No matter where you go or what you do,
you live your entire life within the confines of your head.
~Terry Josephson

Use Your Head

Writing isn’t a pen to paper activity. It’s a brain to pen to paper activity. Thinking is necessary preparation for writing. Before you pick up a pen or place your hands on the keyboard, get in the habit of giving thought to what you want to say. Know your purpose. Do your research. Organize your information. Choose your style (formal, casual, professional). All of these are decisions a writer must make. If you take the time to make them before you start, writing will be a much easier and smoother process. (

Tell a Story

Every time you tell a story, you’re tapping into primitive drives to listen and pay attention. As humans, we’re wired to sit up, pay attention, and become alert when someone says, “Let me tell you a story. . . .”

Ask a Question

Every time you ask readers a question, you’re engaging their brains. The human mind doesn’t like unfinished business, we want answers.

Keep Using Those Bulleted Lists

Every time you make a bulleted list of “5 Ways to . . .” you’re drawing your readers to quick easy short cuts to solve a problem. Their brains love short cuts and easy-to-remember lists. (


Eliminate Distractions

Writing does not work well with multi-tasking or background noise. It’s best done in quiet, or with some mellow music playing. Do your writing in full-screen. Turn off email notifications, turn off your cell phone, turn off the TV, and clear off your desk. You can stuff everything in a drawer for now until you have time to sort everything out later, but don’t get into sorting mode now, because it’s writing time! Clear away distractions so you can work without interruption. (

Try the 3-Day Writing Method

On the first day, write in a stream of consciousness; on the second, refine your writing and fix grammar errors; on the third day, polish your writing with better adjectives and clearer sentences. (

And Now for Something Completely Different

Finally, James Altucher leaves us with one final (strange) writing tip, but this one doesn’t have anything to do with the brain:

Take a huge bowel movement every day. And you won’t see that

on any other list on how to be a better writer. If your body doesn’t flow

then your brain won’t flow. Eat more fruit if you have to.


About the author: is written by Carol Zombo, and gives grammar and writing tips to bloggers. You can connect with Blog Rehab on Twitter and Facebook.