Short and Sweet Advice for Writers – Read Your Work Out Loud

This is something we used to advocate for all the time when I worked as a writing tutor in college. I find it especially helpful when I hear someone else read my work aloud to me. Awkward, yes, but very illuminating.

Live to Write - Write to Live

victrola dog artYou have probably heard this advice before. It isn’t new. It isn’t rocket science.

But, do you actually read your work out loud?

Experts across all genres recommend reading your work out loud as part of your editing process. There’s something about hearing a piece spoken out loud that makes it easy to spot weak spots. I use this technique on everything from blog posts to essays to short stories to business correspondence. I’m never sorry I did it.

Jane Friedman wrote on the Writer’s Digest blog about how reading her work out loud helped her reveal filler, expose boring descriptions, and hone her voice. Joanna Penn produced a video about how reading her novel Pentecost out loud (start to finish) helped her improve consistency, dialog, pacing, and also spot typos. In an interview with Fast Company, David Sedaris said, “I used to hate it when a…

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