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VOF and Journaling: Helpful Hints Writing Guide

This is intended to provide some helpful suggestions that may be of benefit to those writing the VOF assignments, but is also applicable to anyone wanting to share with a broad audience through writing and journal entries. It is based on my experience participating in the assignments last year, and from my involvement with the WP online community. It is by no means definitive or comprehensive, but I do hope it is helpful.

I am accustomed to writing concise, well-crafted, and descriptive reports. This was echoed in my VOF assignments last year, as well as in my journal entries. I was very conscientious of syntax, form, and clarity while expressing vision, action, and hope.  I wrote with the thought of needing to be a good writer with a great story, emphasis on the writing part.  In fact, this is not necessarily the case. Although I still believe clear, concise, decent writing has import, I came to realize that clear vision, action plan, and personal story is of greater benefit for this phase of WP’s VOF assignments. The following elements would be beneficial in the writing:

-Expression of ambition, spirit, and hope
-A story of overcoming adversity, or attempt thereof
-Focus on singular idea
-Clarity of ideas, passion, and/or vision
-Feasibility of your project/idea/action
-Plan of action, and/or example of action
-Examples of completed or in-process projects/campaigns
-Exemplifying World Pulse as a whole, or a component thereof, while remaining true to self.

With those elements in mind, it may be that one comprehensive essay, story, or journal entry could be broken down into a number of different essays. Keeping a journal entry concise is beneficial for these reasons:

-It increases the probability of reaching a wider audience (ie: most people will naturally gravitate or read a shorter piece than a longer one).
-You will have a variety of journal entries in place of the one, longer entry. It is true that some stories or entries warrant more words. But I have seen a number of entries that very well could be split into at least a few, so I would consider each entry carefully.
-More attention can be given to each important idea within the original, larger essay.

It may also be of benefit to some journal entries or essays to ask specific questions or present an idea that spurs responses. In this matter, you may draw more replies or spark new ideas. At the very least you may broaden your community.

Above all, know that being true to yourself, with the knowledge that you will meet acceptance here in this community, will bring brilliance to whatever you write. And that light, dear sisters, will shine for all to see.

With Peace and Hope,
aka Cali gal Michelle


Zoepiliafas's picture

Thank you

Thank you for posting! These are very helpful guidelines for the applicants!

Zoe Piliafas

Voices of Our Future Community Manager
World Pulse

Zoe- I am grateful this has been helpful to many, and so thrilled to be a part of this exciting time!

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


Sharontina's picture


Thanks dear,

i shall keep this in mind. This is really helpful..

Love and peace.

Merlin Sharontina

surfgirl-CA's picture


Michelle- thx- it's a useful guide. I had written some similar to an applicant, becz most of us have learned to write academic style - analytically etc. What WP is looking for is what you have highlighted here in clear fashion. It shld make it much more clear to the applicants & give them focus as they craft their posts. best//Tina

surfgirl-CA --
When we come from the willingness to love, not fear, we will see the best and highest materialize in our world.
Quand nous venons à partir de la volonté à l'amour, pas la peur, nous allons voir le meilleur et le plus élevé se matérialise

libudsuroy's picture

Hi, Michelle, Even a writing

Hi, Michelle,
Even a writing crone like me has much to learn from your guidelines. I need to break out from old habits and learn new ones. Also as a reader, your tips can also be the lens with which I can appreciate more fully the overwhelming number of stories that has nourished my days in the past weeks.

libudsuroy/Lina Sagaral Reyes
Mindanao, The Philippines

''Every Day is a Journey and the Journey itself is Home.'' (Matsuo Basho)

libudsuroy- I am humbled by your kind words. I was hoping to help a few people who had asked, and am thrilled so many more have found benefit. I can learn from you, too!

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


Woman of voice's picture


Thanks sister

Mukut's picture

Thank you Michele

Thank you for these extremely helpful tips. Would incorporate these points in my posts.


Mukut Ray

Tina J's picture

Thank you Michele

Thank you very much for these helpful hints. While most of us might know this-I for one, truly appreciated this. It reminded me of the merits involved in good writing.

Thanks again!

Vweta's picture

Thank you somuch for sharing

Thank you somuch for sharing this! This would come in very handy during and after the application process.

Our Voices make the WORLD PULSate...

fozia yasin's picture


These are very useful tips Michelle and when mastered will add life to our writing... I am going
practicing right away. thank you

loretta's picture


I understand your point and your tips are appreciated. Sometimes a story becomes a little bit longer, not intentionally or dramatically, but most facts are at the beginning of the story and therefore can't rush the conclusion.

But all in all POINT well taken and hope to put it to good use.

Keep in touch.


A successful woman is one who can build a firm foundation with the bricks others throw at her. Author Unkown.

Cali gal Michelle's picture

Loretta- Yes, sometimes

Loretta- Yes, sometimes stories are longer because much needs to be said. Not to be rushed, surely. I have learned that much of the time what is being conveyed could be said in a more concise way without sacrificing meaning. However, that is not a universal truth, and surely there is a place for extended writings. I am not a professional writer, and I only hope lessons I learned will help others avoid writers' frustration, and maybe even enhance their efforts.

I appreciate your response. Thank you and all the best!

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


Felevyn's picture


Thanks for the helpful guide

byamungu bahati pascal's picture

Grand Merci

Je ne sais pas comment te remercier pour ce bon guide dont tu vient de nous faire part. Vraiment merci beacoup.


radiocami's picture

Thank you!!

This is so helpful, thank you so much for taking the time to share this and help us on our quest.
Much peace and love to you!

valerie camila rhodes

seunaboy's picture


thanks for being unselfish about this



pelamutunzi's picture

from the heart

thanx it feels great to just write from the heart without too much focus on grammer etc

we may be powerless to stop an injustice but let there never be a time we fail to protest.

Tina Young's picture

Very Helpful Hints

Thanks a million. I actually took down notes as I read.

kirthijay's picture

Thank you SO much for

Thank you SO much for sharing!

Aminah's picture

very helpful indeed

My academic writing style is so precise that it sometimes border on the side of boredom :)
And I have tried my best to deviate from this path when writing here. And it was harder than could be imagined.

And I totally agree with your point about the length. Sometimes we repeat ourselves too much without really knowing that we are being repetitious. Limiting our words to a set number helps us be more precise with what we want to say.

And yes one thing that I sometimes forget about - but is very important is leaving something for reader to follow up with. After all we want interactivity. and interactivity is the strength of web 2.0.
So it is very important to leave something that readers can relate to can respond to. And now I realize I should have thought about that before I wrote my last two assignments.

Thanks for this refresher.



Aminah- Thanks for your kind reply. Please do not regret anything you have submitted so far. I am not a writer, per se, so don't take the hints as the only way to write. This is how one learns; to act, reflect, listen, and act again, this time utilizing what we have learned. In this way we continue to grow. There is no 'bad' if one is being their best self.

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


Thanks to all for your kind replies. Please share with others as you wish. All the best to everyone during this exciting time at WP!

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


ola.mahadi's picture

thank you

Thanks for the advice and sharing the experiance i believe i should write from my heat then and be myself

It is never too late to try make your way to your dream and left up your expectation.
Sudanes Women Building Peace

Gabisflanis's picture

My Gratitude!

For sharing this. Not only it helps to me to be more aware of what and how-to-write my articles, but also, the only sense of "sharing" makes me feel even more comfortable and welcomed to the community, feeling that you guys expect the best from us. Thank you for giving us a hand through the process.


Precious M's picture

I have learnt much!

Dear Michelle,

Your article has empowered me with so much knowledge. I love what you say about focus and about length. Keeping it short and simple definitely attracts more readers. I also enjoy the idea of staying true to ourselves. I could go on and on...

Thanks for sharing!

Best regards,

My pen speaks

gaok's picture

very helpful

Thank you for the hints. It means a lot to some of us
Who don't have much writing skills.


For sure, I should first of all thank a lady by name who is also a member on this online community. Jensine introduced me to this on line after connecting with her on a different website. I would not have known that such a community is there. I had really wished to have such in my life but I thank God it came just at the right time when I needed it most.
I was very lucky to have connected to her just some hours before the close of the stated time for joining. Oh!! I did not waste time anymore on learning about this, straight away I joined the community, I am now happy that what has been putting me down pondering how to have women problems aired is now at my finger tips. I have learned quite a lot and gathered many stories on women’s voices. I have taken it upon my self to spread the community to be known by if possible every woman in my community to start with and eventually the entire country Kenya and last but not least worldwide.
I have connected it to them and still doing so.
As a leader of a women telecentre in my community, I have been having receiving cries from the women I lead which have been so pathetic and demanding. I have not been having anywhere to air them. Now I am happy that all their worries will be told openly here on world pulse. My personal vision for the future “A WORLD WHERE WOMEN ARE VALUED” all the posted stories are aiming at having some solutions to the problems and hand and indeed by so doing, we shall end up with a world where women are valued. This is a great opportunity for me too, world pulse is a place for me to be as a woman who wants my voice to be heard and that of my fellow women

Well done world pulse

Maonah's picture

A hand to hang on

Dea Michelle Foxx Meloche,

I just love your wonderful and large heart. i sincerely appreciate meeting you on this platform and i believe we will all join hands together to reach the sky and i can always count on you to lift us up.

Thanks once again for the hints to make us better persons.

Sophie's picture

Asante (thank you)

Those are useful tips, thanks for sharing this, much appreciated

Sophie Ngugi
Child of the Universe

I love the support, this confirms our never ending support women offer each other in all spheres of life.
this is us, this is why we still live despte the effort to cut us off at the glass ceiling, just below the opportunity damn course! Its not a competition rather a companionship on world pulse. we will say connected even after we win or lose the application. not all of us can be taken on for sure. we must be courageous as suggested by one of us the applicants.
Thanks for the in sight.


Cali gal Michelle's picture

I love your line, "not a

I love your line, "not a competition rather a companionship" ! How true, and I love it! Thank you! Taking part in this last year provided me with a lifetime of friendship, and for that every bit of effort, even though I was not a finalist, was worth it!

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


tolulopeola2003's picture


Thanks for the hint.


passy's picture

Thanks very much

Thanks very much Michelle, this is very helpful.

otahelp's picture

learning to write

I really want to be able to write well and be appreciated for my work. when i am writing, i write as it comes to me, so i dont know if i have any style but thank you Michelle, i will try and keep you advice and suggestion in mind next time and see i can get it right.

thank you once again

Our Lady of Perpetual Help Initiative
Lets keep the light shining

Monica09's picture

Thank you!

Dear Michelle,

Thank you for these wonderful guidelines! Will certainly help in my future assignments.


I allow myself to suggest this reading: How to Write More Successful Blog Posts (by Dave Kerpen) at

Cali gal Michelle's picture

Thank you!

Thank you!

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


Y's picture

Please feel free to tell me

Please feel free to tell me when I need to tone it down. My passion has been held in for so many years, I'm bursting at my seams to share it all with the world.


...And many are listening! Burst forth and bloom! The world needs you.

Let us Hope together-
aka: Cali gal


Y's picture

And you!

And you!


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