Ready, set, write!

Over the years, I have taken many courses on writing. Some were within a more formal academic setting, others less structured.  Some were for a specific element within writing such as grammar, publishing options, creating effective titles or creating a power outline to name a few. Others were just general writing classes and were designed to bring writers together as a source for inspiration and community.

The blogging world has similar opportunities for those of us that crave to create a written online work that will bring value. There are courses and classes all designed to help us gain a specific skill or just hone our overall craft. Communities spring up because writers do tend to find each other and there is a supportive framework within this world unlike many other genres. It is not as isolated as some expressionistic endeavors because in most cases, the writer and reader are connected long before pen strikes paper (or fingers hit keys!).

Some time ago, I came across a list of The Only 12 1/2 Writing Rules You Will Ever Need to Know. Since I do not remember the source (came via one of those many classes…) I can’t give actual credit to anyone as the author, but it is published as a poster through Knowledge Unlimited.   I think that it is particular fitting for bloggers.   I’ve shared the rules below with some inserted commentary on my thoughts.


  1. If you write every day, you will get better at writing every day.  (A great reason to participate in challenges to help form the habit!)
  2. If it is boring to you, it will be boring to your reader.  (Respect your audience!)
  3. Get a writing routine, and stick with it.  (Routine can include a topical calendar, a specific time of day or place where you write.  But it does help create the space and as a result, the work!)
  4. Poetry does not have to rhyme.  (We don’t always have to write to grammer rules.  We don’t.  See?)
  5. Resist stereotypes, in real life and in your writing.  (Keep your writing fresh by relating it to your experience or stories that have touched you. )
  6. Writers read.  Writers read a lot.  Writers read all the time.  (Bloggers read other blogs.  They read alot of them.  Or at least they should!)
  7.  Make lists of your favorite words and books and places and things.   (Those can become an invaluable source of writing ideas for those days when the inspiration is a bit “stuck”.)
  8. There doesn’t always have to be a moral to the story.  (If there is an image that moves you, or a quote that spoke to you – just share it.  Say that.  Then let it speak to the rest of us.)
  9. Always bring your notebook.  Always bring a spare pen.  (We are not always on-line.  But our minds are always engaged.  Today you can substitute your iPhone or other device to capture the ideas if that is your preference but make sure you can always record an idea.  Then come back to it as soon as you can.  If it helps, also jot down where it came to you, what you were doing, what else was going on.  It is amazing how that sense of time and place can bring you right back to that inspirational moment.)
  10. Go for walks.  Dance.  Pull weeds.  Do the dishes.  Write about it.  (In other words, experience life and share the experience.  Allow living to filter into the writing.)
  11. Don’t settle on just one style.  Try something new!  (Not a list maker – try creating a list!  Always making lists?  Try writing a paragraph instead.  Always writing about business or marketing or something specific?  Try a different subject line that still matters to your audience.)
  12. Learn to tell both sides of the story.  (Remember that the best teachers are not those that give the answers.  They are the ones the point the way to finding them!)

— and the big finish!

12 1/2.  Stop looking at this list.  WRITE SOMETHING!




About Kathi Laughman

Referred to by her clients as “The Plan B to Z Expert”, Kathi inspires them to see beyond probabilities to possibilities. They are stronger, happier and more financially secure than ever before. The result is the creation of far more value in the rest of their story than they ever dreamed possible. She serves professionals committed to continuously creating new pathways to success and significance.


  1. Great post Kathi and every word of it so true. Loved your views on each point and your big finish is spectacular. Thanks for dropping by my blog.

  2. Denys Kelley says:

    I love it! I can relate to every one. #12 is my favorite, and then again…every one of Themis my favorite.

  3. Thanks, Denys. I love #12 myself… perhaps because it’s the rule I need to re-learn the most!!! Thanks for stopping by and joining the conversation.

  4. Hi Kathi
    Great list to help with our writing, I love lists LOL and I always have a pen and pad with me where ever I go, sometimes I can be in the check out at the supermarket and an idea will pop into my head so I have to jot it down (I sometimes get some strange looks :))
    Thanks for sharing, have a great day

    • Thanks, Pauline. I can relate to your story about the check-out line! My family has gotten used to my mad dash for a pencil! But others do look on in wonder (or amusement?)! Glad you stopped by! I’m a list gal through and through. One of the best books I read last year was The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande. I came away with a whole new respect for the art of creating lists and leveraging them. Have a great week!

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