A Cautionary Word

“A word of caution to this tale” (points if you can name the reference)

We all love great writers and their wonderful works. 9 times out of 10, those are the reasons we aspire to become writers. But for all those future writers out there: when you read, read while sucking on a grain of salt.

When we read a magnificent story, where not only the plot but the words, the construction of sentences becomes a a piece of art, a thought can pass through our entertained minds. “It’s so simple, these great sentences, these plot twists, so simple that I should be able to do the same thing!”

The next thought is what separates the writers who are serious about becoming authors, and those who wish to dabble. “So amazing, he/she must have taken forever to get that one sentence/ scene just right.” While reading, it is easy to become consumed by the beauty and intricacy of a novel, but I believe that if you want some kind of confirmation that who you are is a writer then you should be able to take a step back, look behind the curtain, and realize that it is not easy.

Great writers are great because they take simple ideas, build them up, dress and present them to the world in a cohesive fashion, all while doing it so everyone can grasp their meaning. To admire them because of their simplicity is folly. No matter how easy it is to grasp the meaning, be surprised, or marvel at the wordsmith skills, there is nothing ‘easy’ about making the book.

I’m not saying get discouraged, give up now because you’ll never write like that. Not at all! I’m saying getting fired up about it, don’t just emulate what you read, but make it anew and show the world that you belong up there.

Don’t get discouraged when you find creating a beautiful cohesive sentence, let alone a book, isn’t as simple as you original thought.

Some of the authors who have made great works appear simple and elegant for me are:

Tamora Pierce, J.K. Rowling, Suzanne Collins, D.J. Machale, John Flanaghan.

What about you?


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Filed under encouragement, Writing Tips

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