How To Understand What Kind Of Writer You Are

By on October 25, 2019

Do you want to understand what kind of writer you are? Read on to discover how you tick! Being a great writer is about a lot of things, and it takes time, practice, and dedication to the craft to become more masterful at it.

Understanding what kind of writer you are is also essential. If you can understand this, you can get a much clearer picture of what you need to do to achieve your goals and become a more productive and prolific writer as a result. 

When it comes to setting your writing schedule, your goals, and timelines, there is a whole world of advice out there. However, not all advice works for all writers (though almost every piece of it will work for someone!). So it is through a process of self-discovery, experimentation, and trial and error that you can hope to find out what kind of writing you are, and therefore what type of writing works for you. 

So what type of writer are you? Here are some of the archetypes that might sound familiar:

The writer who seeks outside motivation

Sometimes it is not by looking internally, but by instead focusing our attention on what happens outside ourselves that can provide the inspiration necessary to motivate ourselves to start and complete a book. Do you find it helpful to know how many now successful authors were rejected in the past? Do you secretly judge other writers published work and think 'I could do a better job than that?' If this sounds like you, then you need to keep those gears turning by checking out lists such as Publisher's Weekly to discover the latest on what's being published and sold, and what editors are looking for and why. If this inspires your competitive side, then this could help fuel the fire to get that manuscript finished. You could also find your writing 'nemisis' and follow their career and try to outdo them.

The writer who holds themselves to the highest standards

If you are the kind of writer who undertakes continuous research before starting your novel, who refuses to submit a manuscript until you've checked it, edited it and polished it many times over, and needs everything to be 'just so' before you begin a writing session this could be you. Of course, it's great to set the bar high for yourself, but sometimes it can stop you from getting going in the first place. To prevent this from happening, why not get a writing partner or join a writing group? Having others to help drive your writing forward and who will hold you to account if your perfectionist tendencies get in the way of completing your work can help ensure that you stay on the right track.

The writer who gives everything (or nothing)

If one day, you are totally immersed in your writing and everything seems to be going swimmingly, and the words flow, and they are beautiful and poetic, and your heart sings with the knowledge that this is what you were born to do…and the next, you feel sluggish, demotivated, and like you are a total fool for even trying, you could be an all or nothing type of writer. While, when things are going your way, you are the most productive of all your comrades, when you aren't feeling it, you get nothing done, and this makes progress and continuity slow. Try to combat this by taking yourself off to write in different locations and giving yourself specific time-bound challenges to keep your interest piqued and motivation high. 

This list of writing archetypes contains the three most common, though there are others, and variations and combinations of these also. There are, of course, many different ways to write, and no absolute right way to do so. However, by getting to know your writing self you can get rid of the obstacles that might get in your way, and can ensure your progress is steady and robust and as satisfying as possible. 

So now you understand what kind of writer you are, why not learn the main challenges you'll face as a writer?

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bethany cadman
Bethany Cadman -

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