In the online and email communication world, writing solid copy makes all the difference.
Writing communicates your ideas with others and in the online world where words spread like fire, it is crucial to write well. Doesn’t matter if you are an amateur or a seasoned writer, we all make a lot of mistakes.
What Will you Gain by the End of this Blog?
- Why should one write online?
- Top common mistakes
- Tools for Plagiarism
- Apps for learning English
- Resources to build your creativity
Why We Write Online?
1. Building a Platform
By building an online platform, you increase the ability to reach people. If you wish to approach editors and agents with your written piece, a blog with several hundred readers can boost your chances of acceptance.
Even if you are the single-handed driver of the blog, it is all the more powerful tool. With that, you can offer services like editing, freelance writing etc via your blog.
2. A Part of the Blogging Community
The online world is a great place to be with like-minded people and thereby, share, build, and grow your thoughts & give your career a push.
3. Blog = Website
Most of us use blogging software like WordPress to build and manage our website. WordPress is easy and straightforward to use!
4. You Can Earn $$$
On an average, the money paid ranges from $20-$300 per post, depending on the complexity and length. Around $50 for a 750-word post is a decent amount.
Top Common Mistakes While Writing Online
Said that, it is nearly impossible to make money if you write a piece full of mistakes.
In a world of 2 million blogs published per day, how are you going to make your blog noticed with so many flaws?
Even after years of learning English in school, we mess up! If you make mistakes in grammar, there is a likelihood you will slip by it particularly when you are self-editing.
By learning to recognize these errors, you can improve your blog/writing piece and thereby avoid common writing mistakes in the future.
Here are top common mistakes A LOT of people make:
1. They’re vs Their vs There
- They’re is a contraction for ‘they are’.
- Their refers to something owned by a group.
- There refers to a place.
Even if you know the difference between these three, it is important to double check it.
How to use all three: They’re going there, I heard their food is amazing!
2. Your vs You’re
This is one of the common mistakes made by people writing online.
- ‘Your’ refers to something you own.
- You’re (You are) is actually being something.
For instance, you’re going slow, you’ll miss your bus!
“Your” is possessive and “you’re” refers to you are. Do grammar check before you hit publish!
3. Its vs It’s
This one confuses even the seasoned writers.
- Its is possessive.
- It’s is a contraction of ‘It is’.
The reason why most of the writers get confused with it’s is because it has an ‘s after it which normally indicates possession. However, in this case, it’s is a possession.
4. Incomplete Comparisons
Well, this one is not even realized by many of us. When a writing piece says, ‘Our services are better and stronger’. But better and stronger than what? To their earlier services or better than their competitors’ services?
When someone is comparing to something else, it is highly important to clarify what that ‘something else’ is otherwise it becomes ambiguous and your readers won’t be able to make out what you mean! And no one wants to annoy their readers.
5. Passive Voice
Don’t use a lot of passive voice! Active voice makes your copy look straight and clear.
Let’s us understand this point with the help of an example…
- I will clean the house every weekend (active)
- The house will be cleaned by me every weekend (passive)
In active voice, the subject performs the action stated by the verb whereas, in the passive voice, the subject is acted upon by the verb.
Using passive voice means a lot of jumbled and weak sentences.
Note: Make a mental note in order to avoid these mistakes in the future.
Tools for Plagiarism
Taking someone else’s ideas and portraying them as your own means plagiarism. With billion of information available in our digital world, technology has led to a hike in this phenomenon.
- Easy to use
- Cent percent free
- Registered users can perform 50 searches in a day.
- It has the options of uploading a text file, the URL of the content destination required to be checked or copy-pasting the text directly.
- Only 1 search per day can be performed by an unregistered user.
- The entire website can be scanned via this tool.
- It finds content duplication in over 60 trillion pages from the internet.
- It supports multiple file formats in any language.
- This tool allows you to integrate CopyLeaks service and includes it as part of your product.
- To use, you will have to create an account.
- It is available for online content only.
- It gives title validation.
- Offers readability statistics.
- This plagiarism tool is developed and maintained by graduate students and linguistics professionals.
- It can’t save reports.
- It supports more than 190 languages.
- There is a free download of plagiarism software for windows.
- Plagiarisma searches website content from a URL.
- The report given by this tool is for exact matches only.
- Revamping the text to generate unique content facilitates plagiarism.
- Even after being registered, you can only scan documents 3 times a day.
- It is a cent percent free tool.
- There are simple and detailed instructions.
- The ‘Author’ option allows for checking if someone else has plagiarized your work online.
- It doesn’t require installation or download.
- You will need to hit ‘Enter’ after each phrase since the tool searches phrases separately.
Apps for Learning English
No one can ignore a bad English!
Will you buy a magazine if there are obvious spelling errors, incorrect use of grammar, or incomplete sentences? Then why will someone else look at your copy (which is probably full of flaws) and not other well-written pieces of content?
Here is a list of best mobile apps that you can use to learn English, improve your grammar, and build English skills!
1. Memrise – Learn Languages Free
With some easy and creative ways to remember words for learning English, Memrise helps the user to expand their vocabulary in an effective way. It offers an offline mode to continue learning so that your learning process is not inhibited by internet connection.
2. Duolingo – Learn Languages for Free
One of the best English apps today, Duolingo is highly recommended for those taking baby steps in the English language. It is a gamified learning system that helps you learn English efficiently by spending 20 minutes a day.
This app structures your lessons that teach you 7 new words based on a topic and points are awarded soon after completion of the lessons.
3. Learn Languages – busuu
This mobile app helps you learn the English language on the go and the quality of lessons is ensured as the app is based on CEFR language framework. The lessons range from beginner to advanced via writing practice, tests, comprehensive vocabulary, and lesson dialogue.
4. LearnEnglish Grammar (UK edition)
This is an interactive app that is designed to improve your grammar. This is an advanced level app as it helps in improving English grammar in a detailed way. LearnEnglish Grammar covers 12 grammar topics with 20 activities per topic for English learners.
5. Babbel – Learn Languages
It is a great language app that has a strong focus on vocabulary. It also helps users learn and understand a language by repeating and completing phrases. Babbel has 4 types of approaches – Fill in the blanks, Spelling, Picture Recognition, and Sound Recognition. This app will help you a lot if you are keen on improving your vocabulary.
As their tagline suggests, Play, understand, and learn, Babbel will ensure you learn effectively!
This is probably one of the best tools right now which proof-read your written content for detailed Grammar mistakes. It a tool that teaches you all the basics and the intermediate level of English Grammar. In terms of interface, both the mobile app and web version is quite rich and stands out from most of the apps.
Resources to Build & Grow your Creativity
Fortunately, there are many useful resources that make it easier build on your existing skills and learn new ones. Here is a list of dedicated sites that help professional writers, bloggers, and students improve their techniques.
Blogs help you learn more about what it takes to get a book published, brush up your skills, and profession of writing.
a) The Creative Penn
The driver force of The Creative Penn, Joanna Penn gives insights on writing, publishing, and marketing on this blog.
Tips on improving the business, marketing, and content of a blog are offered on Copyblogger. This is a must for any writer who wishes to gain readership on the digital platform.
2. Business Matters
With the help of Business and Legal related tools, you can get assignments in the best online business programs, create a freelance writing business, etc.
a) Creative Commons
This tool provides you with free tools that help you with easily mark your creative work with the freedoms you want it to carry.
You can use this free service in order to learn if anyone has copied your material or work.
3. Citation and Style Guides
Don’t know how to deal with citations and certain styles? These guides will help you ensure that you know how to correctly cite your sources and stick to specific writing styles.
a) APA Style
On this blog, you will get an access to the fundamentals of American Psychological Association style, a lot of reference material, and updates on specific style elements.
b) Associated Press Style
Are you working on a journalistic piece? You will need to ensure that you follow AP style. This guide will help you learn the fundamentals of press style.
4. Improve English Skills
Even seasoned writers need help with their language and writing skills. These resources will help you learn about writing well online.
a) Common Errors in English Usage
Not sure if effect or affect is to be used? This resource will guide and help you to avoid some of the most common mistakes in English usage.
b) English Practice
With the help of English Practice, you can improve your writing and grammar by practicing effectively.
5. Information and Data
Research is fundamental to writing. Without, substantial information, writing will be vague. Offering access to a wide range of data, primary, and information resources.
This site is an almanac, thesaurus, dictionary, and encyclopedia compiled into one.
Wikipedia is a great way to keep yourself aware of the basic information and find out where to look for additional references. However, it should not be your sole source for fetching information.
6. News Digests
No need to visit every single source in order to be aware of your surroundings. With news Digest, you can save your time by going through news roundups and current stories from digests.
This resource aggregates blog posts and news from hundreds of sites. In order to narrow things down, you can select a topic of your interest and thereby, get updates about that specific area of interest.
Here you will get links to some of the day’s most popular news stories.
You have some points on your notepad, some links on your smartphone while others bookmarked on your PC. Staying organized is one of the main concerns for writers. The following tools will help you stay organized with ease.
a) Google Drive
This tool by Google has helped to keep your spreadsheets, documents, and other materials stored and organized online.
This helps you to leave notes for yourself about a resource online which will remind you each time whenever you return to the site.
8. Word References
Want a better word for ‘strong’? The following resources will help you with synonyms, definitions, spelling, rhyming, and more.
Translate words, find quotes, synonyms, and other information on this multi-purpose site.
b) Acronym Finder
Acronym Finder is the world’s most comprehensive and largest dictionary of initials, abbreviations, and acronyms. This resource has over 565,000 human-edited entries.
9. Software for Writing
You will need tools that will help you pen your thoughts from almost anywhere along with some features that will help you organize your ideas and share it on the digital platforms.
The Google-owned site is a good place to start your own blog for free.
WordPress is one of the most popular choices which helps you start a blog or two.
Summing up, everyone needs a little assistance at one point or the other, which are the key areas you are lagging in? Did this post sort you out? Feel free to discuss your queries in the comment section below!
For writing online, the pre-requisite is to know the digital world! Since everybody shifting to online mediums, building a career in Digital Marketing should be a priority.
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