Asking people where they buy their donuts is kind of like asking them who they’re going to vote for in an election. They invariably have strong points of view, where they grew up usually has a lot to do with it, and it’s never a good idea to try to convince others that they’ve got it all wrong.
Considering that Americans eat over 10 billion donuts every year (that’s 31 donuts per person if you’re wondering), it’s a food that many of us seem to be extremely familiar with. And the good news is that, unlike politics, donuts make it easy for people to come together. After all, no matter whether they’re Dunkin’ Donuts, Krispy Kreme, Honey Dew, Entenmann’s, or any other variety, who’s ever going to say no to a donut?
Plus, donuts have another thing going for them that you may not even be aware of: Eating them can help you become a better writer.
It’s a shocking revelation — trust us, we know — so take a moment to let that sink in. Yes, gobbling down your preferred variety of fried, doughy goodness could just be your ticket to becoming a better writer!
And, in honor of National Donut Day — which a) is tomorrow and b) is actually a real thing that you can read about here, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to explain how. So sit back and salivate while we enlighten you on all the things you can learn about writing from our dear friend the donut.
You’ve always got to nail the basics.
It doesn’t matter how much frosting you put on your donuts or how much jelly or cream you put in them. If you don’t start out with a really good batter or dough, you’re never going to wind up with a great product.
The same is true with the content you write. Sure, you can dress it up with great pictures or catchy headlines, but at the end of the day if your writing isn’t any good, your readers will see through that and be disappointed. So make sure that you focus on writing clear, engaging content that’s both easy to read and enjoyable.
Toppings and flavors bring everything to life.
Maybe you like sprinkles on your donuts or just a basic glaze. Or maybe you’re a bit more adventurous and enjoy bacon, Fruit Loops, or cayenne pepper on yours (which, by the way, are all options you can and should avail yourself of if you ever have the opportunity to visit the incomparable VooDoo Doughnut). Whatever it is that floats your boat, those extra flourishes probably speak to you and keep you coming back again and again.
It’s the same thing with writing. While you can’t garnish your blog posts with bacon (oh, if only!), what you can do is embellish your content with a really distinctive tone of voice that makes it stand out as being uniquely yours. That’s something that great brands are doing more and more because it makes them stand out and helps them to build a stronger connection with their customers.
Sometimes you need a twist.
By default, most of us think of donuts as circles of dough with a hole missing in the center. But let’s not forget about the twist. Sure it’s less common, but all the more interesting, intriguing, and unexpected as a result.
When it comes to writing, it can be easy to get stuck in cookie-cutter mode, where you just crank out the same thing over and over again. That’s boring for you and for your readers, so don’t let it happen. Instead, figure out how to include twists and turns in your writing and to deliver the unexpected (see also: blog posts comparing content and donuts).
Quality trumps quantity.
Given the choice, would you rather have a dozen mediocre donuts or one killer donut? Okay, admittedly, how hungry you are while reading this could sway your decision, but under normal circumstances you’d probably go for the one great donut, right?
Well it’s the same with content. People want to consume good stuff, so don’t waste their time (or yours) publishing a bunch of content that just isn’t up to par. Instead, focus on creating the best content that you can. You may not be able to publish as much as a result, but you’ll get much better results in the long run if you do.
A donut a day?
OK, it’s time to come clean. We don’t actually recommend that you start eating donuts every day. But, having said that, we do hope you’ve enjoyed our tribute to National Donut Day, and that you can take inspiration from the mighty donut the next time you sit down to write.
Happy eating and writing!
(Don’t be shy — tweet us your best selfie enjoying National Donut Day and we’ll buy you another! #acrolinx)