Exercises to cure yourself of rambling writing

Everyone who writes for pleasure is prone to rambling. It’s a sign you have a lot to share with your readers. The problem is that rambling writing isn’t the easiest to understand. At its worst it loses readers and makes writers look muddle headed.

To cure yourself of rambling you need to practise writing articles, essays or blog posts that communicate a single idea. Every sentence and paragraph should contribute to the readers’ understanding of your message.

If you’re not sure what to write about, start by creating a title that expresses a single idea. (I’d like to see an article about the parallels between Game of Thrones and British history!) Or use one of the titles in this list.

Long summer evenings are magical
The reason why I love nature
How colours change my mood
My pet has a personality
Why I wear denim jeans every day

When I write I often use visualisations to guide me. For a blog post that focuses on a single idea, I imagine a cork notice board. The key idea is a metal pin in the board. Each time a paragraph successfully links to the idea, I imagine a thread going from the paragraph to the pin.

This visualisation probably occurs to me because I use spider diagrams when I plan. With spider diagrams it’s really easy to see if a paragraph is relevant to the main point.

Look at this example. It is a starter plan for a 700 word blog post about house cats. Famous lions, dog grooming and dog toys are kinda connected to house cats. Lions are cousins to house cats. Talking about dogs helps us to think about cats by comparison. It would be logical to include these subjects, but as they aren’t directly connected to house cats it may result in rambling.



If you try any of the exercises on your blog, I’d love to see the result. You are welcome to share a link to your blog in the comments section.

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