As you may remember, my internet died over December. During that time, I was featured in a series of posts on Cassandra Jade’s blog. Seeing as how many of you probably didn’t see it, I thought I would re-post it again on this blog. Some things I’ve written may seem a little strange as it’s been taken out of context. If you like, you can see the original here.
When I decided to write a guest post for this blog, the first question I asked myself is: “well, what IS writing?” Technically, writing is words or other symbols written down as a means of communication (taken from Encarta World English Dictionary), but writing has to be more than that. So what is writing?
Now at the same of writing this post, I was struggling with a short story I’m writing for my blog. I like it… until I read it, or sit down to write it. Then I wonder what on earth I was thinking. “It’s crap. It’s stupid. Why on earth am I writing this?” Then I decide not to put it up on the blog, because I’m embarrassed at what I’ve written. “Everybody else are all better writers than me, but if they can’t read my work, then they can’t know how bad I am…”
And then I realised what writing is. Writing is a lifelong lesson. We never stop becoming better writers. Of course I can’t be a better writer than someone who’s been writing for a decade. They’ve had 10 years of experience over my four.
Some lucky people have a gift. They can write magic from the age of 10. But for the rest of us, we have to practice. Practice makes perfect, after all.
To prove my point, I decided to read my first piece of work, a novella (or novel as I preferred to call it at the time) of about 20K. I wrote when I was about 12. I’ll be honest. It was horrible. Two dimensional characters. Major plot holes. It’s a perfect example of how NOT to write. I wanted to stop reading a couple of points. But I got through it, and as a comparison, I read a section of my current work. And it’s not bad. Sure, it’ll never get published, and in 10 years, I’ll cringe at the sight of it. But right now, it’s what I consider some of my best writing.
So there you have. Writing is a lifelong lesson. We will always get better. Don’t be ashamed to show other writers your work. They were at the same stage as you once. All they did was practice. They didn’t have to finish their project. They might have a hundred half-written novels lying around. But it’s all practice.
I think I’ll post my short story now.
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