Writing a Book? You Should Know These Rules

Many people have a lot to say and a lot to contribute to others. Some are able to express it in words; some through paintings, others via songs… Each and every one of us IS an artist. A mother that prepares a delicious meal IS an artist in her own rights. It takes imagination, creation and the application of one’s talent in whatever area he/she chooses to express him/herself.

What would be the most important rule for one who chooses to express his thoughts and ideas through words? As Neal Gaiman said: “This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until its done. It’s that easy, and that hard.”

How true! This is the very first rule one should follow. I call it: Start With Small Steps: If you managed to write only a few sentences per day, so be it. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Just remember to keep on going and write something EVERY day. The process of writing is not unlike working out at the gym. If you keep at it, you would eventually build strong muscles and a body that would easily be able to run a marathon. Do you want to be a successful writer? Then you have to write every day, and read every day. Write! Write and write! The more you write the better writer you will become. It maybe hard at first but it will get easier and easier and before you know it, words will start spilling out followed by phrases, sentences, paragraphs, chapters and voila! You end up with a complete book in your hand.

Before you sat at the keyboard you must have had a general idea of the story and the main characters. Right? Here comes the second rule: Write what comes your way. Start telling the story. You are the creator of your characters and if you are doing a good job, they will start telling you what is next. They will tell you how they would react in certain circumstances, what they would feel or say. Listen to them. Move with them. Live their lives, get into their heads and find out what they think. Keep writing the story even if it sounds stupid, ridiculous or unreal. These things can be fixed during the process of editing. (A few words of caution: do not edit as you go, as that would slow you down and stop the flow. Editing is done best AFTER you had told the whole story.)

I’ll tell you how I started writing my (soon to be published: The Jewish Gypsy) historical fiction. I initially wanted to write a Gypsy love story so I researched the Internet until I came across the most surprising and shocking piece of information. That was the point when I decided to write a historical fiction that takes place during WWII and a love triangle between Gypsies and Jews. I had the basic idea and the first two main characters. I sat down to write the first chapter and that lead me to the next. My characters woke me up in the middle of the night telling me what they would or would NOT do and I just kept on writing what came my way and spilled out the words without a second thought. I wrote for at least 5-6 hours per day. After eight weeks I had the whole story completed to my great satisfaction. I ended up with a full product because I followed to the dot the two important rules: Start with small steps; write write, write. And write what comes your way.

Hope this article inspired you. See you in Writing a book? You Should Know these Rules Part II.

Search Engine Optimization: SEO Content Writing and Google Ranking

Search engine optimization is a fundamental aspect of Google’s indexing and ranking algorithms. SEO content writing refers to writing blog and web content to achieve high Google rankings. For most bloggers, amateur or professionals, and web masters running the average website, SEO optimization is essential to their survival.

What is Search Engine Optimization?

Rather than query the importance of SEO optimization, it may be more pertinent to query why it is so important. In fact, perhaps it is even more pertinent to ask what exactly is search engine optimization? There are many answers to that question, the simplest being that SEO is the art of designing your website or bog to meet as many of the requirements of Google’s indexing and ranking algorithms as possible.

This means that you are designing your website or blog, and writing its content, to meet what you perceive to be the needs of what is fundamentally a mathematical formula. Do you have a Masters degree in math? No? Then why bother to achieve something you have no hope of achieving?

The way to optimize your web pages or blog posts to meet the needs of Googlebot and any other algorithm Google lets loose on your site is to be honest! Do not generate text and vocabulary that does not enhance the importance of your web page. It’s important here to understand that Google does not index entire domains, but only individual web pages and blog pages and posts.

The Language of SEO Content Writing

SEO content writing refers to the writing of content for web pages and blog posts that meets Google’s indexing and ranking conditions as closely as it can. This includes identifying pre-programmed character strings that define grammar and spelling. So this belies the statements that spelling and grammar does not matter.

One of the objectives of SEO content writing is to meet with the norms of spelling and grammar of the target country. You can take this as being the USA for most web publications, and the UK for most other publications in English speaking countries. If you can have your web pages and blog posts translated for publication in the search engines appertaining to other countries then OK – go for it!

Otherwise, focus on the USA and English speaking Europe when writing blog posts and content for web pages that are published internationally. SEO content writing for international use will usually be fine if written in American English. Use UK standards for publication in the UK and Europe.

The Objective of SEO Content Writing

The objective of SEO content writing is to achieve a high Google ranking for the web page concerned. You can employ keywords (or predicted search terms) and language/semantics related to that keyword. Most times, however, it will be sufficient simply to write what you are seeking into the Google search box in your own words.

So take a step backwards, and consider what you might write into a search box if you were looking for information on, say, ‘Are Ghosts Real?’ That might be ‘reality of ghosts,’ ‘do ghosts exist,’ or even ‘are ghosts real’. When writing a blog post or a web page article on this topic, or even an entire website, you would have to do your best to predict the words others will use to find out whether or not ghosts are real.

SEO Content Writing: The Crux

Once you have decided on the most appropriate term, you can use that as the title/heading of a page on your website. Then write that page using the term you chose (e.g. ‘are ghosts real’) in the most interesting way you can. However, you must display a particular passion for your subject and persuade your readers that You Love Ghosts! This is the crux of SEO content writing and how to maximize the search engine optimization of your pages and posts – write naturally, but with SEO in mind!

Only then will they follow you and believe what you write. In fact the entire process is simple. Check what people interested in your topic are reading elsewhere online by becoming one of them for a while. Then write what you learn onto your website or blog using the best English you can. Finally make sure that you are also including the best keywords that you have discovered to have a good monthly frequency of search.

Then you may achieve the highest possible Google ranking you can through well researched SEO content writing. However, never forget that search engine optimization also involves keyword research and finding the most used and most profitable keywords available to you.