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Posted by on Apr 3, 2014

Tips for Government Managers to Overcome Writer’s Block

186510025Whether writing a business plan, memo, or report, one of the hardest tasks government managers face in writing is getting started.

In my recent book, The Government Manager’s Guide to Plain Language, I offer some  tips to help you break through the writer’s block we all experience—and also to help you make an initial assessment of what you have written before passing it along for editing and review.



To make the draft stage easier and more productive, consider the following steps:

• Once you have a complete outline in hand, write your first draft quickly.

• Schedule blocks of uninterrupted time for drafting.

• Begin with the easiest section.

• After you complete the first draft, walk away from it.

• After you get some distance, take a few minutes to review your draft with fresh eyes.

• Assess the following before going into the editing stage:

– Did I explain my purpose clearly?

– Did I consider the role, knowledge level, attitude, and other characteristics of the reader?

– Does the overall organization of the draft make sense?

– Did I provide closure? (For example, did you tell readers exactly what you want them to do?)

After taking a cursory look at your first draft, you’re ready to go on to the editing stage.

Excerpted with permission from The Government Manager’s Guide to Plain Language by Judith Gillespie Myers, PhD, a book in the new series The Government Manager’s Essential Library.  © 2013 by Management Concepts, Inc. All rights reserved.

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