishing. Check your spelling and tone — how you are coming across. Proof-read everything. You don’t get another chance to make the right impression.

2.)  Reading it out loud to yourself before sending or publishing can be a great help. As I read, sometimes I find something I’m unsure of. I find using editing software apps, such as “Grammarly,” can be particularly helpful in smoothing out such issues. There is a free version available, and it can make you look good and maybe even save your reputation.

3.)   And if it’s something super important, step away from it for a little while after you’ve finished writing it–but before sending. Take a break, do something else. Then come back to it a little later (an hour, a few hours, or a day) and do the proof-reading and reading aloud (perhaps a second pass). Sometimes things feel and sound different to us after we give it a little space and time to “steep.”

These are my absolute musts no matter what I’m writing. Okay, maybe I do dash-off text messages a bit too quickly for this. And that damned autocorrect will get me so many times. At least those sometimes give us something to chuckle about.

Give these a try and tell me what you think.

Thanks for visiting. Hope to see you here again soon.
Be Well,
~Paula

Paula High-Young is a freelance holistic health and personal development copywriter in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA. She’s also fluent in holistic wellness coaching, herbal medicinals, Reiki, and essential oils. You can find her website at HolisticWellnessWriters.com and connect with her on LinkedIn, at Holistic Wellness Writers on Facebook, and sometimes on Twitter. You can also find her on Flickr.

Secret Formatting Tool Helps Keep Your Writing Looking Sharp!

Hello again. Thanks for visiting.
I know–not a sexy title for a blog post, but I’ll bet you’re curious!

Writing is the Fun Part, But Then. . .
I see it all the time. People coming up with ideas, writing their hearts out–composing an article or a book, or another writing project. But then they start looking back at it. Things are. . . not matched up. “How did this header end up so big, while that looks like–is that a different. . . Font? Holy smokes!” Eeeks!

Designed by luis_molinero / Freepik

Then there’s this “little matter” of organizing all that Table of Contents stuff, getting it lined up, and. . . Oh, cr@p! The page numbers? Do the page numbers match the real contents? And what if you have to cut or add a paragraph or two? Or a page, or two? Then what? How the hell do you. . . realign. . . (muffled shriek)

Normally, I see writers “fix” these things manually with hard returns, extra spaces, tabs, and other nightmarish extraneous-coding hidden elements. If you only knew about all the extra hidden coding which gets inserted into documents because of hard returns and tabbing-over. Oh, my word! What a mess these actions make of your manuscript, and they have to be fixed before it can be submitted for printing. But I digress. extraneous hidden coding is a subject for another post.

The crazy uneven font sizes and styles, random bold or italics, and the hit or miss occasionally-centered heading here, and other left-justified headings over there. The sometimes bolded, sometimes not sub-heads are all only a few of the issues writers unknowingly stumble into and editors encounter. Have you ever had to rearrange your order of chapters? O.M.G.! It can be a headache to resolve.

How can you avoid these kinds of frustration? Or wait–Are we all doomed to hours of weeding through this part of the editing phase and just. . . figuring it out?  Hint: I have a secret weapon I use to simplify this stuff. . . and I’ll share in a couple of minutes. Continue reading “Secret Formatting Tool Helps Keep Your Writing Looking Sharp!”

We Have a “Meetup” Group for This

Hello again,

Just a quick note today to let you know I’ve formed a “Meetup” group in the Albuquerque, NM, USA area, specifically for Holistic Practitioners. It’s called”ABQ Holistic Practitioners Reaching More Clients.” 

Here’s a link to the group’s Meetup Page: Albuquerque-Holistic-Practitioners-Reaching-More-Clients

Our second meeting is coming up on Tuesday, September 12th, 2017, at 6:30 pm (Mountain Time). You can get location details at the link above.

Our first meeting was on Tuesday, August 8th, 2017. I was in the middle of participating in a 21-day Facebook Live Challenge at the time. So I decided to record our first meeting as one of my FB Live videos. I’ve since uploaded this video (and several other videos) to my YouTube Channel, at Paula High’s YouTube Channel

If you’d prefer the specific link to the recording of our first meeting of the “ABQ Holistic Practitioners Reaching More Clients” it’s here:

I figured this way, if anyone is interested in our group, they can watch the video and get a general flavor.

I expect the meetings to keep getting better because as word gets out, more and more people will attend. The more people we have attending, the more interesting it becomes and the more we can all share and support one another.

That’s about it for now. I’m gradually getting things put together for the biz. I’m in the process of brainstorming topic ideas and scheduling posts.

Be Well,
~Paula

Welcome!


Welcome to Holistic Wellness Writers
.

I’m Paula, writer-editor and writing/communications coach. Believe it or not, it’s all connected. It’s all a part of how you come across to your potential clients.

Whether you are writing a book, writing a blog, doing speaking engagements, meeting new potential clients, building the platform for your book, or merely working on your everyday forms of reaching out to attract clients– it’s all about how you come across.

Making the Best Impression You Can Make

You only have a few seconds to make an impression– somewhere between, “Oh– I want to keep reading this.” and “Oops, I’m in the wrong place.” or even, “Whoa, this is crap, I’m outta here.”

And most of the time, you won’t have an opportunity for “do-overs” to make a better impression. Once you’ve lost a reader (a/k/a– potential client), they may well be lost forever–even if you could have helped them. They’re gone. We all need to take care of how we present.

A Case in Point, & Why I’m Here

As administrative support personnel over a few decades, I spent years writing and editing for bosses. I could often see what they couldn’t. I’ve also been a writer at heart since I was a  kid. Maybe it’s why I finally chose to focus my university degree on Communications.

But as I was earning my Holistic Health Coach certification through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition® (IIN®), my path began to reveal itself to me.

At IIN®, I participated in several student discussion groups. I loved hearing the various views on holistic health from my many classmates. We shared a lot of engaging conversations. Sometimes the energy was electric. I’d found my “tribe.” We all shared a great respect for one another as well.

Later, several of them tried their hand at blogging– thinking it was simple enough. A few seemed to be naturals. But others came back, fretting about how they thought nobody was taking them seriously or they couldn’t seem to get readers to stay. I frequently went in search of their posts. What I discovered surprised me, but I learned something.

Many people are fine with dashing off a bunch of words and thoughts, popping them into a few paragraphs, and a blog post. They call it good. But is it? Even if they’re great thoughts, can you expect people to tune in each week for more if it’s not well composed?

But the real question–the one which matters most:
What impressions are your readers taking in?

If reading something they proudly posted left us wondering how they could sound so smart in discussions and yet, in writing come across so. . . woefully lacking finesse–  Leaving us thinking:
Why would I believe anything they said, based on what they wrote here?

It won’t win over clients. Even if we know, you’re credible and just don’t come across as well in writing.

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen it. Let’s just say often their writing needed some reworking to shine their true brilliance.

It’s Not Your Fault! 
This is a new era of instant information– and frankly, information overload. Information is everywhere. Attention spans are shrinking. You don’t have much time to pique your reader’s interest and keep them engaged. Most folks weren’t taught how to do it, and it can be tricky.

Holistic Practitioners, like all entrepreneurs, are busy.  Right? You know you need to engage with your potential clients, but you feel short on time. How can you pull off the “Great Client Attraction Caper?”

I can help.

In the coming weeks and months, I’ll gradually explain the various reasons why it’s so important to come across as intelligently, wisely, credibly, and polished as possible.

You can do all that and still let your unique personality shine through– as a matter of fact, it’s essential. I can help you find the right combination to help you shine out into the world– to your potential clients, and finally, to your Ideal Clients.

So please stick with me as I build here. You’re going to want to see what I have to offer you.
More to come soon. . .

In the meantime, Be Well & Shine on.
~Paula