For many people, writing is an art, a creative talent akin to music or sculpture or painting. For many more, writing is simply a communication tool.
I lean more towards the practical side. I consider writing somewhat of a craft or trade – artistic, yet functional and practical, like plumbing or welding.
Writing doesn’t need to be art. It needs to be effective.
But effective doesn’t mean boring, flat, or two-dimensional. It doesn’t mean black and white.
It means painting pictures with your words.
You see, when we read, we literally imagine all sorts of pictures in our mind, like fleeting split-second movie scenes. It’s one of the reasons stories work so well – a good fiction novel makes you feel like you’ve literally stepped into another world.
You can nearly touch the warm, vivacious characters in their jewel-rich clothing of blues and reds. Hear the marketplace clangs and shouts from vendors as you walk between the dirty stalls in the cobblestoned square. The clop-clop of a horse warns of a creaky, haphazard wagon coming up just behind you and some stinking drunk stumbles into you with a muttered, “Move, willya?”
See what I mean?
All I did was write some words. On my screen, they’re black and white. But as I wrote, my mind swirled about, bringing imagery to my words so I could paint a picture with all its colours and sounds.
And as you read my words, your mind took them and painted a new picture in your mind – one you could nearly imagine as being real.
That’s a wonder – words let people see what doesn’t even exist.
And when you paint pictures with your words as you write for your business, you bring compelling visuals to your work. Imagine pulling a client in closer because he feels the emotion, sees the potential and can nearly taste the future after working with you.
This week, bring colour to your writing. Make movies for your readers’ minds. Pick a page of web copy and add some rich adjectives, metaphors or play up the mood of the scene.
Go ahead, paint pictures. And brighten up your world.