The author, Stephen King* has famously said,
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
Read your genre.
Absorb your genre.
Let it become part of you – your writer’s voice.
Who is your ideal reader?
Everyone is different is the correct answer. Every story has a unique audience.
What kind of story are you writing?
These are clarifying questions you must ask before you begin to write. In short, identify your genre. Genre is a promise to the reader, don’t break that promise. Good writers know where the reader wants to go, then take them there in unexpected ways.
Writing makes the author vulnerable by exposing them to judgments and opinions. But this is a necessary part of any art form. Asking for and offering constructive criticism of your work is essential to becoming a better writer. The more feedback you receive before you present your work to your final audience, the better. And reading critiques of other works can inspire your work in meaningful ways.
“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There’s no way around these two things that I’m aware of, no shortcut.” —Stephen King*
One of the most important things you can get from a writing community is feedback. It’s not always easy to find people who are willing to read and critique your work, but a good writing community will have plenty of people who are happy to do just that.
*No endorsement of Writers Critique (site) is implied by Stephen King.
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