A basic piece of advice for all writers is to know their audience. In order to reach someone, you need to have a conception of their interests, their motivations, their knowledge, and their prejudices. Whether it’s writing a note to your friend, or writing for a workshop class, or writing a text message that your mobile carrier will copy into a law enforcement database, the same principles apply.
It’s good to have a routine for writing. Sit somewhere where all you do is write, buy your favourite cup of coffee, and turn the wi-fi off on your laptop so that the hidden keyloggers don’t transmit all those aborted sentences to government keyword-monitoring servers. If there’s one thing worse than a publisher not understanding your vision, it’s a counter-terrorism unit paying you a visit at 3am! Ha-ha!
Once you get in the habit of writing for a particular audience, it becomes effortless. When you write a heartfelt message to your loved ones, you’ll automatically consider the effect your word and phrase choices will have on you, your spouse, your children, and the RCMP officers assigned to your file.