Monthly Archives: November 2013

How to Write a Conclusion that Satisfies Your Reader

Conclusions, how to write them in such a way that your reader feels grateful, thankful, relieved and satisfied…dare I say privileged?

While it’s impossible to please everyone, there are methods writers have been using for some time now that may be of assistance. Whether you’re a novelist, journalist, student, internet marketer or blogger it doesn’t matter. Everyone knows how important conclusions are, and readers carry certain expectations with them when they arrive. They expect to be satisfied.

How to Write a Conclusion

We’ll begin with the most powerful tip first and then work our way down the list.

Tip #1: Consume 10 Amazing & Relevant Conclusions

Go out and get ten of the most prolific works relevant to whatever subject you intend to write about. Be specific and go straight to the contemporary title holders. What niche are you writing in and for? Who is your audience and who do they feel are the authoritative wordsmiths?

Example #1: If you’re an Urban Fantasy writer with a thing for Vampire love triangles and eBook series, then go straight to the top 10 in Amazon’s “free” bestseller list. There are always new big hitters in every genre on the Free Kindle Boards. Wait, they’ve got 500 reviews? What are their conclusions like and what are their readers saying about them?

Example #2: If you’re an online affiliate marketer (where conclusions and final calls to action mean success or failure) then it’s simple. Who are the best affiliates for any given product? Find the 10 most highly rated affiliate articles in Google first page search results and devour them. How did they build up to the end? Why did they get such an incredible amount of comments and social media engagement?

This exercise conveys truths and experience to you that nothing else can compete with. It’s experimental knowledge, rather than something purely conceptual. The trick is sticking to your genre or niche, so you can clearly see what’s working.

Tip #2: Connect the Dots Backwards

Steve Jobs was one of the men who brought this concept into the tech-savvy culture. Start from the end user-experience, the ideal model, and work your way backwards. The Academy Award-winning screenwriter and American novelist John Irving is known for beginning all of his novels with the last sentence.

Why not start from the ending and work your way backwards? Now, Mr. Irving certainly doesn’t write novels in reverse. But, when it comes to wire-framing and mentally outlining what you plan to accomplish, you can feasibly make the first thing you write the last line, paragraph or final scene.

  • The deeper and more real you make it, the more powerful your overall perception of the total task will be. With the ending always completely in focus, everything else is influenced.
  • Become the reader and feel what you want them to feel. See what you want them to see. Visualize it until you know your exact destination.

Tip #3: Progressively Deepen Involvement & Connection

Some might argue that by the time readers arrive at your conclusion over half of the heavy lifting should be done. It’s about effectively building momentum at a rate that neither bores nor mentally fatigues them.

  • Objectively, where does the conclusion really begin? It’s hard to say when you get to thinking about it. Especially if you begin your work with the last sentence.
  • There are countless writing techniques at your disposal to deepen the reader’s personal, imaginative and emotional investment in the writing. Use and personalize them.

See your writing as a step by step process that should consistently and systematically build up tension. Conclusions are always where readers know they’re headed. They just don’t know what to expect. Speaking of which…

Tip #4: Give Them the Unexpected

Professional public speakers are the first to tell you that it’s the presence they leave on the stage when they’re done that makes all the difference. For most of the people in that audience, the last few minutes are the ones they’ll remember the longest. Those and the first couple.

Drop some intellectual napalm out of nowhere! Set fire to what, by design, you had them expecting. This is either going to sway them so deeply they’ll bow at your proverbial feet, or they’ll ash out, cursing, wailing…and they’ll never forget what you wrote for the rest of their lives.

Either way the impression is solidified. If that’s one of your goals, similar to a public speaker’s, then this is definitely a reliable method to consider.

Tip #5: Whenever Possible, Make Closure Bittersweet

Obviously this won’t apply to everyone, but whenever you can add a little pinch you should do so. Bittersweet is closer to reality. It seems more authentic. We crave closure, hope for the best, but understand that oftentimes even the most amazing and fulfilling closure can come with a price.

5 Persuasive Writing Techniques: Creative Confidence

Writing itself, whether fiction or otherwise, is a persuasive art. Right this moment you’re either being convinced or persuaded into moving onto the next sentence, or not. The persuasive ability of this informative web article is directly linked to the value you expect to receive.

You desire to be a more persuasive writer. You yearn to feel creative juices churn inside, and confident in your ability to lead readers from one sentence, subtitle or bullet-point to the next.

Persuasive Writing Techniques

Below are 5 persuasive writing techniques that will undoubtedly help you cover some ground.

Technique #1: Concentrate on Beginnings & Endings

The most persuasive parts of writing are typically located at the beginning and the end of things. Things like chapters, sections or lists. That initial 10%. Come in swinging and go out with a roar (of a dreadful whisper). Taking the liberty to illustrate this point, you’ll see that the first and last words of the sentences below are highlighted.

  • Analyze your writing bit by bit to see if there are words in the beginnings and endings which could be removed or replaced.
  • Jumpstart certain important sentences/parts with a more exciting word, one that asks the reader to become more mentally involved.
  • Strike the fine line between being imaginative and being absolutely to the point and direct.

Don’t go nuts with this technique. All that you need to do is make yourself more aware of how you begin and end your messages. You’ll start to build a connective framework that links things together in a more persuasive way.

Technique #2: Persuasion is Action

The vast majority of the decisions we make in our day to day lives are based on emotion. Actually, when you get right down to it, the lion’s share of all human culture is based on pure unrestrained imagination.

  • Remember that many of us are programmed to expect entertainment whenever we put our faces in front of a “screen.” People read using tablets, laptops, smartphones, iPods, desktops, eReaders etc. All the same things they use for entertainment.
  • To entertain the imagination your writing must move, act, travel, perform and do. The connective tissue and focus on beginnings and endings help you take the reader somewhere.
  • Make your writing travel. Go somewhere. Do something. Be something. Even if you’re just writing product descriptions for Cowboy hats. If you want to persuade people to buy that hat, take’em to a rodeo!

Technique #3: Re-envision Creativity as a Science

Professional web-based article writers have no clue what “writer’s block” even is. In the same way someone who’s never smoked in their lives has no conception of a “nic-fit.” Imagine pumping out 50 articles in one week at 500-800 words long…on 10 different subjects at least 3 weeks of every month.

In case you’re wondering, in that scenario we’re talking about 25,000 to 40,000 words a week, or roughly 100,000 words a month. We’re just ball-parking here. The idea is that “creativity” is more of a science than an art when you don’t have the luxury to sit around wasting time on some hypothetical “writer’s block” phenomenon.

  • Write first, ask questions later.
  • Study up on how to “Kill your darlings.”
  • Once “creativity” is no longer perceived as something you cannot control, it turns into a switch you can flip on or off at will.

Technique #4: Create Character of Your Ideal Reader Beforehand

This is a big one and it goes for most forms of sales, fiction and non-fiction writing. Before you compose something that’s meant to persuade, create three mental prototypes of your ideal reader.

  • Who exactly are you persuading and what exactly is it you want them to do, experience or feel?
  • Create a male and female version of your ideal reader, regardless of whether you’re writing about beer or bras.
  • This exercise in and of itself is going to make you 10% more persuasive even if you give it 3 minutes of thought before writing the first word.

Sounds simple, right? 90% of the writers who are, have been or ever will fail to do this.
They focus on why they’re writing, what they’re writing about and in general who they’re writing for. Many probably know what they want the reader to do, but they don’t REALLY try to become the reader.

Technique #5: Compose Mountains of Advertorial Copy

The question is this: if it takes roughly 10,000 hours of “practice” before we can claim to have mastered something, how much writing does it take? How much persuasive writing equals 10,000 hours of practice?

No one knows for sure, but let’s go back to that hypothetical article writer from before in our discussion. Would it be unreasonable to say that someone could claim to have mastered article writing if they wrote 10,000 of them? That’s a round estimate figure of 5-8 million words.

On, how many subjects? It boggles the mind. The point is that the #1 best way to become a prolific and profound persuasive writer is to start writing and don’t look back.

How do you manage to persuade the reader? Do you think these approaches could work for you? Let us know in comments!