Thursday, April 09, 2009

Learning to Appreciate

Have you ever sat and read a book, paused and wished you wrote like that? Of course you have, we all have at one point or another, its probably what got us into writing.

I love description. I love reading description. I love writing description. Unfortunately, my writing style does not jive with long passages describing windswept moors or the way an errant lock of hair strays to a perfect brow. I describe what I have to and then get out.

Today I was reading a book and the author described a character and really put in some lovely words. Man, I thought, why can't I do that? And the simple reason is because that isn't my style. I've tried. But it is jarring and slows everything up. I hit the delete key and get rid of my poetic prose.

It really is a matter of recognizing your voice and style and appreciating what you do with it. Some writers' voices lend themselves to using different elements in their writing. For some, its dialogue. Others, its humor. And some carry us away with beautiful descriptions.

Readers are looking for a voice they can feel when they read. They want to lose themselves to the story you are telling. And they want to hear your unique voice. Value what you bring to the table in your writing and strive to make it yours. The world doesn't need another Nora Roberts or Stephen King. Read through your writing and see if you can see what makes you unique and focus on it. Figure out what your strengths are and trust your writer's voice to make it work.

Trust is something we struggle with as writers. Because we are involved in a career filled with rejection, we forget to trust ourselves and our voice. Learn to appreciate what you can do and believe it is as good as you think it is.

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