The Essential 5-Step Writing Process for All Writers (2023)

Writing can be intimidating, even if you are an experienced writer. But a process – by breaking it down to simpler steps – can help you write faster and better. After all the way you write affects how well you write.

And a proper writing process can make all the difference.

The goal of this guide is to help you learn how to properly write, whether you are writing a research paper or a blog post for your website.

Read on to

  • learn what the writing process is
  • see the different writing processes (3-step, 4-step, 5-step, 6-step, and 7-step) that you might have come across before you landed on this page compared next to each other
  • understand the proper writing process with each step explained in detail
  • find useful templates that you can use throughout to simplify the writing process

Let’s dive right in.

What is the Writing Process?

Let’s start from the very beginning – by clarifying what it is first.

The writing process refers to the steps someone takes to compose text. That said, every individual writer follows his or her own writing process and it usually comes naturally to them.

(Video) 5 Steps of the Academic Writing Process | Scribbr 🎓

But there are basic writing process steps that are universally referred to and followed. Understanding them will help you develop your very own writing process more easily.

Still not convinced why you need to follow a process? Following a proper writing process is actually important for a few good reasons

  • It will help you write better and faster. By breaking down the task into manageable steps, you can do away with the struggling and procrastinating.
  • Since you will be following individual steps, you can focus on each better, which in turn will be reflected in the quality of the final copy.
  • Practice makes perfect. The more you follow the process, the more it will improve your writing skills.
  • At the end of it, you’ll have something that is well-written, free of grammar or spelling errors, properly formatted and of greater quality.

Many different processesfor writing

If you have already searched the term writing process on the web, you may have come across several different types of it. Some claiming to have 3 steps, 4 steps or even 7 steps. Here’s what we found;

If you look closely, you’ll see that they refer to more or less the same steps. The 3-step process is a generalization of the other process types, while the 7-step process breaks down the sub-steps in the others.

In the 6-step process, marketing and reflecting refer to bringing what you’ve written in front of your audience and assessing the feedback to understand what you could have done better.

The 7-step writing process here is used mostly in schools where teachers guide the children by showing them how to write by planning and drafting a model piece in front of the class. Then they can incorporate the input of the children with a shared piece, which can then be evaluated, revised and edited (with the help of the teacher) before publishing.

The 5 Step Writing Process

For the sake of keeping it simple and effective, we’ll stick to a 5-step writing process that anyone can refer to and use for better results.

(Video) 5 Steps of the Writing Process

Step 1: Prewriting

Many tend to overlook this step completely.

They jump right into writing without taking the time to plan and organize their thoughts. And they end up with a low-quality piece that took a lot more time than they hoped.

Taking time to complete this step is important because it helps with gathering and preparing everything you need for the subsequent writing steps.

In this stage, spend time brainstorming and conducting research to understand your topic better and gather relevant information.

Rely on authoritative sources from experts in the subject area and list them down so you can refer to them when writing your piece later to increase its credibility.

It’s also a best practice to identify your target audience. Understanding your target reader and what they want well will help you narrow down your focus.

Some prewriting strategies you can use here are,

(Video) What Writers Do: A 5-Step Writing Process

  • Freewriting is writing freely without regarding quality or correctness (grammar, spellings, punctuation). The purpose is to get what’s in your head on to paper or screen without stopping. You can consider this as a warmup exercise.
  • Clustering is also known as mind mapping, diagramming, bubbling, etc. and is a brainstorming method. This method uses visualization to capture your thoughts. Place your topic in the center and write down related ideas, terms or words that come into your mind around it connected by lines. You can delve further into these subtopics by breaking them down as well.
  • Outlining helps with neatly organizing what you have already found out through research and brainstorming. It’ll help fish out the important points that will help you tell your story, from the jumble of ideas you have gathered. And it actually makes drafting a much easier task.

Step 2: Drafting

Now that you have researched the topic and have an outline ready, apply them to create a rough draft. Remember that this is only the first draft, meaning it will be revised and edited in the later steps.

It’s important that you only focus on getting the ideas roughly into sentences without worrying too much about spelling, grammar or vocabulary here.

If you spend time perfecting every sentence and paragraph that you write in the drafting stage, you’ll be more stressed and the quality of the final outcome will be lower.

Instead, work through the outline you’ve prepared earlier as you write. Write complete sentences and paragraphs, and almost as in freewriting don’t stop yourself to look back and edit.

However, try moderately to use proper grammar and put together words in a way that makes sense when you revise.

By the end of this step, you should have written everything you needed to say about the topic.

Step 3: Revising

This is a critical part of the writing process. It’s during this phase that you will revisit the draft and improve it by modifying and rearranging the content. To make it more appealing to the target audience you can add, rewrite or delete sentences or paragraphs.

(Video) The Writing Process

And as you reread your draft, you will detect areas that need to be improved to reinforce your argument better. It may require you to do a little more thinking, and even in some cases more research, to find the information you need to logically prove your point.

You don’t have to do this step alone. Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes can help provide new insight that you might have missed; you can ask for help from your colleagues or peers during this stage.

You can revise your draft as many times as you want. However, it’s better to wait at least a few hours if not a day to revise you draft again after the first attempt.

Step 4: Editing

Editing requires you to fix grammar mistakes, spelling or punctuation errors, repetition, and style. This is why you should wait to edit until you are done with revising your piece; for there’s no point in editing something you will later delete or rewrite.

You can make this another chance to ensure that your article delivers what your title promises. It’s better to get someone else to read your piece in this step as well, for they may find errors that you might have gotten too tired to notice after sifting through it for dozens of times.

Step 5: Publishing

Then comes sharing your piece with your audience.

If you are adding it to a website or blog you may have to optimize it for SEO purposes and add visuals. In which case you may also have to consider marketing your piece, which you can do through social media, email newsletters, etc.

(Video) The 5 Step Creative Writing Process!

Any Tips or Advice?

You may have already developed your own signature writing process, maybe with a few additional steps to what we have covered here. We’d love to hear how you go about it, or any other tips that our readers may find useful.

Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.


The Essential 5-Step Writing Process for All Writers? ›

The general steps are: discovery\investigation, prewriting, drafting, revising, and editing.

What are the 5 steps of writing process? ›

The general steps are: discovery\investigation, prewriting, drafting, revising, and editing.

What are the 5 essentials of writing? ›

The book fully explains—and links—the five essentials of good writing:
  • punctuation,
  • grammar,
  • fact-checking,
  • style, and.
  • voice.

What makes the 5 stages of writing process important? ›

It will help you write better and faster. By breaking down the task into manageable steps, you can do away with the struggling and procrastinating. Since you will be following individual steps, you can focus on each better, which in turn will be reflected in the quality of the final copy.

What are the 5 prewriting strategies? ›

We often call these prewriting strategies “brainstorming techniques.” Five useful strategies are listing, clustering, freewriting, looping, and asking the six journalists' questions. These strategies help you with both your invention and organization of ideas, and they can aid you in developing topics for your writing.

What are the 5 stages of writing process with PDF? ›

Prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, and finishing and publishing are steps in the writing process.

What is the process of writing? ›

Writing is a process that can be divided into three stages: Pre-writing, drafting and the final revising stage which includes editing and proofreading. In the first stage you research your topic and make preparatory work before you enter the drafting stage.

What are the 5 dimensions of writing? ›

Through the analysis, they found five key dimensions of persuasive writing: rhetoric, craftsmanship, authenticity, reflexivity, and imagination.

What are the 5 Rs of writing? ›

Gutkind defines the essential elements of creative nonfiction as five “R's”: real l ife, reflection, research, reading, and (w)riting.

What are the 5 C's of writing style? ›

To introduce you to this world of academic writing, in this chapter I suggest that you should focus on five hierarchical characteristics of good writing, or the “5 Cs” of good academic writing, which include Clarity, Cogency, Conventionality, Completeness, and Concision.

What is an important step in the writing process? ›

"Brainstorming" is one of the most important steps in the writing process which you should never skip. This well-written and informative site introduces you to thirteen helpful and applicable techniques.

Why are the steps of the writing process important? ›

It is important for a writer to work through each of the steps in order to ensure that he has produced a polished, complete piece. The writing process is not always linear. A writer may move back and forth between steps as needed.

What is the important process writing? ›

A writing process or method includes the following stages: planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing, and publishing. The prewriting stage is the most critical stage of the writing process.

What are the five elements of effective writing list down and explain 5 points? ›

However, there are certain qualities that most examples of good writing share. The following is a brief description of five qualities of good writing: focus, development, unity, coherence, and correctness. The qualities described here are especially important for academic and expository writing.

What are the pre writing process? ›

Prewriting is the planning process, which consists of determining your purpose and audience, narrowing your topic and creating a framework for your documentation.

What are basic prewriting skills? ›

The skills involved in learning to write are called prewriting skills. These include the sensorimotor skills that contribute to a child holding and using a pencil, and the ability to draw, copy, and colour. The ideas in this handout have primarily been developed for children aged 4 years and older.

What are the 4 types of writing process? ›

Writing is a process that involves at least four distinct steps: prewriting, drafting, revising, and editing.

What are the 5 steps of the writing process for 3rd grade? ›

Most children are typically taught a five-step writing process. These steps are: planning (also called prewriting), drafting, revising, editing, and publishing.

What are the 7 stages of writing? ›

The writing process, according to the EEF's ​'Improving Literacy In Key Stage 2' guidance report, can be broken down into 7 stages: Planning, Drafting, Sharing, Evaluating,Revising, Editing and Publishing.

What are the 6 steps in writing process and definition? ›

​​You've probably heard the saying “good writing is rewriting.” It means good writing requires coming up with ideas, reviewing and organizing them, putting them into a cohesive written work, revisiting your work, editing it, and revising it to make your words stronger. These steps are known as the writing process.

What are the 6 parts of the writing process? ›

  • What Is the Writing Process? ...
  • The 6 Stages of the Writing Process. ...
  • Prewriting. ...
  • Planning. ...
  • Drafting. ...
  • Revising. ...
  • Editing. ...
  • Publishing.
Aug 23, 2021

When writing do you write five or 5? ›

Writing Small and Large Numbers

A simple rule for using numbers in writing is that small numbers ranging from one to ten (or one to nine, depending on the style guide) should generally be spelled out. Larger numbers (i.e., above ten) are written as numerals.

What are the 5 dimensions of communication? ›

These levels of communication are verbal, physical, auditory, emotional, and energetic.

What are the 5 dimensions of a person? ›

There are five main aspects of personal health: physical, emotional, social, spiritual, and intellectual. In order to be considered "well," it is imperative for none of these areas to be neglected.

What is 5 finger writing? ›

Students write in each finger to create a five finger retell / summary of their story . The parts they will include are setting, characters, problem, beginning-middle-end, and solution.

What are the ABCs of writing? ›

Bringing It All Together. The ABCs of effective and clear communication are accuracy, brevity, and clarity. When you focus on these three elements, you'll be able to emphasize one specific message at a time, making it easier to understand and elicit a clear response.

What is the 5 C framework context? ›

5C Analysis is a marketing framework to analyze the environment in which a company operates. It can provide insight into the key drivers of success, as well as the risk exposure to various environmental factors. The 5Cs are Company, Collaborators, Customers, Competitors, and Context.

What is the most important element of the writing process? ›

The writing process consists of different stages: prewriting, drafting, revising, and editing. Prewriting is the most important of these steps. Prewriting is the "generating ideas" part of the writing process when the student works to determine the topic and the position or point-of-view for a target audience.

What is the first major step of the writing process? ›

1. Prewriting – in this stage, you plan what you are going to write. You choose your topic, identify your audience and purpose, brainstorm ideas, and organize your information.

What is structure of writing? ›

Nevertheless, writing usually follows the same overall structure: introduction, main body and conclusion. The introduction outlines the main direction the writing will take and gives any necessary background information and context. In the main body each point is presented, explored and developed.

What are the 5 essential elements of a paragraph? ›

A good paragraph has five basic elements: a topic, a topic sentence, supporting sentences, unity and coherence.

What are the five elements of five? ›

All matter is composed of five basic elements — panchamahabhutas — which inhere the properties of earth (pritvi), water (jala), fire (tejas), wind (vayu) and space (akasha).

What are the 5 qualities of a good essay? ›

  • FOCUS. An essay should have a single clear central idea. ...
  • DEVELOPMENT. Each paragraph should support or expand the central idea of the paper. ...
  • UNITY. Every paragraph in an essay should be related to the main idea. ...
  • COHERENCE. An essay or paper should be organized logically, flow smoothly, and "stick" together. ...

What are the three main guidelines for writing? ›

The Three-Step Writing Process: Plan, Draft, Revise!
  • Step 1: Planning. Avoid writing without thinking about what you are trying to do. ...
  • Step 2: Drafting. Write the first draft quickly to capture the general idea of the points you are trying to get across. ...
  • Step 3: Revising.

How do you plan a writing strategy? ›

Early planning
  1. carefully read and think about the assignment or task, and its purpose.
  2. brainstorm lists of key words and topics, to give direction to your reading and research.
  3. draw mindmaps, diagrams and flowcharts.
  4. discuss your ideas with someone else.
  5. list all the readings you could use.
Oct 26, 2022

What are the stages of report writing? ›

The following stages are involved in writing a report: ▪ planning your work; ▪ collecting your information; ▪ organising and structuring your information; ▪ writing the first draft; ▪ checking and re-drafting.

What are the basic strokes in writing? ›

Four basic lines, or strokes, are used to form all manuscript letters and numerals— vertical, horizontal, circle, and diagonal. For grades 2–5, four basic strokes are used to form all cursive letters and numerals. These four strokes are undercurve, downcurve, overcurve, and diagonal.

What are the most common prewriting strategies? ›

The 5 most popular and successful prewriting strategies are:
  • Brainstorming. You can use brainstorming alone or with your team. ...
  • Clustering, or mind-mapping. Clustering is another form of brainstorming that allows writers to map the concepts they have in mind to a bigger picture. ...
  • Freewriting. ...
  • Outlining. ...
  • Looping.
Dec 9, 2022

What are the 7 essential steps for writing? ›

The writing process, according to the EEF's ​'Improving Literacy In Key Stage 2' guidance report, can be broken down into 7 stages: Planning, Drafting, Sharing, Evaluating,Revising, Editing and Publishing.

What is the 7 step writing process? ›

A writing process or method includes the following stages: planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing, and publishing.

What is the most important step in the writing process? ›

"Brainstorming" is one of the most important steps in the writing process which you should never skip. This well-written and informative site introduces you to thirteen helpful and applicable techniques.

What are the 4 stages of writing development? ›

There are four stages that kids go through when learning to write: preliterate, emergent, transitional, and fluent.

What are the 6 steps of the writing process? ›

  • Why You Should Know the Stages of the Writing Process.
  • Stage 1 – Prewriting.
  • Stage 2 – Planning.
  • Stage 3 – Drafting.
  • Stage 4 – Revising.
  • Stage 5 – Editing.
  • Stage 6 – Publishing.
  • Takeaway.
Jun 11, 2020

What are the six 6 basic steps in writing a story? ›

  • Step 1: Determine Your Setting. ...
  • Step 2: Make Memorable Characters. ...
  • Step 3: Understand the 2 Types of Conflict. ...
  • Step 4: Give Your Plot a Twist. ...
  • Step 5: Recreate Natural Dialogue. ...
  • Step 6: Articulate Voice Through Point of View. ...
  • Step 1: Determine Your Setting. ...
  • Step 2: Make Memorable Characters.
Sep 8, 2021

What are the 8 steps of writing? ›

8 steps to writing your first draft
  • Outline your core topic. ...
  • Identify your audience. ...
  • Plan with pre-writing. ...
  • Make a mess and clean it up in later. ...
  • Avoid adding minute details. ...
  • Start writing without engaging your inner critic. ...
  • Don't stop to do more research. ...
  • Seek appropriate feedback.
Jan 27, 2020

What are the 9 steps of the writing process? ›

Read the full series:
  • Brainstorming & Research.
  • The Outline.
  • The First Draft.
  • Simmering Periods.
  • The Second Draft.
  • Revisions.
  • Beta Readers & Final Revisions.
  • Tweaking & Polishing.
Sep 1, 2014

What are the 10 steps of the writing process? ›

Thinking of Writing as Process
  • Understand Your Assignment. Before you start writing, make sure you understand the assignment. ...
  • Determine Your Purpose. ...
  • Generate Ideas. ...
  • Organize Your Ideas. ...
  • Create a Thesis. ...
  • Drafting. ...
  • Cool Off. ...
  • Revise.

What step should a writer start first? ›

Start writing and stick to a routine.

Research, outlining, and idea development are all critical steps to writing your first book, but there may come a time when preparation becomes procrastination. At a certain point, it's time to begin writing your rough draft.

What is the most important step in writing an essay? ›

Your essay needs a thesis statement

Of these, the most important by far is your thesis, or the crux of what your essay is about. Your thesis, encapsulated in your thesis statement, is the central point you're trying to make.

What are the stages in type writing? ›

The Stages of Writing
  • planning.
  • drafting.
  • revising.
  • editing.
  • proofreading.
  • presenting.

What is Stage 4 called in writing? ›

Transitional Stages

The fourth stage is also the stage that involves writing letters, but not spacing the letters into words separate from other words. This could also be called an early words stage.

What is level 4 writing? ›

Children working at level 4 begin to use paragraphs and correctly-punctuated writing for a range of different purposes. They choose interesting words for their writing, and begin to write more complex sentences.


1. The 5 Steps of Writing
(Jeanette Smith)
3. My 5-Step Writing Process (Writing First Draft)
(No Time Writer)
4. 5 Step Writing Process
(Joan Weber)
5. The 5-Step Writing Process by Professor Tramontana
(Richard Tramontana)
6. The Writing Process: A Step by Step Guide to Academic Writing
(Tech meets Rhet: English Composition Resources)
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