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How to improve your tone writing

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How to improve your tone writing
September 07, 2018 1st Anniversary Wishes 2 comments

And as we begin to write more, our tone of voice will develop And because we set our sights on increasing our follower count (based on what.

An essay is a challenging and exciting task every student faces in college and university. The tone of an essay is an essential aspect. Every scholar should consider it during writing. An informal tone may spoil the impression of the academic piece, reduce its grade. No matter, what is the subject of your work, essay tone should be formal. Every author has to pick his tone carefully. He must follow some essential rules to avoid inappropriate words in his writing piece. Different tones create a specific atmosphere. A reader should feel the mood and attitude of the writer. In our article, you will learn more about various essay tones; find useful rules on hot to use effective tone in your papers.

Check the Tone of your Essay

Formal and Informal Tone.

There are plenty of tones the authors can apply: sarcastic, humorous or frustrated. A formal style is the most appropriate language a student can use in his papers. Choose the style according to your instructor’s demands. Avoid low results. Remember about your primary purpose and write the paper according to the provided requirements. It will show your serious attitude and prove that you have enough knowledge and skills to complete the assignment. Don’t use an informal style in your piece. It can spoil the impression of your piece. Elements like slang, colloquialisms or sentence fragments are inappropriate because these elements are great to a personal story not for the serious piece. Here are some examples of informal words and collocations: you know; like; super big; big deal; you, your, yours (second-person perspective).

Find the balance. Show serious attitude to the subject of your work and apply specific author’s elements that highlight natural tone and essential facts.

Let’s look at two examples of paper fragments related to the necessity of car seats for babies.

Version 1 (informal).

Let’s pretend that your husband drives the car. You keep your four-month-old daughter on your arms on the back seat. The situation seems comfy and cute. It is dangerous instead. Even if we don’t think about a car accident, the driver may brake hard and cause a massive shake inside the car. If you don’t have a car seat, such situation is a big deal for a baby and may cause serious traumas.

Version 2 (formal).

Car seats for babies are crucial to their safety. Parents should use this kind of baby essentials every time they get their son or daughter in the car. It helps to protect a baby. You may avoid plenty of dangerous situations that may occur while driving.

Version 1 would be appropriate for blog articles not for the formal papers. It includes incorrect elements, the improper tone of writing. Version 2 helps to convey the primary aim of writing and attract readers’ attention to a serious subject.

Don’t Be Too Formal.

During education, people have various assignments and writing tasks that require specific skills or have strict rules. The pieces can vary depending on its purpose; not all of them should sound too formal. Sometimes, you can choose and apply creative elements. Appropriate joke or interesting story can be a good option for a narrative of your descriptive essay. This tone will make your piece easy to read and exciting. The paper will grab the readers’ attention. It means that paper purpose and requirements matter for the tone and style. If you clearly understand them, you will make the right choice and pick a proper tone of an essay that won’t be too formal or boring for readers.

Here are a few useful tips. They will help you to avoid mistakes related to incorrect language and tone.

  • Don’t use too long sentences; it worsens readability and overall impression of your piece. Use fewer words and be natural.
  • Try to use verbs instead of compound nouns because it is a clear sign of stiffness, boring writing that can't excite.
  • Avoid the verb “to be”. Prefer active verbs in your papers.
  • Use conversational language that makes your story exciting and easy-to-read. Remember that informal style is inappropriate for academic papers. Write your essay like an interview not chatting with your friends.

How to Be Confident and Positive in Your Writing?

The primary aim of the majority of pieces is to grab the readers’ attention, give interesting facts about the subject and a story that make them read it to the end. We offer you the list of simple but efficient ways to improve your tone of an essay: make it confident, positive, and passionate.

  1. Avoid depressing and somber phrases. Even if your task is related to negative aspects, don’t forget to highlight some positive elements.
  2. Make confident statements without using Prefaces. Avoid such phrases as “I strongly believe” or “I think.” They don’t make your text confident and worsen your language.
  3. Prefer action verbs as many times as possible. Try to convey your readers how passionate you are about the subject of your work. Don’t use passive language and stiff phrases. Impressive essay tone means you, like an artist, show your audience the scene of your story. Active phrases help to express your feelings and emphasize the fundamental idea of your work.
  4. Show your role in the essay. A tone of writing depends on the author’s part and his actions. If you describe a personal experience or significant actions that influenced the final result, don’t forget to write about your role. It helps to add new elements to your piece. You may highlight the essential aspects.

Order an Essay

Don’t Know How to Improve the Tone of your Essay?

Creating an essay and picking the proper tone is a tricky task. It is a problem for many students. If you have doubts about the tone of your paper, you may choose professional assistance. Give your work to experience writers and editors. Visit our site to explore the range of services and find more useful tips to write an essay about yourself.

We hope our pieces of advice will help you to improve your tone, find new opportunities to express your feelings properly and create engaging writing pieces in various niches. 

Style, voice, and tone in writing express the attitude of a writer at that moment and and persuasion, see appendix A, “Books to Help You Improve Your Writing,”.

How to Hit the Right Tone in Writing

how to improve your tone writing

Do you obsess about the tone of your writing as you revise? You should. Tone is one of the most overlooked elements of writing. It can create interest, or kill it.

It’s no wonder that so many of the countless conversations I’ve had with writing students and colleagues have been about problems related to tone. A friend submitting a novel says the editors “don’t like the main character.” A nonfiction book on balancing a family and a career skirts the edge of whining. An agent turns down a query because she feels “too much distance from the heart of the story.” I scan the latest work of a journalist friend who’s coming to dinner and find it meticulously sourced and well written, but grim in outlook.

And of course any publication you want to write for will have its own tone, which it would be smart for you to try to match. Notice how quietly all New Yorker profile pieces begin, while Utne Reader favors unconventional and unexpected viewpoints that challenge the status quo.

What exactly do I mean by tone? That’s a good question, as there are many terms—mood, style, voice, cadence, inflection—used to mean much the same thing. For now let’s agree that tone is the author’s attitude toward his subject: grave, amused, scientific, intimate, aggrieved, authoritative, whatever.

If you were a photographer, tone would be the way you light your subject. For dramatic shadows, lit from the side. For a scary effect, from above. For romance, lit with candles. In a movie, tone is often conveyed with music—think of the ominous score accompanying the girl swimming in shark-infested waters in Jaws.

A writer doesn’t have a soundtrack or a strobe light to build the effect she wants. She has conflict, surprise, imagery, details, the words she chooses, and the way she arranges them in sentences. Like the tone you use when you talk to somebody, tone in writing determines how a reader responds. If the piece sounds angry, he gets nervous. If it’s wry and knowing, he settles in for an enjoyable read. If it’s dull, he leaves it on the train, half read.

Thus, the wrong tone can derail an otherwise good piece. I’m surprised how seldom writing students note this during our workshop discussions, as if it’s impolite to admit that they’re made uncomfortable by how much the narrator seems to hate her mother, or to say that their thoughts drifted elsewhere by the second page of the overly abstract piece about mindfulness in the workplace.

You can detect tone problems in your own work simply by noting where your attention wanders as you reread it. Or, better, by reading it aloud. When you’re ready to revise a piece, try reading it to someone else, or asking someone to read it to you. You won’t have to search for awkward or boring or whiny parts—you’ll hear them.

Some problems with tone are small and can be easily fixed during revision. Others might require a new approach to the piece as a whole. Let’s look at a few of the easiest and most effective ways to improve the tone of your writing.

1. AVOID A PREDICTABLE TREATMENT OF YOUR SUBJECT.
In the first draft you write what people expect you to write—what you expect yourself to write. “I wanted a car.” The tone becomes predictable. Now, during your revision, go deeper. Seek out the harder truths. It’s in the second, third, fourth draft that you say something we don’t expect you to say, something even you didn’t expect you to say. When you get tired of being nice. “I wanted a car so I could drive out of my marriage.” Surprise yourself, and you will surprise your reader.

Similarly, you’ll want to avoid taking an overly emotional approach to an overly emotional subject. Think of the dry, reserved tone in which Joan Didion recalls the anguish of losing her husband in The Year of Magical Thinking. What if she had wailed about her loss? There would be nothing for us readers to do, even if the emotions being reported to us were very sad. (Note: If you’re having a hard time distancing yourself from the raw emotion of a personal subject, this may be a sign that you need to let time do its magic work. Frank McCourt said it took him years before he could detach from his anger toward his feckless father enough to give Angela’s Ashes its nonjudgmental tone. When something bad happens, of course we feel upset, even as if life has treated us unfairly—but that’s not a great place to write from. Let the experience ripen in your memory until you’ve achieved the distance you need.)

If your subject is inherently serious, try taking a lighter approach. What’s Your Poo Telling You? came to Chronicle Books as a serious examination of—well, you know. In that form, it might have sold a few thousand copies. The lighter treatment led to sales of hundreds of thousands of copies. There’s no denying that titles with tone sell books: Consider My Miserable, Lonely Lesbian Pregnancy or Skinny Bitch.

2. KEEP TONE CONSISTENT FROM START TO FINISH.
Make sure your very first sentence establishes the tone you want. Look at the opening line of “The Lesson” by Toni Cade Bambara:

Back in the days when everyone was old and stupid or young and foolish and me and Sugar were the only ones just right, this lady moved on our block with nappy hair and proper speech and no makeup.

In one sentence, you know who everybody is. Not only do you want to read on, but you want to know what else she’s written so you can get that, too.

You will choose different tones for different subjects, of course, just as you would dress differently for a date than for an interview. But stay away from changing tones within a piece. One minute you’re riffing comically on Uncle Frank’s parade of girlfriends, and the next, the reader is caught chortling when you shift to Uncle Frank’s abuse of his daughter. Or the thriller shifts from a slumped body in an alley to the detective’s girlfriend shopping for bridal gowns, and suddenly we’re in a romance. (Notice, by the way, how many genres actually have tone in their names: thriller, romance, mystery, horror. …)

Read your work looking for places where the tone fades or shifts. Focus your revision there.

3. CUT RUTHLESSLY.
If you reread a piece and decide that nothing works until the second page, why not simply start it there?

The delete key is your friend. The novelist Carolyn Chute told Writers Ask: “I write a lot of junk. On and on and on, all this junk. But every now and then this dramatic moment happens, so I lift that out and put that aside. And then I write all this junk: They’re brushing their teeth, they’re sitting there, they’re looking around—you know. Then something will happen and I’ll pull that out. Because those are the only strong things.”

Read your work looking for places where your engagement wanes. Boring is bad. Careful is right next to it. When it comes to tone, don’t try to fix the boring parts—toss them. You can’t fix boring.

Other places where the delete key comes in handy:

Off-topic tangents. You know how it goes: You start out writing about the president’s pooch, and by the homestretch you’re discoursing disdainfully on the state of our economy and what a boob the president is—as if people are lining up to hear your thoughts on that. Stick to the subject at hand.

Overemphasis on themes. Writing fiction? Don’t hit readers over the head with your own interpretation of the meaning of it all. You provide the right detail—say, the wooden coffin—and they’ll supply the mortality of man. Resist the urge to overtly explain—it can come off as condescending or redundant.

4. LET TENSION SUSTAIN TONE.
Your piece, whatever it is, should be rife with conflict. It’s not enough to write an essay about how much you like to spend the day in bed. If nothing is stopping you from lazing around under the sheets, then you have no problem, and thus the piece has no tension—an essential element in sustaining any tone for the long haul. If you find you’ve committed this mistake, whether in a fictional story or a true one, bring in someone with the opposite point of view (mothers are always good for this!). That’s why columnists so often reference their mates—to be the foil, the reasonable one, so the author isn’t ranting in a vacuum.

5. USE YOUR VOICE.
Are you one of the many writers who blog? Unless you know tomorrow’s stock prices or are telling readers how to relight a furnace on a freezing day, it will be your voice, not the content, that draws them in. So you must sound like somebody. This is true with other forms of personal writing, as well. Resist the urge to come off as uncomplicated, reasonable or polite. If you’re expressing opinions, express them! (Note that this is a format where opinion is the point, not a tiresome add-on.) Don’t say that whether or not someone likes a particular film “seems to me a matter of sensibility and perspective.” We know that! Be in a mood. Take a position. “Anyone who doesn’t like The Ruling Class should be cast into hell for all eternity.” Look for opportunities to bring a human voice into your work. There’s more sense of someone behind the words “I had a breast cut off” (Molly Ivins) than “I had a mastectomy.”

6. CONVEY TONE THROUGH DETAILS AND DESCRIPTIONS.
Consider the difference between “in October” and “under an October sky.” A description of scenery, however luscious, can tire the reader if that’s all it is. Use the imagery to show us your character’s mood: A sad character will notice rotting houses and untended yards; a contented one will see picturesque shacks and gardens in a profuse state of nature.

When adding details to enrich your writing, tone comes from being as specific as possible. Change “My husband committed suicide” to “My husband gassed himself in our Passat in the Austrian Alps.”

I once taught a travel-writing class aboard a cruise up the Amazon, and sent passengers ashore to a remote village with notebooks. One student, surprised and amused by the satellite dishes towering over the small huts, dubbed them “the flowers of the Amazon” in her resulting piece. Another, having overheard the song “The Air That I Breathe” on an antiquated village speaker, wrote, “The fact is you can hear the whole planet breathing while you’re here. As one Brazilian told me, it’s the lung of the world.” Tone in travel writing comes from such acute observations.

In memoir or fiction, it comes also from offbeat character details, like this one from the memoir The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls:

Dad was so sure a posse of federal investigators was on our trail that he smoked his unfiltered cigarettes from the wrong end. That way, he explained, he burned up the brand name, and if the people who were tracking us looked in his ashtray, they’d find unidentifiable butts instead of Pall Malls that could be traced to him.

The narrator here, it is safe to say, is not admiring the cunning of her father; the tone suggests she is old enough to worry about the folly of her parents.

7. LEARN TO RECOGNIZE BUILT-IN PROBLEMS WITH TONE.
Everybody who’s ever been fired has sat down to write a book about it. But harping on the wrong that’s been done to you can make your readers uneasy. If they were seated next to you on a plane, they’d be desperately longing to change seats. Lawsuits, controversial issues, other people’s behavior, how overwhelmed you were by the flood of wedding gifts, and what a chore it was to write all those thank-you notes: all such topics force you to work hard to overcome the reader’s unease at smelling an agenda, or anger, or bragging.

In these instances, to fix the tone, you have to fix the way you think about a given subject. You have to back off, calm down, see other points of view, maybe even take some responsibility for whatever happened. When writing about such delicate subjects, you must not let a negative tone take over by ascribing motives to people: You just tell what they did, and let the reader read motive into it. You must write with forgiveness, understanding and humor. In some ways, this can be a payoff to examining your tone as you write: You change the writing, and the writing changes you. But if you find this is not possible with your subject, don’t be afraid to scrap a project that you discover has inherent problems with tone. You’ll be a better writer for it.

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Five Simple Tips for Improving Tone of Voice in Customer Service

how to improve your tone writing

People don’t always remember what we say, but they never forget how we make them feel – and that’s where tone of voice comes in.

Here Guy Letts shares five tips with us, which can easily be implemented in your business!

Some great communicators are born that way. Most of us have to work at it.

But it’s worth it.

Words are powerful. Used well, they can move us, inspire us, motivate us to action. Used poorly, they can make us lose hope.

The very best customer service can be undermined by the wrong tone of voice. Yet the worst complaint can be defused and fixed if you get it right.

If you want to get honest feedback from your customers, they need to trust that you’re listening. Tone of voice makes a huge difference to that. And if you want to want to improve your Net Promoter Score (NPS) score, it turns out that tone of voice can make a huge difference to that too.

So it’s worth getting right…

1. Do Speak and Write Naturally

The best advice I learnt from a professional speech writer was to write, speak or present using only the language that you’d naturally use if talking to a friend over a coffee.

So, when communicating with our customers, they’re going to enjoy doing business with us more if we put them at ease by keeping the tone simple and informal, whether we’re speaking or writing.

And when speaking, it’s not just the words, but also the rhythm, speed, volume and pitch.

For example, I remember sitting through the safety briefing of a US airline and the member of cabin crew who delivered it seemed to be going for a speed record. I could barely make out the words, and although I’m sure she intended to promote safety, she was just going through the motions and it felt like it.

So instead of…

Felicitations!

Our continuing gratitude for your patronage. Please ensure that should any aspect of the services we render cause disgruntlement in yourself you touch base with us promptly.

Your account is now due for settlement. We implore you to carefully scrutinise the data herein to ensure no errors or omissions have occurred on our part, before enclosing your remittance with alacrity.

Yours most fondly, The Enterprise Energy Billing Team

Perhaps try…

Good morning,

Your monthly bill is now due. We hope everything has been OK, but if not, please get in touch – we care about putting things right for you.

Please check that everything in your attached statement is correct before making payment via bank transfer.

Thanks again, Chris Thorpe, Enterprise Energy Billing

The problem comes when we adopt a vocabulary that’s not one we’d naturally use. It can make you at best hard to understand, and at worst it can make you sound insincere.

So when you’re speaking or writing, for best results use the ‘as if to a friend’ test.

2. Don’t Be Defensive

Have you ever called a customer contact team to try and get a problem fixed, only to find the person who takes the call starts with the assumption that their company has done nothing wrong and the fault must be yours?

It’s frustrating. No doubt the call handler is acting with good intentions, trying to protect the interests of their company. But whatever the problem was, this approach immediately makes it worse.

The person calling is already stressed because there’s a problem. Now they have to deal with someone who isn’t receptive.

Whose fault it is does not matter at this stage. The best thing to do in this situation is for the call handler to start by saying, “sorry“.

It’s important for everyone to understand you’re not conceding blame or liability. You’re just saying you feel sad that your customer has experienced a problem and reassuring them that you will try to help.

Saying “sorry” is an expression of sympathy, not an admission of guilt.

Nobody can sue you for saying sorry. If you watch a police drama on TV, and the detective says “I am sorry for your loss” to the relatives of a victim, they are not confessing to the murder. They are simply expressing sympathy, and mourning the fact that a bad thing has happened.

To get the best outcome for both your organisation and the customer, you need to build rapport and help the customer understand that you have their best interests at heart. Saying ‘sorry’ when you need to is a great way to start.

3. Don’t Be Anonymous

We feel better when people step up and take responsibility.

Even if it’s bad news like a price increase, we feel more respect for someone who’s prepared to take accountability for a decision, explain it and stand behind it than we do for “The Marketing Team” or “The Customer Service Team”.

But I get it – if you’re the leader, you’re worried that you’ll get a deluge of phone calls.

Well, to be honest, if you’re doing something that’s unfair, or if you’re not communicating it well, then you deserve those calls. You need to learn those lessons. But whether it’s an email to a single customer or a newsletter to everyone, it helps your brand if customers know that there’s a person they can identify with, rather than a faceless company.

In my last role, running customer service at a large software firm, I always used to put my name at the bottom of customer communications or encourage one of my team to do that if it was something specific to their area. I was nervous at first but by the end I was confident enough that sometimes I’d even include my mobile phone number.

The amazing thing?

I only ever received a couple of calls. All the others went through the normal channels – the teams that were geared up to handling the everyday issues.

And I’m very glad that I did receive those personal calls, because they were from high-value customers. Things had gone badly wrong for them – the normal procedures for solving customer problems had failed and they were hanging on by a thread.

I was glad of the chance to save them, even though it wasn’t comfortable to hear the bad news at the time. At least we could resolve it and keep their business.

Of course you couldn’t handle it if every customer rang you directly. (They won’t.)

But as the leader, you should have teams and systems in place who can handle those calls. Managers who can deal with escalations. Procedures for planning when communications will go out and making sure you have capacity for the response. And contingency plans for how you will cope if something goes wrong.

It’s your job to build a machine that makes and keeps customers happy. If you do that you’ll find that the vast majority of customers will use efficient contact channels that are set up for them, rather than try and hunt down an executive who is probably in a meeting.

They will not try to call you directly unless something has gone badly wrong – not least (in my case anyway) because they will presume you do not know how to use your company’s IT systems. If they do contact you, it will be as a last resort.

So instead of…

Perhaps try…

And, if you have the bad luck to hear from one of that small minority of customers who are not reasonable and rational (less than 1% in my experience), then you are the one who has the authority, experience and judgement to encourage them to become a customer of one of your competitors instead.

So don’t hide behind a title or a team name. Take the lead! One way or another, it will end well.

4. Don’t Mangle the Grammar

When we’re speaking to one another, we say “you” and “me”.

But when I’m a customer I sometimes hear the words ‘yourself’ and ‘myself’ instead. “I will send the documents to yourself.”

On the positive side, I think people do this because they’re trying to be polite and respectful, and I applaud the sentiment.

Unfortunately, not only does it sound unusual (because it’s not everyday language), it’s also grammatically wrong.

By all means I want to go to great lengths to be polite to my customers. But I’ve learnt that rather than flowery language they value clarity, honesty and delivering on my promises.

5. Don’t Use Platitudes

When I started my career in industry (around the time that fax machines were becoming popular), telephones in big companies were answered with “Your call is important to us.”

I wasn’t convinced at the time, but 30 years on I still hear the same phrase, spoken now (as it was then) by a recorded voice. It’s just that now it’s a computer, not a tape.

I can’t help feeling that if my call was really ‘important’, they would have a person speak to me rather than a machine telling me to wait. It would be more useful if I was told how long I would have to wait or to be told the times when waiting is less likely.

Otherwise it devalues the word ‘important’.

Clearly I am old and, according to my teenage son, prone to grumpiness.

However, words should have meaning. They can be a force for good in your business, or they can irritate your customers and make you appear insincere.

So unless you really, truly mean them, and can deliver a reality to match, don’t use phrases like:

  • “We are committed to…”
  • “…valued customer…”
  • “For your convenience…”

Because your customers have heard them before, and have learned that when they hear them, the business using them doesn’t mean what they’re saying. At best, you’re being forgettable. At worst, you’re further annoying an irate customer.

Global chicken-frying franchise, KFC recently had huge problems getting chicken delivered to their UK restaurants. No chicken is bad news for a chicken restaurant, and hundreds of outlets were forced to close.

KFC did a great job apologising for this turn of events. Here’s the advert they took out in the national press. Notice how they apologise for what’s happened without resorting to any lazy platitudes like “valued customers”:

Remember to always try to be creative, use phrases that are original, genuine and fresh, and actually mean something to your customers.

Guy Letts

Last time I travelled by train the notice by the power outlet wasn’t stiff and starchy. It said “Feel free to charge your phone and your laptop, but no toasters or kettles, please.” It made its point, but it felt a lot more human, and it made this grumpy man smile.

Good luck working on your tone of voice – it can be an effort to stop using the clichés and phrases that you’ve came to rely on, but it’s well worth the rewards that come when you begin to develop a two-way relationship with your customers.

This blog post has been re-published by kind permission of CustomerSure– View the original post

To find out more about CustomerSure, visit: www.customersure.com

Are you unintentionally offending people with your tone of voice? Here are 6 ways to mprove your tone to communicate more effectively.

In Writing, Tone Is the Author’s Attitude

how to improve your tone writing

Remember the last time you read an article and immediately knew who wrote it without even seeing the author’s name? Or think of the times when you discovered a new magazine or blog – what was it that attracted your attention, that kept you browsing for hours?

Imagine people kept coming back to read your content every day, or ended up having a chat with you via your Support tool just for the sake of having a conversation? Sounds like you’re doing something right if you have that happen!

The way to get there is to develop and discover your own style and tone of voice, home in on it, refine it, and stick to it. Sounds easy, but it can be really hard; especially if writing doesn’t come naturally to you. So let’s talk about 6 steps on how to go about writing with a genuine tone of voice that have helped me in the past and that I keep coming back to every day.

Work on a personal project

When do you write? Is it only at work? Do you enjoy writing in general, or is it something you dread? If your job involves lots of communication, you’d better get used to the idea of making writing a more pleasurable experience.

One way to do this is to work on your own projects. It doesn’t matter if you do that at work or at home, since it will always improve your writing and help you discover your personal style. Start a blog on a topic that excites you, even if it’s just for you and the only person reading it is your mum. If a blog feels like too much of a commitment, try out Instagram (it’s like mini blog posts – and you get to refine your visual style at the same time. Double win!), Twitter, or sharing short posts on Facebook.

Find something that genuinely sparks your interest and that you’d like to learn more about, then use that as a starting point to write more.

Read (a lot)

Without any inspiration, it’s hard to get an idea of what your writing voice could sound like. Sure, you have to implement and actually do the work, but you need to know what tone you relate to, what writing styles resonate with you, and get an idea of what’s possible in order to get yourself started.

Reading also shouldn’t be something you only do when you’re first starting to define your own tone of voice or don’t have anything better to do, it’s something to keep up and come back to continuously. As your style evolves, you’ll need new inspiration and new ideas. The more you read, the more details you pick up that help you learn and develop your own natural writing voice.

Have role models and bookmark your favourite content/authors

This follows on from the previous point. After reading a lot of different content, you’ll find certain authors who you relate to more and whose writing you enjoy. Make it a point to bookmark and save your favourite articles, books, blog posts, etc. so you can always come back to them for inspiration and guidance.

Create a list of your top 5 favourite authors and analyze what they’re doing well. What stands out? Do they use certain expressions over and over again? How do they structure their sentences and paragraphs? What do they sound like? What does their tone of voice remind you of?

Analyze what they’re doing, so you can then try and replicate it – and develop your very own personal style along the way.

Pay attention to the details

Look over some of your older writing – how has your style evolved and changed over time? What elements stayed the same? What do all your articles, emails or support answers have in common? Try to be very specific and pick out the details. The little, seemingly insignificant, minor details – they’re what make up the big picture in the end. Details matter. This comes back to my previous point – certain authors have certain ways of standing out and doing things differently, and it’s often through subtleties that their writing sticks with you and becomes memorable and unique.

Write as you speak

Ever got an email that sounded totally stuck up and more like it came from a robot rather than a human? I’m sure you know exactly what I’m talking about – those dry, boring corporate emails. And it’s not just emails, it could be any kind of writing. Usually it’s not so much the person that’s dull, it’s just that they’re having difficulty expressing their point in writing in the same way that they would through conversation.

A great way to overcome this and to actually sound like you’re speaking to someone is to record your message or article first, and then transcribe it. Sure, it takes a little more time, but if sounding human in writing is something you’re struggling with, it’s worth doing this a few times until it becomes second nature.

Keep at it

Keep doing the work. Keep writing. Do it every day. Write for your personal blog (or social media platform – see #1), talk to someone over email or support, and if there’s nothing to work on, make it a point to reach out to someone or learn and document something in writing. It’s such a simple, well-known tip, but one we often dismiss – just because it might seem boring. Yes, it takes patience, but practising every day also builds momentum. One day after another quickly adds up, and a month (and then a few months) will soon have passed. I often think of learning anything new in this way: “the time will pass anyway, so I might as well start now”.

 

What are you struggling with the most when it comes to finding your own writing voice, and what tips have you found useful so far?

I’d love to hear your story – share in the comments below and let’s have a chat!

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Choosing the right tone of voice for your customer service staff is not a one-off task. This is true for over the phone, in person, or in writing.

how to improve your tone writing
Written by Faedal
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