by David Tandet
When you specialize in a particular type of writing, you’re saying to people, “This is my turf. Hire me for a white paper, a marketing piece, or blog in this particular field and, (1) I won’t have to get up to speed about the basics, (2) I may be able to add some helpful insights about the subject that could be useful to the people hiring me for my services, and (3) I’m producing work that’s professional — both in writing style and in terms of the subject matter.
How do you get to that point?
Practice, practice, practice.
Read whatever you can on the subject. Finding material is easy these days — the web puts it at your fingertips.
One great exercise is to give yourself a few assignments.
Want to become a medical writer? Check out sites like the National Institutes of Health, the Mayo Clinic, and the Cleveland Clinic.
After a while, read the first half of an article on, say, melanoma, and complete the piece as if you were doing the entire thing.
Go to another article. Repeat the procedure.
You don’t have to be an M.D. to write about medicine. What you DO have to be is conversant in particular areas.
If you actually write something that IS going to have a doctor’s name attached to it, don’t worry — that physician will be going over your final draft with a fine tooth comb.
But you don’t want to be spending hours researching material that someone already familiar with a subject should be familiar with.
Immerse yourself in a subject.
Combine it with your writing skill.
Your specialty will emerge.