In this series of tips for aspiring and new authors, today we discuss the relation between an Author's writing style and your purpose for which the book has been published.
When an aspiring author comes to us, I often ask them…. “WHY do you wish to publish this book?” What seems like such a logical, innocuous question often leaves the author stumped!
While there are a great many of us that write to inform, express or even relax, there are some who write for the sake of writing…. and believe me, there’s nothing wrong in that. But when it comes to publishing your writings, you should be very clear as to WHY you want to publish your book.
There are several decisions that need to be made as part of the process of publishing your book. Decisions such as the book's price, size, or even the number of copies to be printed will depend on the 'WHY' of publishing your book. This is what makes, “why do I want to publish my book?” a super important question indeed!
And you should have this clarity not just AFTER writing the book, rather WHILE writing your book. Because your writing style should be suited to the purpose of the book and to your target audience.
So, if you are an aspiring author, here are a few simplified set of rules you can follow while writing your first book:
1. Always keep you target audience in mind. The length of your sentences, the complexity of your sentence formation, and the complexity of your vocabulary should be appropriate to the target audience. Resist the urge to flout your linguistic prowess unless your readers are likely to appreciate it. (it’s okay for P.G. Wodehouse and Shashi Tharoor-ji to use the King’s English at times, but for the common reader, bombastic language is usually a turn-off)
2. Set a tone: Depending on what you are writing and why you are publishing, the tone of your writing may be,
· Instructional: as in textbooks, and user manuals
· Informative: as in tech reviews, financial articles, etc.
· Questioning: as in political discourses, religious debates etc.
· Introspective or open ended: for self-help books, developmental articles etc.
3. Connect your writing style with the tone: It is important to get you message across in the way you want. Your communication will be marred with NOISE if your writing style is not consistent the tone of your book. For example, if your tone is instructional, but your writing style is open ended rhetoric based, the reader will end up with more questions un-answered instead of getting information.
Set out below is an (over)simplified table explaining the relation between purpose- tone and style
JOY to the writers of the world, and Blessings to our readers.