How to Develop your Writing Skills: A Guide to Becoming a Better Writer
Although every piece of art is food for the soul in its own magical way, I find writing to be a very challenging branch when it comes to two important aspects – perceiving it and creating it. A painting is something you can see, music is something you can hear, but text is something that needs to be developed in your mind while you’re reading.
As a writer, you need to make sure that those mental images that are evoked in a reader’s mind while they are reading your work are interesting, to say the least. It sounds really difficult, because it is, but it is not impossible to learn. The fact that you’re not a particularly gifted singer doesn’t mean that you can’t develop a lovely singing voice if you invest your efforts that way. That goes the same for being a good writer.
In order to become a good writer, you need to practice and be very determined about it. You should treat it as if it were any other job and write every single day. I know that creativity isn’t an inexhaustible source, and it can be very challenging for a writer to keep their focus and transfer it onto a blank piece of paper or screen in front of them, but that’s exactly what you need to do.
Create a Productive Ritual:
Inspiration can be found even in the smallest things around you – you just need to awaken that curiosity in you and allow it to take you places. You probably consider it to be a bit contradictory to have a working schedule and daydream at the same time, but you need to harmonize these two things in order to create a piece with a beginning and an end.
That is why you need to create a sort of office, a comfortable place in your home (or in a mountain cottage, wherever) where you’re comfortable, undisturbed, and focused, so you can let your mind work.
Have a Notepad with You at All Times:
Get a little notepad, or a smartphone for that matter, whichever you find more suitable. When your creativity starts boiling and you start working on a piece, your mind will keep a part of it dedicated to your work, so you will get various ideas all the time, whether you’re trying to come up with something, or you’re waiting in line at the grocery store.
I made that same mistake of being absolutely certain that I’ll remember something and that I don’t really need to write it down (being a genius and all) and a thought – I can’t really remember if was truly brilliant or not – simply vanished. Therefore, write down everything that pops up in your mind, no matter if you consider it silly or not, because you’ll find its purpose in time.
Break Your Fears and Just Write:
When you’re in a rut, or to use a more popular term, when faced with the notorious writer’s block, caused by lack of inspiration or because you just realized how dumb everything you wrote is (we all go through this, perhaps because we’re a bit theatrical as a group) you need to resist all your instincts that tell you to burn all your work in a huge fire and do the very opposite – write.
Even if it’s a complete waste of paper and even if it doesn’t make any sense – write. That’s the only way to get back on the right track while wasting minimal amounts of time. And only after you get sick of the fact that you’re not capable of writing anything with a single bit of sense can you stop, but only to find ways to upgrade your skills.
Isolate Yourself from Distractions:
It’s very important that you protect yourself from all disturbances. This may be something that your friends and family will find difficult to accept, but it’s quite important for your career to stay determined and focused – and the only way to do that is through isolation. I’m not suggesting that you move and start living in the middle of a forest or a desert (which actually isn’t a bad idea at all), but be very specific about your work hours – it will be easier for you and everyone around you if you stay persistent about this.
Plan Ahead and Create Constructions:
It’s not impossible, but it is very difficult to write a valuable piece without planning it ahead and doing so in fine detail. In order to be capable of creating a story that’s clear and concise, you yourself need to know parts of that story so you don’t lose track along the way. When you create an outline, have in mind that it can be subjected to changes, if you feel the need for them as your story envelops.
It is hard and it doesn’t get easier with every new piece. I know all of this sounds like a torture and you’re probably wondering whether it’s worth the trouble at all, but it really is. After you complete your first story or a book and realize your mind is capable of creating a valuable piece of art, you’ll get addicted to writing and you should – the world is always in need for great artists and you could be the next one.