Nobody wants their writing to be described as “conventional” or “formulaic,” and in an effort to avoid such damning judgements, many young writers throw themselves past creative writing guides, the rules of writing, and all the catalogues of conventional wisdom, instead opting to carve their own path.
But before you follow suit and bend all the rules to write experimental fiction, there are a few things you need to know.
Writers are a funny bunch. On one point, we are driven and self-aware, capable of exercising massive amounts of discipline when we need to focus on the task at hand. Yet at other times, we’re distracted, self-critical, and destructive.
Part of the doubt writers face comes up because the creative process isn’t an easy thing to experience. It’s incredibly difficult to create something out of nothing day in and day out.
But when you can identify these critical mistakes writers make, you’ll be ready to overcome your doubts and challenges and actually finish your writing projects.
You’ve probably heard the age-old adage of “show, don’t tell” at least a thousand times in your writing career so far. It’s arguably one of the most-used writing tips about. Why then, is it also the one mistake most writers make over all others?
I heard “show, don’t tell” so many times, it became a useless mantra to chant, rather than put into action. I had no idea that by ignoring it, I was actually writing flat, monotonous narrative.
So, what does it mean to show and not tell? Well—it all comes down to drama.
If you’re someone who writes regularly—even more so if you write for others as well as your own platform—the demands can easily take their toll, right? You find yourself writing to formula, and if you’re not careful the demands of writing can become a deafening cacophony of noise in your head.
Fortunately, a simple writing exercise might be just the thing to need to jumpstart your creativity and help you rediscover your creative voice.
I’ll start with the bad news.
Much of what you’ve heard about daily routines is more fictional than the stories you’re writing. Everyone seems to have their own “key” to productivity: motivation, willpower, passion, and big goals being the most common.
While these all have the vague ring of truthiness, you’ve probably noticed that, in practice, the results of such methods are inconsistent to nonexistent.
Fortunately, there’s a simple cure.