What Makes a Good Article Writer?
We all sometimes feel the need to read something twice. That's normal, especially when digesting crucial info before carrying out a task. However, you shouldn't have to reread text because its meaning is unfathomable. It's the writer's job to communicate clearly, make complex ideas easy to grasp and pitch them at a level that's suitable for the audience. Careful writers edit, looking for gaps or areas that might be confusing.
Internet vs Print
A good writer will understand the difference between writing for the Internet and writing for print. People reading on the web are in more of a hurry. Therefore, the writing and its format must be easy to scan. Online writers should avoid long paragraphs and sentences as well as long words if possible. They should use bullet points for lists. Anyone scanning an article for information will find it more easily in bullet form.
Part of the responsibility of a good writer is to find the right tone for the audience. The writing must be engaging, and for that the author has to know who will read it. Should it be formal or casual? First, second or third person? Technical or simplified? The writer must be familiar with the reader and his/her level of experience. A writer that assumes too much knowledge in the audience is likely to frustrate many readers.
A good writer should always be conscious of how the article flows. Ideas should be written in logical order. A sentence that is not remotely related to the one before usually deserves a new paragraph. Equally, new paragraphs should introduce new ideas rather than be a direct follow-on from previous ones. It's vital for writers to read their work to help achieve this cadence and avoid needless repetition. Successive sentences and paragraphs should not start with the same word.
Technique vs Style
Technical ability does not make a good writer, but careless mistakes irritate some readers. Writers with a readable style should strive to be technically good, while technical writers should also aim to be enjoyable to read. A good writer has both strengths!