We all want to be better writers. Likewise, we all want to become better writers as quickly and easily as possible. Discover the 5 best ways you can become a better writer — today!
1. Read, Read, Read
Writing is hard if you don’t read. It’s even harder to be a [good] writer if you don’t read every day. Before you sit down to write, why not take a little time to read, even if it’s only 30 minutes or so? Try reading things you wouldn’t normally read, like: essays, short stories, or a different genre than the one that you’re used to working with.
Find really powerful writers with powerful stories. Pay attention to what they do, how they tell their stories and how they bend their words across the page. You never know what kind of inspiration you might find.
2. Don’t Be Afraid to Bleed a Little
Many of you will be familiar with the famed Hemingway quote, “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.” While that quote may be of dubious origin, its meaning is spot on. The greatest writers are ones who bore pieces of themselves onto the page. Their characters are touching, relatable and sometimes even heartbreaking.
If you want to write fiction that lasts you can’t be afraid to “bleed”. Pour yourself onto the page. Paint your characters with your hurts, your triumphs, your failures. Make them human. Make them fragile. Make them so real that it hurts. If you’re writing poetry, expose yourself. Write the words you’re afraid to admit – even to yourself.
It’s only when we bleed into our work that we make something truly alive.
3. Don’t Fear What Others Might Think
This one is a hard one, especially for writers, but it’s one that we must conquer in order to become better authors or poets. In this day and age, society is more judgmental than ever. Everywhere we turn we are faced with a constant bombardment of comparison and criticism, whether it comes from social media or our own personal relationships.
But, if you want to be a better writer today you have to let that go.
Write what sings to you. What YOUR truths. Don’t think about what your family would say or your friends. Write what sings to your soul – the others be damned. Until you let go of your fear of judgement you will never be truly free to write your greatest stories. Do don’t be afraid of what others think of your work. You might just be surprised when you see what happens next.
4. Be Bold
Break the laws of physics. Write about a monster you’ve created in your own head. Punch that genre that everyone expected from you right out of the window.
Being a writer is a creative endeavor. The operative word there is CREATIVE. You don’t have to adhere to any laws or any expectations. Write what energizes you, write what inspires you. Write anything and everything that you want to.
That’s the point of creativity. It doesn’t mean being bound by some preconceived notions of right or wrong. And it surely doesn’t mean “meeting expectations”. Write the weird, write the terrifying. Be brazenly bold in your writing and fearless in your creativity.
5. Write. EVERY. SINGLE. DAMN. DAY.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. It’s hard to be a writer if you aren’t writing. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.
Every great writer, from Hemingway to Rowling, Martin to Angelou, have 1 thing in common – they wrote every day. Read any interview with your favorite writer and, chances are, you’ll hear them say the same thing.
Sit down in front of your computer or your journal and just write. Something. Anything. It doesn’t matter what you write, just make sure you are writing every day. It doesn’t have to be the next great piece of fiction. Hell, it doesn’t even have to be a good idea, just put the words on the page and then go back and read them. You’ll be surprised how much you grow.