A Writing Philosophy for Articles – Do You Have One?

At any given time, the internet and printed media are littered with tens of thousands of articles about article writing. The majority of these articles are tips and advice, a few are about grammar and clarity, and the rest are about topics and how to locate them. A writing article philosophy is none of the above.

Simply put, a writing philosophy is not about how you write, but rather why you write. Although it is acceptable to write articles for publicity or website traffic, this should not be your primary motivation. Then there are those who research the most sought-after keywords on the Internet and write articles that direct readers to those terms, and therefore to their websites. This is also a reason to write, but only in the most tenuous sense of the term.

Writers are similar to ministers in that they have a pulpit in the form of the printed page and a message, even if the subject matter is not religious in nature. As a young minister, I overheard someone say, “Young ministers just have to say something, but older ministers may actually have something to say.” The initial step in formulating a writing philosophy is to ask yourself, “Do I have something to say?”

Professionals can quickly respond affirmatively to the question “Do you have something to say?” Years of study, training, and experience put them ahead of others, and all they may need is a little bit of instruction on how to communicate their expertise in writing. The following question for non-professionals should be “how do you see?” Some individuals are naturally gifted with an excellent eye. They need not be politicians to understand politics well. They are able to accurately predict, criticize, evaluate, and comment on the entire sphere, and in some instances may influence the political outcome. They weigh in on the topic, so to speak. Check out the vast opportunities for op-eds (opinion editorials) on the Internet today if you disagree. Thousands of sites on the political right and left are seeking individuals with strong political vision. In this “of the people” society, John Q. Public’s opinion on political figures and political theater is still sought.

Having a strong “minds eye” is applicable to any area of study. Technicians assemble complex electronic and telemetering devices in spacecraft, but some individuals are weighing the impact of all this space hardware on people, the environment, and the future of humanity, and their insight may be as important as the smallest circuit board a technician can produce.

Sometimes the motivation for writing an article is simply to provide information, while other times it is to inspire. Even anger could be a good motive if you are particularly incensed by an injustice or bad behavior. If you are seeking a greater good to be accomplished through your writing, you will always be successful. This may sound overly simplistic or even archaic. Sound absurd? Consider again. No one will ever reject an article that seeks to right a wrong, uplift individuals, or bring a little light and comfort to a troubled world. If this is your motivation, then this is also your philosophy. Well-written.

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