5 ways to not come off as a newbie writer.
Writing isn’t so much about hard and fast rules, as much as it is about creative determination. And yet when you know good writing you just know. But nobody wants to look like a newbie writer even when they are. Here are some tricks that help your manuscripts look professional.
Most writers face issues with the pace of their stories. We don’t think about this often but the uneven pace of our stories and the way the plot unfolds tends to show just how unsure we are about them.
Do we give our protagonist too many struggles to overcome? Or do we give them challenges that meet their capabilities? Do we stray from our legal drama mindset and delve into the dark arts or do we jump ship entirely and throw a shark tornado into the mix. As a newbie writer, we must not mask our indecision as creativity. It doesn’t end well.
Sometimes the readers cannot keep up with the whiplash we create for them and that is because we are not keeping up either. The pace of the story must not be too fast or too slow and the protagonist must not reflect what we know about the plot.
The challenges that the protagonist has to face have to be of consequence to the reader. The readers may or may not relate to all your other characters, but if they don’t relate to the protagonist then all that hard work was for nothing. We don’t necessarily need a dragon to make the plots interesting, we need protagonists that readers feel emotionally invested in to create excitement in the story.
There is no hard and fast rule for making your protagonists relatable. But when creating them we must take care, especially of their histories, motivations, and goals. Our protagonists cannot be hazy and undiscovered and even when they are, it must be so by design. Get to know your protagonists.
Readers like clarity to some degree. This is not to say that you shouldn’t experiment with your manuscripts. But readers can be muddle with confusion to a degree. Chances are, they’ll just put the book down if it gets too confusing. This happens when they are no longer able to follow up on any of the plot lines or when certain plot lines start to contradict themselves.
Readers can’t be lost from the very first page. They wouldn’t be interested in the story if it is fuzzy from the get to. Often we miss these details because it makes sense to us. This why you need an editor to let you know just when someone’s likely to put the book down.
As a writer, we often mistake describing something well with describing it a lot and that is not the case. The secret to accurately describing a concept, a scene or an emotion is often in its brevity. The wordiness often disappoints a reader whereas the subtleties can make a much better impression. It is not about using more words as much as it is about using the right ones.
There is really nothing like finding the infestation of typos in your manuscript right after you have sent it. Which is why you must take the time out to make basic edits in your work despite the pressure of meeting deadlines.
In fact, it is much better to make someone else do it. It is likely that you won’t see what’s wrong with the text because of having read it so many times. The more you read something, the less likely you are to catch obvious mistakes.
Whether you are just starting off or you have been writing for quite some time, there are many ways to improve your craft. There’s always room to learn. Bad writing paves the way for good writing.
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