What makes a book great? Is it an absorbing story? A compelling protagonist? A sharp dialogue? Great books contain all these elements but what truly makes them great is their inimitable writing style.
As you advance in your journey to authordom, you must seek ways to improve your writing style. The most notable writers have their own writing style based on how they use words, sentence structure, and overall approach to writing. The art of writing is not learned overnight. Writing requires time, dedication, practice, and the right habits to help hone writing craft here and now. Even the authors of the greatest novels and novellas spend their entire careers confronting challenges as they strive to harness their writing.
Writing can be a real pain at times. It is a complex act taking into consideration of the characters, scenes, and plots that must live and breathe. For those trying their hand at writing for the first time, it’s worth heeding the tips listed below. Writing is just a matter of becoming aware of what you can do to give your writing more structure, crispiness, and engagement. Improve your writing tenfold with these key steps before self publishing a book:
Favor Active Voice
An active voice is stronger than a passive voice. It is the most direct path to making your point. The passive voice will still convey a similar point, but it creates long, complex sentences and is a weaker way of presenting the information. By using active voice, the writing will be direct and make the narrative stronger, resulting in a more compelling prose. Moreover, the active voice presents the subject as doing something which is more exciting to read than a passive voice.
Write Shorter Sentences
A story loses steam with wordiness and large chunks of texts. The shorter the sentences are, the powerful they can convey an idea. Trimming sentences and paragraphs means fewer texts, keeping readers’ attention. Texts that are broken up are more digestible and keeps readers engaged. Shorter paragraphs with white space between them are less intimidating and more welcoming for readers. A shorter structure has a dramatic effect that it draws special attention to a statement.
Play with Sentence Structures
A writer’s writing style has the power to enliven millions of people. Another step to amp your writing style is to look at the sentence structures. A writer must create sentences that flow to enhance impact, mood, and effect in the narrative. Take note of the monotony, amateurish writing, dangling participles, awkward phrasing, style blunders, information dumps, and grammatical mistakes. Whether you’re writing romance or stark prose, knowing sentence structures inside out will greatly improve your writing style.
Build Your Vocabulary
One of the easiest ways to improve your writing style is to expand your vocabulary. A great writer is an effective communicator. Using the right words in storytelling effectively communicates ideas to readers. Thus, writers constantly build their vocabulary. Learning new words and ways to say things pump up your writing. The English language is one of the most voluminous languages in the world, and this means you’ll never run out of vocabulary to learn and use.
Learn from Your Favorites
Authors in all genres evolve and develop new techniques through revisiting classics to learn more. Reading extensively is an easy way to start developing your writing style. After all, the keen readers are the best writers in the book publishing industry. Reading books should be both for pleasure and investment in your own writing craft. Reading from other writers can broaden horizons and offer techniques to use in your writing.
Works from your favorite writers are a treasure trove of wisdom on writing style as well as containing a great wealth of different ways to tell a story. Many great writers put a stamp on their writing style that you can pick up. Choose a classic and examine the author’s writing style, language choice, and quirks.