1. Is my tone correct? Readers react most strongly to a writing tone that is warm but not effusive, conversational but not chatty, informative but not pedantic, professional but not stiff. Talk to your reader as if he or she were sitting across from you.

2. Does my writing flow smoothly? Well organized writing moves logically from beginning to middle to end, with appropriate transitions and logical conclusions.

3. Is my writing economical? Overly wordy, pretentious, and patronizing writing quickly becomes tiresome. Readers have limited time and patience. Brevity and clarity best convey ideas.

4. Is my writing style interesting and engaging? Varied sentences–some long, some short–evocative language, properly used vocabulary, and active verbs give strength to writing.

5. Is my writing mechanically correct? Poor grammar, misspellings, misuses, “insider” language, jargon (especially when incorrect), and cumbersome construction all detract from the message.

6. Is my message clear? Readers want and deserve to know a writer’s purpose, point of view, and whether the writer advocates a particular course of action. They should not be left wondering where the writer stands.

7. Does my writing grab the reader? Effective writing involves the reader not just at the outset but throughout the book, again and again.