To accompany this book, Clark released his fifty writing tools to improve your writing on his blog, and here are some of my favourites:
- Get the name of the dog and the brand of the beer. Dig for the concrete and specific, details that appeal to the senses and help readers see the story.
- Pay attention to names. Interesting names attract the writer — and the reader.
- Know when to back off and when to show off. When the topic is most serious, understate; when least serious, exaggerate.
- Learn the difference between reports and stories. Use one to render information, the other to render experience.
- Take interest in all crafts that support your work. To do your best, help others do their best.
That last one, especially.
For those wanting a more aesthetically pleasing presentation, the fifty writing tools ‘cheat sheet’ (pdf) is what you’ll want. Whereas those wanting something a bit more sensory will take great pleasure in the fifty writing tools podcast series (that unfortunately only made it to tool number 32).