Monday, December 15, 2014

Embracing Your Writing Style

Forgive me father for I have sinned. I am guilty of coveting.

Let me preface this post by stating that I am not in fact a Catholic. I don't know what it's like to confess my sins to a Priest, but I am most definitely guilty of coveting. Not the usual type. Sure there are times I want something someone else has, but for the most part I'm pretty content with my life and grateful for all I have. What I'm talking about is more specific, and writing related. I covet writing styles.

There have been so many times I've read someone else's words and thought "Ugh, I want to write like her/him!" And I WANT WANT WANT it SO bad. There's Maggie Stiefvater, John Green, Laini Taylor, Sarah Dessen, Alexandra Bracken, Stepanie Perkins...I could go on and on. I love reading so much but there are times when I feel so completely out of my league and think to myself, "If I could just write like so and so my story would be so much better". But it's not the story I'm really referring to, but myself. If I wrote more like so and so I would be better. And that's total BS and kinda bananas.

I'm not into voodoo magic or anything, but there are times when I think if I had the power to gain someone else's ability to write a certain way I might jump on that cheating train. Because that's what it really is when you get right down to it: cheating. I want to write like so any amazing authors but if all of us wrote like everyone else things would get pretty boring pretty fast. Just like we as individuals are different, so are our writing styles. I need to tell myself this every time I tear apart another scene, character flaw, word choice etc. I have a style that is uniquely mine and no one else's and I need to LOVE it with all I have, while also trying to be better at this whole writing thing. The only way I can do that is by continuing to go go go, by continuing to read, by continuing to get critiqued and strengthening my weaknesses.

Will I ever get to a point where I think I'm REALLY good at this writing thing? Doubtful. But being a perfect writer is as an unattainable goal as being a perfect person. It just isn't possible or realistic. All I can do is progress and love the journey that will hopefully span a lifetime.