Microsoft Word is a simple program used to create all kinds of documents. Whether you need a professional looking document for work or just to create a school project, Microsoft Word is a perfect choice.
While the majority of Microsoft Word tutorials and guides focus on productivity, few cover the aspect of creative writing.
Microsoft Word is packed with a plethora of amazing features, and while most of these features make Word the perfect program for professional environments, it works just as well for creative writers.
1. Learn more about the article structure
If you don’t know how to properly structure your post, everything will look like a mess. This can be a challenge for creative writers, especially with broad topics.
However, there is a structure that you can easily follow. Always start with an announcement of the general theme or topic.
Then move on to topic introduction, presentation and conclusion. If you need help creating reports and structured documents in Word, you can check out this article.
2. Keyboard shortcuts are useful
One of the first things you need to learn is keyboard shortcuts for Microsoft Word. You can dramatically improve your productivity by using shortcuts as it allows you to focus more on creative writing than on formatting and stuff.
3. Improve your vocabulary
How often do you use Google to find synonyms for words you want to use in your document? Well, did you know that Word already has this feature? All you need to do is select the word, right-click on it, and select Synonyms from the drop-down menu as shown below.
In addition, you should also know more about the Finder toolset. Most of us like to use Google when writing an article, whether you’re trying to gather information or make your document richer.
With the Researcher toolset, you can easily search for all kinds of information and use filters to find higher quality content.
4. Text-to-speech is very useful
If you’ve spent all day answering emails, creating presentations, and writing documents, you’re probably tired. But if you don’t feel like typing and need to create documents, you should check out Dictation feature in Word.
This feature works effortlessly; you can talk to your computer and type what you say. It is an Office add-in not only for Microsoft Word, but also for PowerPoint and Outlook. You can learn more about this tool on Microsoft’s official website.
One thing you should keep in mind is that if you are using dictation to write your documents, it is always a good idea to double check what you have written before submitting the document.
Dictation doesn’t always work, as some of us might hope, which can also depend on your mic. Checking your document will ensure that you correct any avoidable errors.
In addition to being able to use dictation, you have the possibility to revise your article with Read aloud option.
No matter how often we reread our articles, it is common to overlook some basic mistakes. With the Read Aloud option, you can hear what you’ve typed out loud, making it much easier to spot errors.
5. Check your grammar
While we’re on the topic of avoidable errors, Microsoft Word does a great job checking your grammar. It’s always like that. But, with the latest updates, you have a lot more options for you to check out.
All you have to do is click File> Options and select Replay. You can see the images below.
From this number you can select whatever you want. You can choose to have your document corrected as you type, check your grammar and style, or hide your spelling mistakes in case you don’t write in English.
There are also advanced options, where you can add your own dictionary, correct mistakes you often make, etc.
6. Pay attention to your word count
The length of an article should depend on what you are writing and your target audience. So what is the ideal length for an article? The longer the content, the more it will be shared. Studies have shown that posts longer than 3000 words work well.
However, when your topic isn’t broad enough to cover 3,000 words, it’s always best to write shorter, more direct articles. Lucky for you, Word will keep track of the word count as you write them. You can also select a sentence / paragraph to see the number of words it contains.
7. Automatically save your work
As writers, we all want to make sure that we have backups for our backups. One of the worst things that can happen is wasting hours of work in a second, which you can avoid.
Microsoft Word allows you to configure the auto-retrieve option, which will also automatically save your document. This means that if your document suddenly closes, Microsoft Word will recover your document for a number of reasons.
8. Create notes for yourself
It doesn’t matter whether you are working with an editor or editing the document yourself, creating comments is a good way to keep up to date. Sometimes we just have too much to deal with and it’s easy to forget important things.
For example, if you are unsure of something you wrote and would like to come back to it a bit later, writing comments in this section of the document will help you remember it later.
Creative writing is easy if you know what you’re doing
There are many simple guidelines you can follow to make your creative writing tasks easier. Of course, that will largely depend on the topic or theme you are tackling.
That said, things like the Dictation option where you can talk to your computer and type everything automatically can still come in handy!
Find out how Microsoft Word and its Text-to-Speech feature can help you get more done with your documents.
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