Do you have a favorite font? Are you dedicated to Times New Roman, or are you more of an “anything-but-Wingdings” kind of writer? Maybe you haven’t given your choice of font much thought.
I used to fall into the latter category, until at university I heard about a guy who claimed that when he wrote his essays in the Georgia font, he got better grades than when he used other fonts. Now, I received this anecdote with a healthy dose of skepticism, but when you’re drowning in essay deadlines, anything is worth a try.
I did get some solid marks with Georgia, but there were too many factors at play for me to be able to attribute my success to the font. How much difference can a font really make?
As it turns out, more than you might think, and it’s not just about getting better grades.
It can be difficult enough to find ample time to write between work, chores, exercise, and a million other little things that take up my day. Studying a second language on top of all these things only makes it more difficult.
For a little background, I moved from the U.K. to Finland in 2014 so my husband could study for a master’s degree in his home country. Since then, I have been studying the Finnish language on a near-daily basis in hopes of eventually gaining citizenship.
My only previous experience with foreign languages is obligatory French classes in school over 10 years ago, so it has been a real challenge to take on one of the more difficult European languages. I once heard somebody describe Finnish as “drunken elvish,” which is an accurate description. For instance, the Finnish phrase for “goodnight” is “hyvää yö,” which is pronounced as “hoover ooh-oh,” and difficult for me to get out.
Being a professional writer has only made it harder, since the English language is such an important part of my job. It can be incredibly jarring to go from writing in English to learning how an entirely different language works.
Although my studies have reduced the amount of time I would ideally like to spend writing each day, and it is a challenge to try and perfect two entirely different languages at the same time, in some ways it has been a surprising benefit to my writing. I’ve also noticed that many of the rules of language learning can also be applied to writing.
I decided to take my writing to the next level a few years back and put my creativity to the test by starting my own freelance writing service.
It sounded easy back then; it wasn’t, and to this day … it still isn’t.
But it can be a little less daunting with the correct guidance and mentorship along the way.
Writing guest posts has a long list of benefits: You can make a little extra money, get links back to your website, have a byline to show to potential employers or clients, and gain a platform to share your voice and your opinions.
However, pitching stories and article ideas to editors is an art, and many writers do it wrong. Up until recently, I was one of them. I used to pride myself on the huge number of pitches I sent out each week, trying to get a guest post published on a website or a feature accepted for a print magazine.