From the blog

An Epic List of Online Writing Courses

by Dorothy Hunter May 21, 2014

Some writers are lucky enough to know what they want to be before college. They choose majors that will help them hone their craft and give them a head start in their careers. But thereare people who knew too late that writing was their calling. So now that theywant to be a better writer, going back to school seems a bit too late.

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7 Free Tools to Make You a Better and Faster Writer

by Robert Morris Mar 19, 2014

If you enjoy writing and have an abundance of creative ideas, you can certainly turn your talent into a rewarding career. However, there is one thing you need to understand: you have to take this challenge seriously, because decent content doesn’t come without spending time in thinking, searching for sources, writing, rewriting and proofreading until you reach something close to perfection. Whatever problems you are facing while writing; there are online tools and resources that can help you overcome them!

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What Are Homophones and Why You Should Care

by Naomi Tepper Mar 17, 2014

It's important to be able to distinguish between homophones when writing. The results of using the wrong word in your writing can range from confusing to amusing. In the end, if you misuse too many homophones, your reader might just come to the conclusion that they can't trust your writing at all.

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Alternative to Turnitin and WriteCheck

by ProWritingAid Jan 23, 2014

Turnitin is a plagiarism checker for students and teachers. It allows you to check your text against billions of web-pages and academic papers to identify potential citation issues, or un-original content.

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Online plagiarism check

by ProWritingAid Jan 23, 2014

Our plagiarism checker is designed to help you detect unoriginal content in your writing. Once you have detected unoriginal content you will be able to add proper citations to your document.

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Using transitions in your writing

by ProWritingAid Dec 03, 2013

Transitions are the cement that hold our writing together. They are the short phrases that draw relationships between and within the sentences in a text. For example, "for example" is a transition, as are "likewise", "similarly", and "thus".

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5 Tips on Creating Your Own Holden Caulfield

by Paige Donahue Nov 25, 2013

It was in 1951 when J.D. Salinger's The Catcher in the Rye changed the face of teen fiction. Holden Caulfield became the poster child for the young adult hero generations of writers after Salinger still characterize. But the landscape of young adult literature has changed, and it has evolved into one of the most read publication right now.

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Easy Steps to Improve your Writing

May 19, 2013

Improving your writing is about more than just spelling and grammar.

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Improve your Writing Tip #17 - Don't repeat sentence starts

May 10, 2013

Unless you're deliberately using repetition of sentence starts as a linguistic device (anaphora) then you should try and avoid repeating yourself. This is the classic 'He did this. He did that. He did the other thing.'.

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Improve your Writing Tip #16 - No wasted words

May 10, 2013

Redundancies are where you say the same thing twice in two different ways. For example, a pair of twins, as twins are by definition a pair. It’s easy to use a redundancy in a phrase without even noticing, for example, (absolutely) essential. Why include words that add nothing more to the meaning? There's hundreds of redundant expressions that can slip into your writing. ProWritingAid highlights redundant expressions in your writing so that you can remove them.

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Improve your Writing Tip #15 - Keep it short

May 10, 2013

People have a limited attention span, especially in the era of the 140 character tweet. Try to restrict sentences to 25-30 words. Over 50 words in a sentence and you're being long-winded. Make sure that you include some shorter, punchier sentences to raise excitement.

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Improve your Writing Tip #14 - Strengthen your metaphors

May 10, 2013

A strong metaphor has an unparalleled ability to convey your meaning. We understand new things by relating them to things that we already understand. A metaphor does this for us; like putting a round peg into a round hole, and a square peg in a square hole.

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Improve your Writing Tip #13 - Always delete words that you misspell and type them again

May 10, 2013

This is a great tip for improving your spelling. In today’s world of spell checkers it's easy to go on misspelling words forever as you just correct them with the spellchecker. This is a waste of your time, so why not spend a bit of time upfront improving your spelling to save time in the future. Every time you misspell a word delete the whole word and re-type it again paying attention to the spelling. We only learn if we are rewarded for doing it, or not punished for not doing it. Having to re-type a word is a punishment for getting it wrong. You’ll soon improve your spelling rather than have to re-type the word each time.

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Improve your Writing Tip #12 - Always get someone else to read your work

May 10, 2013

It is amazing how difficult it is to catch all of the errors in a document yourself. Your eye just skips over them because it knows what should be there and just assumes it is. Proofreading a document is a difficult skill to master as it requires a huge amount of concentration but it is even harder if it is your own document.

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Improve your Writing Tip #11 - Read your work aloud

May 10, 2013

There is a big difference between reading your work aloud and in your head. It's easier to read what you think it says in your head than it is to read it aloud.

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Improve your Writing Tip #10 - Chop away deadwood

May 10, 2013

It's easier to write fewer words right? It seems not. For some reason lots of people have a tendency to use deadwood phrases. These are the wordy ways of saying simple thing. For example, we might write "has the ability to", instead of just saying "can". It's really easy to use one of these phrases by accident and they make your writing much less readable. Look through your writing for a simpler way of saying the same thing.

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Improve your Writing Tip #9 - Beware of Purple Prose

May 10, 2013

You know you're clever, and you want other to know it too. Thinking like this can lead you straight into one of the biggest pitfalls of the aspiring writer - Purple Prose. Purple Prose is writing that is so extravagant, and flowery that it ruins the flow of your writing by drawing excessive attention to itself. This includes use of clever words (why use pachydermic when you can just say elephant), adverbs (we've mentioned their evils before), and multiple adjectives.

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Improve your Writing Tip #8 - Use alliteration to aid memory

May 10, 2013

Alliteration is the repetition of the initial stressed consonant sound in a set of writing. A favourite of advertizers, marketeers, and poets. "Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Pickled Peppers" is a classic example of alliteration.

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Improve your Writing Tip #7 - Don't repeat yourself

May 10, 2013

Repeated words or phrases can set off an echo in the reader's mind. That subconscious feeling of "Didn’t I just read that?" can detract from what you are trying to say. It is incredibly difficult for you, as a writer, to pick out repeated words and phrases in their own work because you are so familiar with it. When you are editing it is not uncommon to re-read the same piece several times so that you become impervious to that echo feeling.

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Improve your Writing Tip #6 - Clichés are boring

May 10, 2013

Clichés are boring! Clichés have been around the block; they’ve run their course. Clichés are what you write when you don’t have the energy or inspiration to think of something original to say. It’s alright to use them in your first draft, as thinking of a better metaphor may take time and interrupt your flow, but always try to cut them when editing your writing. Your readers don’t want to see a cliché; they want to see a fresh, new metaphor that gets them thinking in different and exciting ways.

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