Discovering Our “Inner-Writer” So, You Want to Write an Article? Betsy Tucker, CPPA Federal Center Chapter Sunflower Systems
Objectives Step 1: Define your Objective Step 2: Formulate a Thesis (What’s your point?) Step 3: Organize Supporting Points (and non-supporting points) Ready to write! Step 4: Conquer the Blank Page Step 5: Lure the Reader Step 6: Keep the Reader Engaged Step 7: Conclude Your Work Step 8: Give it a Title!
Step 1: Determine your Objective • Why are you writing this Property Professional Article? • Who is your audience? • Are you persuading? Educating? Both? • Why should the reader pay attention to what you have to say?
Step 2: Formulate your Thesis Strong Thesis: “Don’t be lured by the most expensive and shiny RFID solution! You can easily navigate your way through the maze of RFID solutions to determine which can best solve your property management challenges simply by knowing what each has to offer.” Weak Thesis: “Many types of RFID exist for the management of personal property, ranging from very expensive to quite inexpensive.” *A strong thesis statement makes a point or puts forth a point of view or proposes a new idea, doesn’t simply state a fact.
Step 3: Organizing Supporting Points (and non-supporting points) • Researched Facts/Studies • Personal Experiences • Real-life Scenarios • Use on Non-Supporting Points
What Have you been Reading? • Novels • Journals • Studies • Article What entertains you?
Step 4: Conquering the Blank Page Make an Outline = Halfway Home
Step 4: Conquering the Blank Page Intro Paragraph = Most important part of any article • Lure reader • Present thesis • Set your tone • Prepare reader about what to expect in the next paragraphs/pages
Step 5: Luring the Reader I. Catchy opening Sentence “You want a Ford Sedan. It has everything you need. But you can also afford the Ferrari. No-brainer, right?” Versus “You should thoroughly research all types of RFID solutions before choosing the one that is best to suit your specific needs.”
Step 5: Luring the Reader II. Relate to the Reader Ex: “Have you ever purchased something because it was advertised as “the best” only to realize that something much more affordable would have done the trick?” Or Ex: “Consider this scenario: you set up an automatically-debited monthly payment for some personal effect, such as a cell phone, and one day you take a look at your statement and realize to your utter shock and dismay that you’re being charged well over that monthly fee and you have been for months. How could you not have realized this sooner? Would you have taken action if you had?”
Step 5: Luring the Reader III. Get to Your Point Quickly • A few introductory sentences are fine • Reach your point or “thesis” quickly • Clearly State Thesis-let the reader know what he/she is in for!
Step 6: Keeping Reader Engaged • Be concise, not “wordy” – respect readers’ time • Ok to use questions as transition/inflection points • Vary sentence structure • Organize into logical paragraphs with segues • Maintain a tone • Avoid distractions (i.e. typos) • Avoid repetition: you’ve said it once, that’s enough!
Step 6: Keeping Reader Engaged • Be concise, not “wordy” Ex: We all know that over the past decade, there has been an extremely large and notable increase in the overall number as well as types of RFID solutions offered to organizations. How about: Ex 2: Over the past decade, a wide variety of RFID solutions have become available thanks to advancements in technology.
Step 6: Keeping Reader Engaged • Avoid Repetition Ex: A fixed, active RFID solution is a wise investment for those highly sensitive items that require round-the-clock monitoring. This type of solution will ensure that highly sensitive items that need continuous tracking are monitored at all times. *Both sentences state virtually the same thought.
Step 7: Concluding Your Work Tie up article, don’t simply state it all over again Good conclusions: • Propose next steps for the reader • Predict events to come based on thesis • Explain why this article needed to be written • Provide questions for further thought/research
Step 8: Give it a Title • Example A • Title: Change Management is Necessary in all Organizations • Opening Sentence: Change Management is a necessary function in all organizations to effect smooth procedural transitions. • Example B • Title: Change: It’s Happening, Like it or Not! • Opening Sentence: People don’t like change. Organizations like it even less. So how can we, as property managers, effect change AND get our colleagues on board?
Step 8: Give it a Title Title Should: • Relate to topic • Not too wordy, less is more • Make it CATCHY!! Puns OK RFID Solutions You Can “Have it Your Way” with RFID The Straight Dope on RFID
Questions? Thank you!! Betsy Tucker, CPPA Sunflower Systems firstname.lastname@example.org