Unless you’re done of them, you probably have a decent amount of appreciation for creative people such as artists, musicians or writers. If you are one of them, you have even more appreciation for the dedication and passion that they have in their respective crafts. If you, yourself, are an aspiring writer and really want to put the time and effort into getting into the big leagues, here are some qualities that you should watch for within yourself and bring out.
• A large and effective vocabulary: Since the job of a writer is to work with words and create sentences, paragraphs and pieces of content all day long, they will develop a large vocabulary while working. This doesn’t mean they have to natively have a collection of words in they’re head, of course, but rather a love for words. Most writers love their thesaurus as much as they love their dictionary for that reason in particular.
• A love for reading: Bet you saw this one coming, didn’t you? Writers must enjoy reading because they can’t writer without education in words and reading. What they read doesn’t have to correlate to what they write about, of course. They just need to enjoy spending hours reading novels, articles, newspapers, whatever suits their fancy. This makes them stronger and better writers, too. Think of it as training for writers!
• The ability to reword something in simple terms: One of the most complex parts of writing is that they need to take verbose information and confirm it into something that makes sense to anyone who happens to read it. They need to spell out the facts, emotions and details to the reader without being obvious about it. This takes patience and time, of course, but it also takes the sheer quality and ability to re-word something in a way that is engaging and makes sense. This is the prime example of why there is more than one draft in most written pieces!
• The power to construct something from start to finish: There is a particular architecture to a piece of writing. It has an introduction, body paragraphs that are organized in a logical order, and a conclusion that has a complete ending to satisfy the reader. That all takes careful construction, refining and organization that often gets missed by readers who simply see the finished product. If this is something that feels natural to you, you’ll have an easier time being a writer.
• No ego or superiority complex: This can be said for a lot of the industries out there, of course, but inferior writers often don’t take it seriously. No matter how good you are writing and how many positive reviews you get, you will get problem customers and rude reviewers that will rip your work to shreds. Again, it doesn’t matter how good you are, that’s just how it works. If you have a big ego, you won’t be able to recover from rejection from publications or a negative review on your book or customer experience. You’ll need to stay humble and appreciative of your talent. A superiority complex means you won’t be opening yourself up to new learning experiences or opportunities to grow as a writer.
• Make suggestions for ideas in a single glance: Writers get good at recognizing pros, cons and issues with other writing. Just like professionals in other industries, you get to be “old hat” at what you do. So, at a single glance of a content brief, or the introductory chapter of a novel, good writers will be able to offer comments or concerns or even feedback that is as well thought-out as that of someone who’s spent hours. Why? They are good at what they do and they can apply that skill and talent and experience to the writing and/or instructions of other people.
• The power to roll over an idea in their head for ages before writing it down: Whether it’s plot holes, a tricky title, a post twist or something else entirely, it all takes time to come. You can’t just force it to come together on a timeline. Good writers understand that they may be stuck on the same paragraph for 3 weeks and then, with the right revelation that comes from rolling an idea around in the back of their mind for the past 21 days, they are able to finish the paragraph and then write 30 more pages while they’re at it. It’s part of the process and it isn’t stressful or frustrating. It just is.
A lot of writers may not even realize they have all of these qualities because they often can be best determined or observed by people around them. But if you really want to become a good writer, these are the qualities to focus on.