Simple questions for writers
1. What is it for?
If this piece of writing works, what will change? What action will be taken?
The more specific you are in your intent, the more frightening it is to do the writing (because you might fail). And, magically, the more specific you are in your intent, the more likely it is to succeed.
2. Who are you?
Writing comes from someone. Are you writing as scientist, reporting the facts? Are you an angry op-ed writer, seeking political action? Or are you perhaps the voice of an institution, putting up an official warning sign in an official place?
3. Who is it for?
It's almost impossible for a piece of writing to change someone. It's definitely impossible for it to change everyone. So… who is this designed to reach? What do they believe? Do they trust you? Are they inclined to take action?
4. Will it spread?
After the person you seek to reach reads this, will she share it? Shared action is amplified action.
Your resume is written. So is your Facebook update, your garage sale ad and the memo to your employees.
Writing can make a difference. Write to make a difference.