March 5, 2016

Write without "I"


It's surprisingly difficult to write a blog article without using the word "I". Removing "I" completely is not your goal. But whittling down its use could be.

How do you know when you have a problem? When every paragraph starts with "I", that's a good signal. (Guilty here.)

We want to connect with our readers and that will involve sharing our thoughts, feelings and experiences. Hard to do without using "I" sometimes. But remember, this is marketing and it's not about you.

Here are a few things to consider:
  • Bury the leading "I", especially at the beginning of a paragraph, by reorganizing the sentence.
  • Don't substitute the "I" with a past participle. For example, "I wrote in my journal" is still better than "my journal was written in".
  • Put yourself in your reader's shoes. Come at the topic from a different angle. Think about how a reader might retell your message to someone else. Reorganize your thoughts and your sentences.
  • Eliminate unnecessary "I" stories. It's natural to want to talk about ourselves but consider how many "I"s are really necessary to get the point across.
  • Edit without mercy. All of these are things that may be best done after you've had your creative time, during editing.
Writing an article without using "I" can be done - you've just read one. Well... sort of.

photo by Kmeron / Flickr

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