Communication is easy, or so we are often told. Pay attention, listen carefully, write well, etc. Well, it really isn’t that simple.
The human brain works much faster than one can talk, or than the eye can read. Thus, the listener or reader tends to lose focus on the presented material and go off on other tangents of thought.
There are techniques for keeping the listener (s) focussed on what you are saying. Using body language, eye contact, using the listener’s name and many others.
Once the written work is presented the author becomes invisible until a reader responds. Only after the material is read is a reader likely to respond.
But, keeping a reader focussed on your written material isn’t as simple because there is no interaction. Once the written work is presented the author becomes invisible until a reader responds. Only after the material is read is a reader likely to respond. If you lose the reader early on then there is no result from your writing effort. So what to do?
It goes without much explanation that you must “grab” the reader’s attention in the first couple of sentences. Keeping that reader’s attention to finish reading the material and to be focused on the message presented is another matter. The more technical the material the tougher the job. I would suggest that the best results will be found in being brief.
Readers tend to lose focus and interest after a couple of paragraphs. If you haven’t set the hook of interest by then the reader drops off. If you can’t make all your points in a page, then perhaps you need to rethink your article or break it into two or more articles.
Personally, I seldom read an article that goes past one page. I also lose interest in the material where the author seems to be trying to impress with his/her vocabulary. I have no desire in going to find a dictionary to look up multiple words. Of course, I am only one reader, but in today’s busy world I suspect that more and more people want brief, clear, and to the point articles.
Get overly wordy at your own peril. My dictionary calls that “verbose”. 🙂