I’ve been writing for about fifteen years now and it’s taken me this long to figure something out. Something I should’ve learned a long time ago. You ready for this? Because it’s mind blowing.
You don’t have to write like anybody else. You can be you with your words and your stories and that’s okay.
Yeah, I know what you’re thinking . . . “Seriously? It took you a decade and a half to figure that out? Sheesh. Slow learner or what?”
But it’s not like that. Of course I knew, just like everyone, that you must have a unique voice to your writing. That’s what sets your writing apart. Yet I always aspired to be like my favorite authors, creating stories they would approve of, mimicking their style, and that is so restrictive. No, it’s worse. It chokes the life out of your own writing.
If you sit down to play the comparison game, you will lose.
So here’s some free advice: don’t do that. Easier said than done, I know, but here are some affirmations for you to print out on sticky notes and slap on your wall. Hopefully it will take less than 15 years to be freed from the bondage of conformance.
Write like you think.
Don’t write how you think you should.
Embrace your passions.
Don’t embrace what you think are marketable passions.
Everyone’s voice has value.
Your voice is as important as any other authors, and their voice is as important as yours, leaving no space for pride or degradation.
Creation is not right or wrong, it just is.
There isn’t a correct way to tell a story nor an absolute wrong way. A riveting story is riveting no matter the style it’s told in.
The art you create is as unique as yourself.
Art is subjective. Some will love it. Others hate it. Your goal is to create, not to get everyone to like what you create.
Sure, these all seem like common sense ideas, and they are, but agreeing with them and believing them are two different things. There is freedom in believing. Freefall into it. You won’t be sorry.