Ask Lucille Ossai #2: How do I develop writing skills?

The scenario:
I refer to our discussion during the one-on-one coaching last year. You encouraged me to start writing. I still have the desire to do so, and for a year now, I am still battling with how to start.
The challenge I have is that I am not creative enough. I don’t have content, so all this put together has prevented me from exploring the world of writing.
What can I do?
– Ms O
Lagos, Nigeria.

My advice: 

First, I appreciate your honesty about struggling to write. I know from experience that it’s daunting to put your thoughts out there because of the fear of failing. Let me reassure you that although I’ve been blogging for over six years, I too face a similar panic about what to write when a new article is due.
Second, I’d like to give you tips on how to start writing, and what to do to improve your skills.

Tip 1: Read well-written content daily

Develop this habit. 

Content could be varied – articles, short stories, novels, magazines, newspapers, etc. Also, read outside your field. It doesn’t matter what you read as long as the materials are written well. Avoid poorly written content often rife in certain entertainment circles.
Reading regularly will expose you to new ideas, good vocabulary, modern grammar, as well as interesting expressions and constructions. Over time, all these things enrich your content and sharpen your writing ability.
Tip 2: Write often

This tip directly answers your question.

I strongly recommend that you start a blog. In our discussion a year ago, I mentioned some free versions such as WordPress, Blogger, Medium and Wix. It takes about ten minutes to set up a blog, so please do so immediately after reading this post.

Before you launch your blog, pick one theme you’re passionate about. It could be cuisine, travel, fashion, gender equality, leadership, politics, entrepreneurship or technology. You could draw inspiration from trending topics on social media or in the news. It’s crucial that you select a topic you’re deeply interested in because that will make it easy for you to begin the writing process. You’d also be motivated to continue to write after the first six months. 

To select a theme, do this quick exercise: take a sheet of paper and write five topics you’re interested in. Next, rate your level of interest and whittle them down to three options. Now consider the one topic you have the strongest affinity for, the one that you could talk about for hours with a close friend.

That’s the theme you choose. Don’t agonise about not knowing everything about that topic, because the more you write and research, the more knowledgeable you’d become.  

Finally, write. You could start by writing a post of 100 words.  Write for yourself at the beginning and don’t worry if no one reads your blog. But be clear about your expectations. Set a realistic schedule for writing and stick to it. For example, you could decide to write twice a month as a minimum. Then as you become more invested in your niche and in your blogging journey, you could increase the frequency of posting.

Bonus tip:

Even though you’re writing to explore your passion and to boost your writing skills, ensure you edit and proofread your work to the best of your ability before posting online. This step is critical to your progress if you’re serious about becoming a better writer. Imagine that each article would be published by a reputable magazine or newspaper, then edit accordingly. 

For more information, the two articles below provide invaluable tips, as well as resources to improve business writing:

Begin your blogging journey today.
Contact me a year from today to tell me about your writing experience.

I wish you the best of luck!

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Need help with improving your communication skills?

Hire my services for:

vCommunications training for your staff and executives;

vOne-on-one coaching sessions in speeches/presentations; 

vSpeeches and keynote presentations at your corporate events;

vWorkshops and training sessions in business writing;

vAssignments in writing (content creation, executive speeches, etc.).

vMedia appearances (radio and television).

Let me help you get results. 

Contact me:

A) Send an email to
B) Call for a free consultation: 

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International:  +234 704 631 0592  


N.B: Image is courtesy of Jeroen van Oostrom, via Second image is courtesy of Stuart Miles, via

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