My Top 5 Writing Tips

I’m no genius when it comes to writing, but here are five things that have really improved my writing. I hope they help you as well…

 

1. Remember,writing isn’t a formula, it’s a passion: You can read every how to book in the world and get nowhere, because despite all the studying in the world, your writing won’t sing in that special way without passion. Not to say that how to books aren’t useful, they’re quite wonderful, just make sure that you take others advice and tailor it to fit you, because you are a unique writer, and your passion is what makes you unique.

2. It’s all in the details: Details make your writing feel real. I don’t mean that you need to jam each scene and sentence with details, aka spend two paragraphs on your characters surroundings. What I mean is there’s a difference, a big difference between-

Gail bounced the ball to Stacy.

And

Gail bounced the red rubber ball to Stacy.

These details bring your story to life. Better yet, if you’re talking about something special, learn all you can about it and use words that are very specific. If you are talking about a boat don’t say-

The front of the boat.

Try saying

The bow of the boat.

It adds a nice authenticity, and that authenticity is important. You’re readers probably won’t notice it, but they will notice how engaging your writing is.

3. Daydream: This is my favorite tip hehe. Basically if you want to write a world well, immerse yourself in it, let yourself wander around, take yourself to places and scenes that excite you. Don’t think about how it might not work on paper, or even if it’s a good scene, just play around, put yourself in the main characters shoes and live their life.

4. Get intimate with your characters: The better you know your characters, the better you can write them. Join them in their most intimate moments (even if they don’t appear in the story), see how they react, how they feel and think. How does your character propose to their sweetheart? What are they like in the bedroom? How did they react to a loved one’s death?

5. Write the book you really, really want to read: Think about it, fantasize, that book you haven’t come across, but so dearly want to read. Maybe you like zombies, but all the zombie books are lacking the one thing you would most like to see, zombies with machine guns. Write it!

 

Do you have any tips that have really improved your writing?

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7 thoughts on “My Top 5 Writing Tips

  1. I’m not sure that I agree with your examples for number 2. Perhaps the adjectives “red” and “rubber” add something, but that, imo, depends on the context. Are those details actually important to the scene and story? Would they have been noticed by the character?

    If you’re trying to portray the protagonist as detail oriented, sure. But what if the POV character is kind of oblivious? If so, noting the ball is red and rubber actually conflicts with what you’re trying to say about the character.

    Same kind of thing with “bow” instead of “front.” Is this your character’s first time to ever step on a boat? Or does the character have a knowledge of boating? Maybe your character read up on boating beforehand, and you want to highlight that by using “bow.” Or maybe you want to show the character as ignorant by using “front.”

    All this is very context specific. I get that, if you depend too much on context, you’d never use any examples. This specific tip, however, struck me as quite lacking in terms of considering a larger picture.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a very good point, and I really appreciate you pointing it out! It’s something I failed to touch on, to really delve into. It is much better to match your characters viewpoint, or knowledge of the subject. If they don’t know what it’s called, they might just call it a thingy-majig, or something similar. That’s more genuine.
    In the case with the ball I’m thinking more along the lines of narration, not inside the characters head per se. I’ve noticed details used in narration really make a story, pop, for lack of a better word. It can mean the difference between feeling like a story written by a novice and a story written by a pro, at least in my experience as a reader.

    With humble appreciation,
    Meno

    Like

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