To be a writer is to be a chronicler of life, in whatsoever genre you may write. Thus, writing must come from a place of deep and intense truth. The great German poet Rilke said, to paraphrase him, that writing must come from that deepest, innermost impulse within that negates all possibility of not writing. However, it’s not all rosy rosy. Writing takes effort, but the question is how to be a better writer?. So here are a few ways to work on yourself as a writer and better yourself each day.
How To Be A Better Writer? Ways To Work On Yourself As A Writer:
Read extensively and variedly
Reading is the fulcrum, the focal point of writing. It introduces you to new genres, allowing you to zero in on the genre you want to write in. Then, it exposes you to the kind of writing in the genre you write in. This could be regarding the descriptions, dialogues, language, mode of expression or mood that serves the genre the best. In addition, reading sparks imagination. Ruminating on art, expressly written art, allows you to explore new dimensions of your mind and give expression to them as a writer. It is so very important to read books of different types and in high numbers to be a good writer.
Soak in experiences from all over the world
As I mentioned previously, writers are chroniclers of life who seek truth in its most distilled form. To have this shred of concentrated truth in your writing, it is first necessary to know what life is. And for that, it is crucial to experience life, in its myriad dimensions. One of the best ways to do this is to travel. Travelling allows you to understand the complexities and intricacies of the world. It will expose you to mini worlds vastly different from your own. This will give you inspiration while also giving you subject matter for your books.
Observe and introspect
I firmly believe that all inspiration boils down to two processes of mental and philosophical activity – observation and introspection. To observe the world is to witness it with a keen but detached eye, to perceive it and make sense of it. Observing is thus the precursor to interpreting the world, and it is an observant eye that will pick up material worth writing about. Introspection is a variant of observation – it is observation directed towards the self. Thus, introspection allows you to go within and explore the limits of the human mind, which will greatly help your writing.
Converse and read the world
People are perhaps the most interesting subjects of books. Aristotle, in his Poetics, regarded plot above all other elements of fiction, but I believe that it is the character that makes the plot. A book can function without a plot, such as Virginia Woolf’s stream of consciousness books, but not without a character. Your character is your lens of looking at the world in the story. And, you will find your finest characters, and write your wittiest dialogue when you talk to people and take them seriously.
Just pick up the damn pen!
The final, and most important piece of advice to improve your writing, is to write. Seems counterintuitive, but it’s perhaps the best piece of advice for writers. Writers tend to ruminate and reflect and think and daydream, but the novel isn’t going to write itself. Yes, you need clarity of thought, but for most writers, stories and words just flow. So, it’s important to abandon that reflex to flesh out a character a little more, or to add another plot point in your imagination and just sit down and write. Even if the draft is terrible, it will at least be existent. From then, you can edit is as much as you write. But you cannot edit, or publish, what you don’t write.
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