Monday, September 25, 2017

5 Writing Tips from Famous Authors That You Can Apply in the IELTS Exam

Writing should be easy: just sit down, write, edit, and revise. Sadly, this is not always the case.

There are times when it is easier to put down your pen and stop. There are moments when the right words to communicate your message will elude you. These are only some of the struggles that every writer must face. Do not let them derail your IELTS review.

ielts review

Even famous authors go through these challenges. And, as individuals who subject themselves to the torture that is writing every day, accomplished authors have earned a lot of wisdom about their craft.

Here are some of their writing tips that you can use in the IELTS exam.

1.    “The first draft of everything is shit.” – Ernest Hemingway

Who is he? Ernest Hemingway is one of the most prolific American writers of the 20th century. A novelist, journalist, and short story writer, he won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954. Many of his stories are considered classics of American literature.

How does this apply to the IELTS exam?  When writing your essays for the IELTS writing exam, the first thing you have to do is to create a draft. Write down everything you want to include in your essay. Use bullets to outline how you want your composition to progress.

The thing about first drafts, however, is that they suck. And, quite frankly, they should. First drafts are meant to help you lay down all the information you need. So, do not beat yourself up if your initial writing is full of grammatical flaws. Give yourself permission to suck on your first draft. Keep this in mind during your IELTS review.

2.    “Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” – Mark Twain

Who is he? Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pseudonym Mark Twain, is an American writer, publisher, lecturer, and businessman. He wrote the classic novels “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” and its sequel “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” 

How does this apply to the IELTS exam? While you certainly do not have an editor when you take the IELTS writing exam, Mark Twain’s tip to drop the word “very” is a sound one. Aside from being an “intensifier,” the word “very” does not contribute anything to a sentence. Why use two words when one can suffice? Avoid using the word “very” to increase the impact of the word it follows. Expand your vocabulary during your IELTS review to avoid this problem.

3.    "Interesting verbs are seldom very interesting." – Jonathan Franzen

Who is he? Jonathan Franzen is an American essayist and novelist. His novel “The Corrections” won him multiple awards including a National Book Award, a James Tait Black Memorial Prize. It was also a Pulitzer Prize for Fiction finalist. His other works also garnered critical acclaim.

How does this apply to the IELTS exam? Showcasing extensive vocabulary in your essay is a good way to improve your test results; however, make sure you do not get carried away. There is a fine line between using refined language and over-complicating your composition. So, focus on getting your message across when you write your essay. Make your statements simple and concise.

4.    “The road to hell is paved with adverbs.” – Stephen King

Who is he? Stephen King is a “New York Times” bestselling novelist best known for his works in the horror, fantasy, suspense, and supernatural genres. Many of his works—like “Carrie,” “IT,” “Pet Cemetery,” and “The Shining”—have been adapted for film and television.

How does this apply to the IELTS exam? One of the things that you will review when you enroll in the IELTS review center in Makati is the proper usage of adverbs. Using adverbs is a great way to add flavor to verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. However, when applied excessively or improperly, they can mark you out as an amateur writer. So, make sure you do not go overboard with your adverbs.

5.    “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time—or the tools—to write. Simple as that.” – Stephen King
How does this apply to the IELTS exam? Great writers are great readers. Reading can do wonders for your writing skills. It can help you enrich your vocabulary, gain new perspectives, and expand your knowledge. Reading can also hone your awareness for grammar and structure.
Benefit from the wisdom of the masters. Integrate these writing tips to your IELTS review to increase your chances of getting your band score goals.

Do you want to hone your writing skills for the IELTS exam? Enroll in the IELTS review center in Makati today!


  • Cooper, Belle Beth. "6 of the Best Writing Tips & Advice from Successful Writers | Buffer." Social. April 19, 2016. Accessed August 29, 2017.
  • Delistraty, Cody. "21 Harsh But Eye-Opening Writing Tips from Great Authors." Thought Catalog. September 24, 2013. Accessed August 29, 2017.
  • Evan. "19 Amazing Writing Tips from Famous Writers." Evan S. Porter. May 29, 2017. Accessed August 29, 2017.


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