7 steps to more clear, confident and surprising writing

These are the main practical techniques that are the foundation of our tone of voice.

The 7 steps have a natural progression to them – they start by focusing us on what we want to say, then they remind us to be clear, simple and easy to read, and they finish with the touches that add an extra bit of surprise.

Some of these steps you’ll use in almost every time you write. Some are especially important in specific contexts (such as writing web pages). Some of them you might only need to use occasionally.

  1. We focus on the big picture.
    Not on ourselves.
  2. We say what’s most important.
    Not everything we know.
  3. We write like we speak.
    Not like a technical report.
  4. We write to be skimmed.
    Let people find what they need quickly.
  5. We use active sentences.
    (Passive sentences are not used.)
  6. We add energy.
    With short sentences. Like this. Not long sentences that just go on for far longer than necessary a bit like this one you’re reading now.
  7. … And we add small surprises.
    Something unexpected.