Writing is one of the things we learn in childhood. When we are adults, we use writing daily and even do not notice that it requires some efforts. But when writing becomes a part of our job, or when writing transforms into our hobby, we start to notice that it is not as easy as we thought. You need to be attentive, you need to be well-educated, you need to be ready for unexpected thoughts, you need to stick to the idea all the time, you need to double check… You need so many things to make your writing perfect that sometimes you start to think you’d better do something else.
We all can write but only some of us become professional writers. Why does it happen? What influences the way a person writes? Is it possible to boost your writing skills and turn into a writer? In fact, writing is the thing which can be mastered. It is not a quick process, still, you can achieve more if you work hard upon your writing skills. Develop your creativity, find inspiration in your surroundings, learn new spheres of life – these are the basics for a person who wants to create his own worlds. Here are 5 steps which will help you turn from amateur into a professional writer.
Step 1. Read more.
There is only one thing that can prepare you for writing. It is reading. The more your read, the more get. We talk not only about new ideas, creativity, vision of the world, a perception of different writers, we also talk about vocabulary and styles different authors use. When you read, you can understand what style suits you more, what vocabulary is more effective, and how you should create images to make people believe you. For a writer, reading is a must, especially reading of fiction.
Analyze what you read. Do not stop only on the key idea of novel or story. Dig deeper. For example, compare styles of different authors. How did Hemingway write and how did Charlotte Brontë write? Do they have something in common or are they absolutely different? How Maugham did create his images? Why are verbs stronger than adjectives? Ask more questions to yourself and find answers.
Step 2. Devote yourself to writing.
If you want to write, you need to devote yourself to writing at least 10 minutes every day. Of course, 10 minutes is not enough to become a professional writer. You need to work more to be able to create a piece of writing that really works. 10 minutes is enough to write a sentence. But you need to time to improve it and to find some stronger words and to find a proper tone. Still, if you do not have a lot of time, use every free minute. It is always better to write 10 minutes per day or not to write at all.
Make writing your habit. Write when you are having a lunch, write when you are watching a movie, write when you want to have a rest. Eventually, you will find that writing is not a not thing you make yourself do, it is a thing you that you cannot live without.
Step 3. Write down your favorite abstracts.
Today we all use our laptops for writing. We no longer need a pen and a piece of paper to create a masterpiece. However, writing by hand brings more benefits than typing, especially when you just start a career of a writer and still don’t have your own style. This step is a combination of the first step (reading) and the second step (writing). When you read and find some abstracts that impress you, or some abstracts that are powerful enough to make you want to write like that, or some abstracts that are perfect stylistically, just write them down by a hand.
This is a small psychological trick. Our brain still works according to the pattern we’ve created when we were small kids. When you use your hand to write something, you remember that. Typing is still a new ability so you do not catch style of the author when you just retype something.
Step 4. Work with your draft.
Even if you think that your piece of writing is genius, do not show it someone else until you check it one more time. And once more. And once more. Love from the first sight is not what works with writing. You can miss some mistakes or do not notice that you have lost an idea. Editing is important as a process of writing itself. Moreover, you need to be ready to criticize your writing. If you have the slightest doubts that your work is perfect, check it. If you know that you can do more to improve it, do that. No one will hurry you up. Each your work is only a draft, and you need to make it perfect by all means.
Step 5. Cut every third word.
We all know that six-word story “For sale: baby shoes, never worn”. A professional writer is not the one who writes a lot, but the one who can create a story with several sentences or even words. Remember that each piece of writing can be shorter. And it must be shorter. Mark Twain told that you can cut every third word from your writing, and that is true. Just look through your paper. Think of the words you use. Some of them are strong, others are weak. Delete weak words, find some new combinations for weak phrases, and make your text shorter.
Christine Allen is young writer and blogger. She believes that you can get everything that you want. You just have to be sure in what you really want and be patient. You can follow her on Facebook and Google+.
There’s something peculiarly soothing in writing on a paper. It seems that my brain starts to produce thoughts in a different way. No hurries, no worries. I strongly believe that only self-dedication to the process is able to unlock our creative voice and let our stream of consciousness flow. There are no limits! The possibility to dive into the ocean of stylistic means and devices gives me a stimulus to write day and night. Thank you Christine! Keep on writing!
Thanks for your feedback, Mia. Indeed, writing process brings the greatest pleasure. And the more you write, the more you develop as a writer!
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Great stuff to share. Also for me personally i have learnt a chunk of information regarding developing your own writing skills which will help you in all kinds of writing. Either you write a blog or a technical writing, nothing could be more challenging as long as you find these advices on your finger tips.
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I am just inspired to become a better writer. You have pointed out perfect skills that I need to develop. I am thirsty for knowledge on how to write better and to gain from the same. I have just read on the skills and they are just refining my way. Thanks for the same.
I learnt a lot of writing tips from you guys. I would want to better my skills every day and this post just added some new tips that would help me a lot. Thanks for the useful post.