Put your web draft away dont post it yet

Many good recipes require rest time for the food. So does good writing. When you have finished a draft and your immediate revisions, put it away. Save it and close the file.

Even for a blog, you can usually wait a bit and reread your entry before you post it. I know some bloggers who write at lunchtime and then post in the evening. Blogging software lets you put your post into draft mode before you publish it.

If you aren't blogging or writing an emergency news item, you should be able to put your draft away for a day or two.

Why let the writing rest?

When you are too close to what you have written, you are likely to miss the problems in it.

• You don't notice flaws in the logic or gaps in the information. You know what you want to say, so you don't see where your readers may not follow your points.

• You don't notice typos. You read the words you intended to write instead of the ones that are there. Or you skip over words that shouldn't be there.

You can, of course, fix and repost after publishing. The web has the tremendous advantage over paper that you can do a next edition immediately. However, that may annoy readers. For example, most blog software reposts articles to the RSS feed every time the article is edited. It can be really irritating to get the same article several times with just minor fixes each time. Your readers will wish you had read it carefully and fixed it before posting it in the first place.

Read this sentence:

Read this sentence:

Read it again carefully. Do you see the problem? Did you see it when you first read the sentence?

What can you do when reading it after it has rested?

When you open the file after a few hours or a few days, you'll read it with fresh eyes. Ask yourself:

• Can I say it more clearly? more concisely?

• Do I need to add anything to make it clearer?

• Are there headings? enough headings? in the right places? in the right words?

• Does it have extra words, missing words, typos?

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