Double-check it: the writing checklist

Image:  mt 23 , Flickr

Image: mt 23, Flickr

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Creating systems makes it easier to digest new information, which is why there are so many lists of best tools, epic mistakes, and checklists on the web. There are even checklists for creating written content too. The problem is that they’re produced by commercial writers.

It is obvious from the name of the job that commerce prevails over writing there. In this article, we discuss how to create high-quality articles that are interesting for readers.

The checklist

The headline should reflect the subject matter like “How to grow tomatoes on your windowsill”, “11 ways to boost e-commerce sales” and “Why startups shouldn’t use social media”.
You should not only describe the problem but also provide ways to fix it: an article should represent real value for the reader, rather than just be more words on a given subject.
Don’t address the reader directly, it can be discouraging for many.
Each statement and fact used should be backed by a link to a reliable source (e.g., big media, research of a famous company, etc.).
An expert opinion improves any article: it’s best to provide different opinions if you review a problem.
An article on how to fix a problem should contain examples and, if possible, figures (e.g., how the company introduced new project management software, how much it improved efficiency, etc.).
An article should be structured using subheadings.
Bullet points are better than just enumerating, but no more than one or two times in the article.
There should be at least one illustration, which is best placed at the beginning. In some cases, images can outline the structure and make it easier to understand but don’t overuse them.
Don’t use words that infer personal opinion like “the best” or “great”, unless they’re part of a quote from a respected source.
Don’t use software to check articles with formatting elements such as columns.
Read an article slowly before publication. Twice.

Using this checklist will enable you to write decent articles that are worthy of attention.