Make These Mistakes To Know You’re A Real Writer

By on June 24, 2016
Make These Mistakes To Know You’re A Real Writer - Writer's

Being a writer is a learning curve, one that never ends. If you are in a constant state of learning, a constant state of improving, and trying new things, then you are also going to constantly make mistakes.

Making mistakes is simply part of the writing process and every writer will fall into them at some point or another along the way.

So what are the most common ones, the ones that tell us we are real writers? Let’s take a look!

You edit as you go

Many writers have tried to write their stories and edit them at the same time. This is usually a terrible idea. Write first, edit later. Getting your entire story down, not matter how flawed, is always the best way to begin. If you start critiquing yourself too early, and going back to edit and change parts of your book, it can easily become fractured and confused. Complete the first draft and then go back to re-work it, otherwise you could get so bogged down in the editing you never actually finish.

You created a wonderful land, with wonderful people…

Stories need conflict and tension, they also need characters that are relatable and flawed. A rich and interesting story will have a conflict, a struggle that needs to be resolved or overcome. You can choose whether or not this happens, but having it there will pique your readers interest, they need to be willing for something to happen. If there is no conflict, no struggle, where is the hook that keeps them reading? Create a range of characters too, your readers don’t have to love them all, in fact creating unsavoury, unlikeable characters is all part of the fun!

Cliches, cliches everywhere

It is impossible to go through your writing life without, at some point, writing a piece of fiction that is so cliched that when you read back on it later you can’t help but cringe. Try to keep your writing fresh and interesting at all times. Sure, there are certain ‘rules’ in every genre, but there is no need to simply re-write the same tired old story again and again, be original, and unique, offer something different - you might divide opinion, but at least you’ll get people talking.

Your characters are similar, boring and no-one likes them

It sounds harsh but it does happen. Some of your characters have to be ones we are rooting for, without this no one will care what is happening to them. All of them have to be interesting - no matter how small a part they play. Don’t get lazy with your characters, take your time to make each and every one of them stand out.

You don’t do your research

Using your imagination is wonderful, and there is naturally a certain amount of creative license that comes with writing a fictional piece. However, if your book is set in a hospital, then then least you could do is visit one, do some research to understand medical language, talk to people that work there. Your readers need to believe what you are telling them so don’t make it difficult for them by writing about something you have no knowledge of.

Writing a novel is a massive challenge, but ultimately a very rewarding one. Making mistakes is all part of the process, but the less you do, the less editing you have to do at the end, so make note of these, keep practicing, and the easier your life will be!

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

Bethany Cadman -author of 'Doctor Vanilla's Sunflowers'

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