Writing Step-by-Step Instructions Made Easy
Do you know any useful Web tricks that make online marketing easier? Do you create unique crafts that other people would like to re-create? Do you stay updated on current cooking techniques that make meal preparation easier? Do you want to share your how-to stories with the world? Are you unsure about how to write a how-to article? It's easier than you think!
Hello Writing Friends!
Last week, a friend and I were chatting away and doing some brainstorming. I asked her to hold me accountable for a how-to article I had started. She mentioned how much she disliked writing how-to articles. Personally, I enjoy using my writing as a teaching tool.
Today I'd like to share with you a few tips and hints to create a how-to article that is unique, useful and updated.
Reuse Your Project to Get It Right
Wash, rinse and repeat. Build your confidence as a how-to writer by re-creating your project several times before you sit down to write. You'll learn something new each time you make a beauty elixir, use a smartphone app, start tomato seeds, decorate chocolate cupcakes or refurbish a picture frame.
Each time you re-create your project, take lots of photographs. Think of your photos as your notepad, a place to store your writing ideas. Each of my attempts to Recycle Egg Shells to Make Sidewalk Chalk resulted in a slightly different result. It took several attempts to get the chalk recipe just right.
Tip: Pictures are only worth a thousand words if those pictures help the step-by-step instructions tell the story. Show readers exactly how to do a task and the result they should expect. Show the before and the after.
Reduce Your Project into Steps
The trick to the how-to article is to separate your project into a series of steps. Creating these steps is similar to writing an outline. Look for 6 to 8 items that need to be completed to perform the task. The pictures you took while you completed your project will give you some clues.
Your project may also give you clues to its natural step-by-step process. A project that I started many years ago to Recycle Avocado Seeds and Grow Luxurious Trees lent itself to steps describing each of the growth stages of the avocado tree.
Remember, Revisions Are Your Best Friend
There's always room for improvement in a how-to article. Friends may suggest a different approach that you didn't think about. Add it as a tip in the appropriate step. You may learn more about the subject. Share your new-found knowledge and update your how-to. While re-reading your article, you may think of a better way of explaining a step. Never hesitate to make your work better.
Writing the how-to article is fun. Sharing your knowledge and making new discoveries is a rewarding experience.
Until next week, happy how-to writing!