Tag Archives: writing

A Quick Writing Tip: the first paragraph

I’m working on an article for a column I’m co-writing with my Social Chicks partners, and it brought back a writing tip I learned in one of my writing courses.

After you finish writing a piece, look back at the beginning and write a new opening paragraph. This is because often when you start writing you don’t know what form or angle the piece is going to take. After you have written it, you have a better idea of how to summarize it and usually your original first paragraph ends up being more appropriate as your second paragraph, and you can re-write the first one to more accurately sum up the ideas to follow.

I have found this to be true in nearly every writing project I have ever written. It’s also a great way to let go of writer’s block when staring at that first blank page (screen) and just dive in, start writing, and give yourself the permission to go back and properly introduce your topic later.

It’s a great way to hash out your ideas before you commit to the first paragraph.

Have you ever found this to be the case in your writing? How do you avoid writer’s block?

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Help Wanted: Construction and Trades

One of my two jobs is marketing for a renovation company. Right now we are looking for skilled tradespeople for window installations and bathroom and kitchen renovations. However, in the past we’ve noticed that this category of workers is notorious for less-than-professional applications when applying for jobs.

Perhaps because it’s a blue-collar field, construction job seekers think it’s okay to be casual when applying for work. However, I think a general rule to abide by is this: whatever level of professionalism you use to apply for a job, that will be the type of employer you attract. If you want a good employer who treats you right, you need to present yourself professionally. Whether your skills are in trades or any other industry, you may not necessarily be an excellent writer. But whether your writing skills are great or not, always have someone look over your resume and cover letter. Get someone with excellent writing and grammar skills, or go to an employment centre and ask someone to review your work. You’ll end up with a much more attractive job application that will get you in the door at more companies you apply with.

I found this great article with some good examples of what do to and what not to do, as well as some general tips. The only thing I disagree with is checking your spelling and grammar using your computer’s spell-check. I’m not saying that’s not a good idea, and you should use your spell-check, but another set of human eyes can catch mistakes that you as the writer (and your spell-check) may not.

The Canadian economy is on the upswing, so there will be more jobs and work to be had. Applying for a job in any field should always include a professional resume and cover letter that has been reviewed by that valuable second set of eyes!

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