- The first sentence, first paragraph are the most important. Don't bury the lede!
- The next most important thing is the last paragraph.
- Keep middle points well defined, ideally with descriptive headers.
- Don't try to broaden so it's relevant for "everyone". Writing for one person is the best.
- 85% perfect is way better than 100% perfect. You'll get diminishing returns.
- Re-read and remove unnecessary words/sentences, especially superfluous words like "very".
- Expect people to skim. Think about the "shape", e.g. squint test.
- Fleshing out a sloppy draft at night and then refining in the morning is a great pattern for me.
- Don't use a clever/cryptic title. Be descriptive!
Some of this stuff is probably inline with how they teach essay writing, but I can't remember any of those lessons from school.
This post took about 60 seconds to jot down and 60 seconds to review. I think it will be useful to a lot of folks. It's probably not perfect, but you don't need to spend hours to create useful work.