Whether you write for pleasure or as part of your job, you likely wish to improve and expand your skills. There are a few different ways you can do this.
Yes, this is obvious, but many people don’t do it to the extent that they should. When practicing your writing, it doesn’t necessarily have to be for something important. Just jot down things that come to mind and revisit them later. This can be a great way to cultivate ideas that prove extremely useful later on.
It also helps to establish a time when you will practice. If the inspiration seems like it is not there, try anyway. You might be surprised by what you come up with.
Have the Basics Down
Programs like Word can help you with basics like spelling and grammar, but to truly be a good writer, you need to know these skills on your own. Also, there will be times when you will have to write and, horrors, not have a computer program to point out your mistakes!
Inspiration can be both fleeting and hard to come by in the first place. Don’t expect the magic to happen every time you sit down at the keyboard.
Also, learn to accept that your first draft often is not so hot. There may be good components there, but they need finessing. Accepting criticism with good humor and understanding also helps. View it as a learning experience that improves your writing.
Some writers whip through a draft and immediately send it to editing. First off, you should go over your work at least once before submission because it is not the editor’s job to refashion something that is bad. Second, self-editing allows you to clearly see areas where you are weak. Tightening your work can make a real difference and if you are the one doing so, you know it will not stray from your original intention.