Everybody Writes | Book Review


As a writer I’ve always wondered about implementing my writing skills. I’ve read many references, books and many Articles about improving my writing style. Finally I found a beautiful book named ‘Everybody Writes’ by Ann Handley. I found this book very helpful for boosting my writing style & improving my writing. As a reader as well as writer i must recommend this book to my readers & writer friends for improving their writing skills. This is not only a book, I must say that this book works as a handy guide for newbie bloggers. Author of this book appeals to it’s reader audience that ‘writing is habit, not an art’, Author of this book also urges to use this book as a tool for development of writing skills and writing styles.

The Book ‘Everybody Writes’ has been Divided in 5 parts, we’ll be talking about those 5 parts & the content these parts are containing which are extremely helpful for writers. Let’s start with part 1

Part 1

When I started reading this book, I realized that this book contains a lot of things that are useful for the reader. The first part of this book contains the set of writing Rules for better writing process. Doesn’t matter if you’re writing a personal blog post, business letters, business blogs or just posting a casual social media post, applying these certain set of rules in practical writing is very much helpful. We’ll be taking a look at some Contents of the 1st part which are mentioned below.

1.Writing is Habit not an Art:-

.Writing is Habit not an Art:-

In This Section Author explains it’s reader audience that writing is a habit to be formed, and it is not an art. It is true in some sense that the writing process must be regular. If you want to be a good writer you’ve to stick to your daily writing habit no matter what. The habit of writing daily is the only way to make your writing better. Somewhere in this section the author suggests ‘write like a crap if you have to, but write everyday. Keep the streak alive’.

2. Shed High school Rules:

There are some rules about writing the essay as well as an article, questions like what should be the structure of the writing body? (which we’ve already learned in high school while writing the essays) are well explained in this section of ‘shed high school rules’. Which also are useful for bettering your writing skills.

3. Make Your First Ugly Draft:

. Make Your First Ugly Draft:

In this section, the author is telling the readers about the writing, no matter if your first writing draft looks weird and dirty, it is important to write your first draft. you can edit, re-edit later for the N number of times until it fits in your idea of ideal writing.

Honestly, this was the best ever advice I’ve received about writing through this book. Since I’ve followed this advice I’ve never found myself facing ‘Writers Block’, whenever I sit to write. Naturally, when you work on a writing post, you have to make the first draft because it helps you to know where to change the writing while editing the first draft.

4. The More The Think, The easier the ink :

. The More The Think, The easier the ink :

This is a very important section recommended by the author of this book. Thinking is a very natural and essential process before writing. Author suggests, Before you begin writing, be sure you know the purpose or mission or objective of every piece of content that you write. What are you trying to achieve?’. It is important to have a purpose, an objective while you are writing something.

5. Organize. Relax, You’ve Got This :

In this section Author explained after writing the first draft, the writer must relax a bit to boost the thinking process which might be helpful to improve the first draft.

There’s also a list of 15 writing approaches provided by the Author, which might help readers as well as writers to avoid a ‘Writer’s Block’. I personally found this set of instructions helpful & i must recommend it to my blog readers.

6. Swap place With Your Reader:

Good Writing Serves the Reader, Not The Writer”, says the author while suggesting his writer audience to relate or swap the place with their reading audience while writing a content.

Author Asked 3 Questions in this section:

  1. What experience is this creating for the reader ?

  2. What Questions Might they Have?

  3. Am I making them work too hard to figure out what I am trying to say?

7. Humor Comes on Rewrite :

This section also personally helped me a lot to implement my writing style and my writing procedure. The author explained after making the first draft a writer should relax for a while, because you’ll find the humor needed for addition in your writing only if you keep your first draft editing repeatedly which will not only helpful to improve your writing style but also will make your written content extraordinarily humorous.

The list of the writing rules is much bigger, you can work on remaining writing rules if you buy the book which is totally optional, but if a newbie writer follows the rules mentioned above he’ll definitely improve his writing skill. Now let’s move towards part 2.

Part 2

There are some certain grammar rules described by the author of this book, if you are a writer and if you are willing to write then your final draft should be grammatically correct (actually this is optional). Author of the book says “writing is not only about grammar but also depends upon thinking”. There are some certain grammar rules stated in this book by the author & epitome of those grammar rules is as described below.

  1. Usage of Real Words:

In this subsection of the ‘Everybody Writes’, the author insists to newbies to write naturally, whatever the content they are writing or willing to write. Naturally, writing naturally is an effective way of writing, it helps your audience to understand exactly the message you are willing to give them throughout your content.

In short Author says that ‘Better writing comes from that place of goodness. It means using the right words, and avoiding the temptation of the buzzwords’.

  1. Avoid Franken Words:

Is all about avoiding the choices of words a writer is using, the suggestion is not to use confusing words which might confuse the context of your audience.

  1. Know the difference between Active voice and passive voice :

This is an essential part of the writing that one must understand the very basic difference between active and passive voice. Which is described by the author in much simpler language for the better understanding of readers.

  1. Break some grammar rules:

Yes you’ve read it correctly, it is allowed to break some grammar rules for the newbie writers but only if lends the context of the audience in perfect understanding of the content. Some of them are.

  • Never start sentences with and, but or because

  • Avoid sentence fragments.

  • Never write a paragraph that’s a mere sentence long.

And so on.

  1. Avoid confusing as well as clashing words:

One must avoid words like Disinterested – uninterested, Accept – except, phase – faze etc. and so on. Which might change the context of the paragraph or the sentences.

There are much more grammar rules you can find stated in this book to help writers improve their writing skill.

Part 3

If you are a writer and willing to write a perfectly designed, well crafted content or a story, then i must recommend my readers to use some story writing rules described in this book which i found extremely helpful while i was drafting a story for my content creation. For me, this section helped me a lot for improving my story writing or fiction writing. Here’s an epitome of story writing rules given in Everybody Writes’.

Your content is not about storytelling, it is about telling a true story well’. States the author in this section.

  1. Tell How you’ll change the world :

Most useful pro writing tip in this section given by some different authors is ‘coming up with the bigger story is easy, yet telling a true story in an interesting way is more pleasurable’.

Some important characteristics given by the author while creating a story.

As follows:

  • It’s true : Feature real people, genuine emotions and facts in the story.

  • It’s Human: Focus how your products or services touch the lives of the actual people. When writing about people, be specific and believable enough.

  • It’s original: story must offer a new, fresh perspective. (essential thing).

Some questions to ask yourself while crafting a story.

  1. What’s unique?

  2. What’s interesting ?

  3. What’s inspiration?

And so on. To be honest this helps a lot while content creation. (you should try it).

2. Tell the story only you can tell :

Tell the story only you can tell :

3. Voice and Tone of the story:

And so on, this part is purely based on ‘How To Write A Story’.

Part 4

This part of the book is based on some publishing rules explained by the author of ‘Everybody Writes’. This is a part where the Author of ‘Everybody Writes’ suggests and insists it’s audience to approach like a publisher, this section is based on journalism, publisher and their rules of publishing. Like,

  • What’s brand journalism?

  • Telling the truth: This Context includes giving credit to sources (while creating the content on behalf of the brands) at the bottom of the blog posts, or on the websites. Suggested by the author which is necessary.

And some more important publishing rules, copyright rules are well described in this section by the Author of ‘Everybody Writes’.

Part 5

This part is based on the 13 things marketers do while content creation. The section includes ideal length for blog posts, different guidelines for the different kinds of contents. Which makes the process of the content creation easy for the newbie writers. Similarly this part explains what are the best practices while writing for twitter, how to make usage of the hashtags while creating content on the social media, how to create content with humor, in short this section/ part is dedicated to ‘how to write on social media?’, with inclusion of some fantastic pro writing tips, editing tips which a fresher might find helpful while creating the social media content.


There’s another one final part is also included in this book, yes Part 6, Which will be a suspense for you, until you buy your copy of ‘Everybody Writes’. As per my personal experience this is not only a book, it is like a handy work book for the people who newly started writing which will give you the most about improving and implementing your writing skill. So as a writer, again I must recommend this book for my audience for their personal library, if one wants to be a successful writer.

– Rushikesh Panchwadkar

Image source:- pixaby.com

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