I feel I should start off with a disclaimer – this isn’t about the really mediocre Adam Sandler film from a few years back.
Ha, what’s that you say…?
Which mediocre Adam Sandler film?!
You joker, you!
I mean the one that’s actually called ‘Click‘, of course.
This is what I mean by ‘the click’…
When I was at first school, circa mid-late 90s, there was a kid I used to sit near who never really said anything.
Looking back now, I guess he was super-shy.
If you posed him with a question, he’d simply write his answer on his notepad and show it to you.
Whenever I tried to ask him anything, all he seemed to do was draw a picture of a stick man.
This confused me.
I wanted to borrow a rubber once. He scrawled something down, and tilted his notepad to show me.
It was a picture of a stick man.
In the end I went with the cavalier attitude of helping myself to the rubber. He never told me off, so I assumed all was fine.
One day, not long after he’d drawn one of his stick men, his notepad fell onto the floor and I picked it up.
As I handed it to him I saw that the word ‘OK’ was written on it. For a minute I was perplexed – how had a drawing of a stick man turned into the word OK?
AND THEN I REALISED!
I was always looking at his notepad sideways on!
He was writing the word ‘OK’!
It was just that, due to the way he wrote it and the angle I viewed it from (kinda sideways on), it looked like a stick man!
That was it. That was the ‘click’ moment. Something clicked for me that I’d been trying to understand for ages. Boy, did my eight year old self feel a fool for not working it out sooner.
I feel that we should translate this to writing. When you’re putting together text for an audience to read, it needs to flow. Nothing turns a reader off more than when they snag on a word or a sentence.
I have no authority on the subject…but I reckon that, if a reader snags more than three/four times while reading something, they’ll give up unless it’s important.
Before you post or share anything, you need to make sure it clicks. You need to review what you’ve written and keep on editing until it flows.
Edit it until it reads so smoothly that it feels as if the reader doesn’t even need to concentrate to read it.
Because you want everyone to read your content. You don’t want 70% to think you mean ‘OK’, and the other 30% to think you mean ‘stick man’.
As they say, writing is re-writing. If it doesn’t click, it doesn’t read well.
Next time you’re in front of that Word document, keep going until you CLICK.