The 9 Questions Writers Should Ask Before Publishing
A checklist that trains your brain to write poverty-proof content
The quality of your life depends on the type of questions you ask — are you asking the same questions as successful writers?
Let’s quickly look at the mind of a good writer.
They focus on writing content the audience wants — that’s the first step towards profitable writing.
Don’t receive their desired income from writing, and here’s why — they still have natural bad habits that make their amazing information less valuable.
Successful writers are aware of those habits and practice avoiding them…
So for you to be a successful writer, here are the nine questions you must face to defeat the habits limiting your success.
1. Do I say stuff the reader won’t care about?
The element of surprise is what readers subconsciously want — they want to hear something they haven’t heard before.
Adding unnecessary fillers to make your writing longer just bores the reader. Even if your content has really good information.
Information promised in your headline and short-description is what the reader expects.
2. Am I speaking to a friend or stranger?
When the reader decides to read your content, they become a warm lead — they’re now interested in what you have to say.
You wouldn’t cold call a warm lead, so avoid doing it in your writing.
For writing that sells, you must learn to write the way you speak — this helps you speak to the writer as if you’re talking to a friend.
Reading your writing out loud will let you know what needs to be changed or removed.
Quick Tip: Use more “you” instead of “we” and “I”.
3. What will the reader gain?
Asking this gets you focused on giving your readers value.
In every business, you have to give value first so it can be exchanged for money — writing doesn’t escape this.
Nobody wants to “spend” time reading something that doesn’t contribute to their life.
The rich add value while the poor take it. Are you a rich or poor writer?
4. Does my writing require a briefing?
If you’re writing long and there’s no expected format, briefing the reader is necessary for them to stay.
Readers will keep reading your content if they’ve found the part they’re looking for or there is briefing which confirms the desired information is coming soon.
The briefing is about creating a content page in the reader's mind.
This is one of the principles I use to get a 40% read ratio.
5. Is the headline good enough to captivate readers?
Stay away from using phrases your audience is used to hearing.
Life-changing writing with a basic headline is like $10,000 in a supermarket bag — nobody would think of finding money there. Show them the briefcase.
Here are some guidelines to improve your headline:
- Keep it as short as possible
- If you wouldn’t say it, don’t write it
- Add figures if necessary
- Include a keyword that resonates with your audience
- Make it roll off the tongue
6. Am I engaged when reading over it?
Your answer indicates if you wrote something valuable or not.
If you are part of the audience you write to, then you likely share the same ideologies and vocabulary as them. So if you don’t enjoy your content or understand it — nobody will.
Read over your draft and be honest about the areas you felt like stopping. That may be a sign the paragraph needs to be shortened or sentences aren’t needed.
7. Am I over-explaining?
Are you confident in the reader knowing what you’re talking about without over-explaining? If not, it’s likely what they just read wasn’t worth remembering.
Over-explaining ruins the reader’s experience and profitable writing is about creating emotions or empowering the reader.
Edit your drafts, and don’t be afraid to remove 200 words. Being concerned with the word count is the main reason people over-explain. For income-based writing, there’s no balance between quality and quantity.
Another reason writers over-explain is because they fear accountability of their words — writing without confidence leads you to write disclaimers.
Instead, take out those disclaimers and use them as responses when you’re asked questions.
You will never be a successful writer if you’re trying to avoid stepping on eggshells.
8. Is What I’m Writing Making Sense Immediately?
If not, the reader will stop reading if more sentences don’t make sense.
When readers don’t understand something, they will look for the meaning in the next sentence or paragraph. If they don’t find it, they’re convinced you don’t speak the same language as them.
This is why your writing format and structure (delivery) is just as important as the content.
Writing dumb makes money. Bestselling books are not academic books for one reason — a fifth grader can’t understand it.
You should write based on the average reading age of your population (writing most people understand). If your audience is more specified, it’s acceptable to include jargon whenever necessary.
But remember Albert Einstein’s definition of genius:
Genius is making complex ideas simple, not making simple ideas complex.
9. Do I gain more than the reader?
Focusing on the reader gaining more creates the desire of changing their lives.
If you’re writing to get out of the financial rat race, think of how it would feel. What if you could make the reader experience a better feeling?
Feelings are why people share content — if it impacted them, it would do so for their friends and community.
Create the best feelings in your writing and you’ve won.
The feeling is the secret.
Your Last Post Is The Real Competition
Your goal should be to write your next best post, as it guarantees you giving 110%. Do this and you’ll graduate to being a successful writer.
Crypto & Marketing Writer ~ Copywriting or ghostwriting enquiries: matt[at]mattshango.com