Hello everyone! I can’t believe we’re already two weeks into the second semester of the school year. Things have been mildly hectic as it’s been snowing an abnormal amount for the deep south, and therefore our school has been panicking and throwing assignments at us left and right in an attempt to make up for time lost.
But alas, I am no longer drowning in my studies, and I am very excited for today’s post. I have a few announcements before we jump into things though!
First, I have put all of my posts into categories. As I’m sure you have noticed, my blog doesn’t exactly have a niche. So since I write about so many different things with no rhyme or reason, I thought it might be good to at least categorize them.
Second, I’m starting a new series called Writer’s Block. In this series, I aim to give you advice and answer any questions that you might have about the art of writing (so, if you have any questions PLEASE LEAVE THEM IN THE COMMENTS!).
This is going to be the first of hopefully many posts of this nature, and I hope you enjoy it. In this post, I hope to give you some good tips about ways to refine your writing skills.
Let’s get to it, shall we?
I know what you’re thinking…
… but hear me out.
What better way is there to refine your skills than by writing detailed posts and creating intricate storylines? You get to practice writing, world-building, character development, plus it’s a great way to make friends (which, eventually these friends could become potential fans).
There are a multitude of online communities available for roleplaying if you look, plus Facebook and Goodreads (which is where I do my RPs… go friend me). Roleplaying, despite its terrible reputation and geeky facade, is a fantastic way to improve your writing.
I am guilty of not doing this one enough, but chronicling your day — with as much detail as you can remember — will not only improve your writing and your “showing” (rather than telling) but it will also prove to be therapeutic.
Journalling, whether in an actual bound diary or digitally, is a fantastic means of practice. When I write, I actually like to journal beforehand because it seems to get my word juices flowing.
I probably wouldn’t use these for inspiration unless you change them drastically, but they’re FANTASTIC for practice. You can find heaps of them on Pinterest (just don’t STAY on Pinterest, because then you won’t be writing and I will be mad at you for using my advice in the wrong way) and other places on the internet.
Here is an example of my (somewhat terrible) recent prompt practices…
Two thousand soldiers drew their swords for a war they would not win. And I stood there, above them all.
Little did they know that I would be the one to kill end their lives. Slaves to the cause. That’s all they were. Though, I suppose you can’t blame them for being brainwashed considering they were barely out of childhood.
I have been around a very long time, and I’ve seen these things happen before. Past, present, future, humans repeat themselves. It is an endless cycle that I have seen – will see – a million times.
I reach out with my mind. It is time to end this mass suffering, this massacre. I heard the cry of their first fallen as she hit the ground. Though far away, I could see the crimson spill against the pristine white of the snow. It didn’t take long for the clean canvas of land to disappear. My mental sword reached down, cutting, slicing, killing each and every one of them. Well, not all of them.
I turn around and meet a mirror. My twin stands before me, a pillar of grace against my chaos. “Ellora,” I said. My voice hit the atmosphere like a sonic boom.
“It’s been a long time.” she replied.
“Drop the niceties, Alyss,”
Her smile disappeared. My sister, the epitome of all things good, drew her sword. And without hesitation, I touched my Third Eye, and coaxed out my own. “I’ll see you in hell, sister,” And then commenced our fatal waltz.
See? Even though it isn’t great (because it is unedited and quite rough) it still got me in the mood to write.
How else can you get a feel for what a reader enjoys, and how things are commonly written if you don’t read? If you don’t read, yet you try to write, then you won’t have any idea of what to do when it comes to syntax and structure and even things like dialogue.
Trust me, I’ve read works by people who didn’t read AT ALL. They were… definitely not the best they could have been.
Duh! Even though it isn’t fiction (unless you write a blog where it is fictional, somehow) it still gets the creative juices flowing and can serve as a fantastic tool for writing.
Not to mention, you’re building your platform with readers when you blog! Your followers will one day read the fictional things that you write, in the same way, that they read your posts.
I really hope this post comes in handy to you. If you want to RP, I can’t promise that I can but my Goodreads is a click away. All you’ve got to do is send me a PM and we can discuss! Do you have any suggestions for future posts? (Either for this series or something else). Let me know in the comments. See you soon!