By Solam Yves Ludidi
Every author has a unique style of writing, be it in politics, crime, sports, entertainment or about life struggles; we all write to fulfill our own destinations. Down on paper, I communicate knowledge of facts to the masses, encourage others and serve as a teacher or trusted counsellor to some – hence I hold the title – The Writer.
Everyone has a story to tell. Take, for instance, Stacey Fru who is an 11-year-old award-winning author, started writing at the tender age of five. The Johannesburg-based writer now has five books under her belt. If a five-year-old can do it, why can’t you?
Some people just don’t know where to start. Authorship can be grasped from learning the basics, such as reflecting on personal experiences. This is one of the basic skills we all learn at school. All it takes to succeed as a writer, is to continuously review and revise your work.
You may also observe other people’s writing techniques.
According to novelist and biographer Jerry Jenkins, beginners have to immerse themselves in the craft. “If you really want to make a career of it, make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into. Full-time writing is not a hobby, a diversion or an avocation. It means discipline, it’s a job and it’s not easy.”
The creator of The Snowflake Method of Plotting, Randy Ingermanson, says good writing is based on three easy steps:
1. “Write a lot. The more you write, the more you’ll tune in to your unique voice and the better you’ll get.
2. Get critiqued occasionally. You should never pay attention to what your mother says about your writing. Or what anyone who loves you says about your writing, because all those people are liars. You should pay attention only to people who know what good writing is, and who also know how to critique bad writing.
3. Study the craft of writing in books, lectures, or wherever else you can learn it.
One of the tips about writing I like most includes Jenkins’, when he says “before submitting anything, be sure you’re happy with every word. Become an aggressive, even ferocious self-editor.” Meaning that whatever you do, never give up until you reach the finish line.
Therefore, if you happen to be that chap born with ink in your veins, just hit the write note. As Ernest Hemingway puts it: “Don’t think about your writing when you’re not writing.”