How to write better documents


Documents writing

In today’s world, people are doing as much writing (if not more) than they ever have. Writing effectively allows you to express your ideas clearly and coherently, and it is an essential part of corresponding with others in the workforce. In the professional world, being able to write well is a key to being successful in nearly every field.
There are several rules and guidelines that can be followed for effective document writing. It is important that writers manage to capture their readers’ attention so the message can be transformed precisely. Among the many guidelines here are some tips that may be applied when writing to prepare an effective document.

Grab the reader’s attention

  1. Choose your content carefully: Try not to tell everything, just pick the most important parts, be selective about what content to include in your document that will attract the reader's attention.
  2. Select or create a document theme: A theme is a coordinated set of fonts, colors, and graphic effects that you can apply to your entire document to make it look outstanding and easy to read, especially when emphasizing a point.
  3. Create your own set of styles: A style is a set of formatting that you give a name. Styles help you format the elements of your document consistently, and they can also save you a lot of time and work.
  4. Use graphics to illustrate key points: Graphics will help you to use less words and convey the message in a more detailed format. You don’t have to be an artist to add a great-looking diagram or chart to your documents.

Clearly communicate your information

  1. Use tables for page layouts: Tables can be used as organizers; they make documents look great and simple to manage. You can use them to hold text, graphics, or other tables. They can simplify even the most complex layouts.
  2. Use heading styles and a table of contents: It will be easier for readers to follow through your documents if it is well organized, for instance use headings appropriately to outline your topics within the context of the document.
  3. Use footnotes for supporting details: Footnote or endnote can be used to make an important reference for a point within the document. They take almost no time to insert and keep supporting information out of the way but easily accessible.
  4. Add an appendix: Use an appendix if you have supporting information that's too lengthy for footnotes or too detailed, such as an extensive data table. This is a separate section at the back of your document, usually identified by a header and a different page number format in the footer.

Stay in control of your documents

  1. Know what your document is doing: While writing it is advisable to use formatting marks and the reveal formatting task pane to keep track of and change the formatting in your document. Viewing formatting marks helps you quickly see what's going on in your document.
  2. Save editing time by using different views: Different views are designed to help you accomplish different things.
      • Print Layout: This view will allow you to see exactly what your final document will look like, it also enables you to edit headers, footers, and footnotes right on the page.
      • Draft: This view shows you the body content of your document only without page layout. This is the best view to use in very long, large documents when you need to just edit document text.
  3. Place graphics that stay put and look great: To avoid your graphic from moving or changing when you edit the text around it, try using the In Line With Text layout. This layout option causes your graphic to behave similar to text so that it’s easier to manage. For example, you can change the paragraph alignment from left to center in order to center the graphic horizontally on the page.
  4. Use Paste Special to control the look of text, tables, and graphics: Instead of using the Paste command to add or move content in your documents, try Paste Special. This feature can help you get exactly the result you want.
1. Krieger, S (2007) 12 guidelines for creating better documents. Retrieved on the 9th September 2010.

Want to know more?

This another website that will give you some guidelines for writing a better documents
Another site with some more tips for writing an effective documen
An excellent website that will guide through your writing with the use of one program, known as WritingDEN's Tips-O-Matic

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