Thought it might be a good idea to restart with some of these articles. Hopefully they might be useful. :.)
The first idea I had was “how to write like a writer”. At first glance, this phrase might seem a bit of a redundancy. Isn’t the definition of a writer ‘one who writes’? Well, perhaps. But we’re not referring to term papers and grocery lists. We’re speaking about career writers. Story-tellers. The ones whose novels and shorts keep you pinned to the edge of your seat. You know the ones. Their words fly off the page, enveloping you in a world you’ve never even dreamt of.
Such writers are gifted, certainly. But there are some tricks you can use to get one step closer to that magical flying-off-the-page stage. Here are the first few thoughts which come to mind. Some are commonly known. Others, not so much. Feel free to add your own.
- Be excited. If you are not excited, enthralled, and entranced by your own work, it’s unlikely anyone else will be.
- That said, if you are not excited, enthralled, and entranced by your work, scrap it (or shelve it) and move on. There are always a million ideas. Pick a different one, and run with it.
- In the words of a more recent One Direction music video, “First, you have to destroy your inhibitions. You first destroy, then, you create.” Don’t waste valuable writing time worrying about what the critics will think, what your friends will think, your parents will think, your neighbour, for sister’s cat. Write for yourself. Write the most marvelous, brilliant thing you can. Throw everything you have into it: your heart, your soul, your body, your mind, and some of the sugar from that treacle tart you had for dinner. The results will follow. But, first, you must destroy all inhibitions. Write freely.
- Make it flow. Don’t jump from thought to thought without proper transitions. Write the boring bits. You can cut them out/down later. Like punctuation, every good story needs a few pauses in the action. Otherwise, you might fatigue your reader
- That said, play with your reader. Tease them, taunt them, love them, cherish them. I love good plot twists, ones which build up one way only to twist at the climax (think: Dan Brown’s THE LOST SYMBOL). You have the power to do this, to build up your story and then twist in 180 degrees. Take advantage of this power.
- Don’t write to get published. Your writing is more likely to be awkward and forced if you do. This will sacrifice both flow and storyline. Write for yourself, because you want to, you need to, and you love it. It will show.
- On the same line, write what you know. Doesn’t have to be literal; feelings are just as good. If you’ve had the misfortune to feel intense jealousy, betrayal, rage, or grief, you’ve encountered versatile feelings easily transferrable to a myriad of situations. Tap into that emotion and write. Everything will come to life.
- Don’t ‘play it safe’. Take risks! Try different strategies. The beauty with writing is it’s very easy to change, and you can have as many drafts as you like.
There are a few pointers to get you started. More to come.
Happy writing! :.)