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The better the reader, the better the writer


You have finished. Finally, you got to the end of your story, or to the end of that “eternal” chapter. So, it’s time to take a break; breaks can be a productivity investment. But, then that little voice starts whispering in your subconscious: the inevitable worry about the consistency of your own creativity - is your story worth reading?

As writers we are familiar with this kind of worries, and the reality is that the fear will never go away, although you can learn to manage it. And here we have for you some useful tips to edit your writing correctly and be more secure about it.

First of all, (and even if it sounds obvious) you need to read. You can’t just write and not re read you over and over again. The thing is that the more you read your own pieces, more mistakes you will correct. So, read your story at least 3 times. By doing this, you will become your own editor without losing your style. And when you think your story is perfect, read it one last time. We believe that it’s better to get tired of reading yourself, than later regret for some mistakes.

Second, read your story out loud. At least, one time you should do it aloud. According to Peter Elbow, in his University work about writing, “reading aloud intensifies our own words’ experience by increasing our bodily experience them: we get to feel them with our mouths and hear them in our ears and indeed experience them in our bodies--not just see with the eye and understand with the mind. Multiple channels of perception give us a much richer and stronger experience of language. When we revise, we come at our words from the outside, but reading aloud takes that outside perspective and puts it inside us”. When you read aloud is like you are reading to someone else, so you’ll have a better perception of the tone you’re using, where are the grammar pauses, or the strong parts; and what is the sensation you’re getting.

Third, give your text to someone else; yes, really. Choose someone wisely and ask him/her to read your story. Sometimes we are so into our writing and reading that we miss our own mistakes, or we write phrases that are not quite understandable. Is better that someone with fresh ideas and an outside view read your drafts. That’s the job of editors at the level of professional writing because you can’t be unbiased by your own text. Sometimes you’re not going to follow everything they say, but you can get some clues of what to improve, and when you need to put some more time.

And last, but not least, READ OTHER AUTHORS. Even if you are doing your own work, you should also be reading other books. Reading someone with a different perspective and style, even language, makes you to open your mind to new forms of storytelling - the art of saying the same things, in different ways, with different words, and styles. It’s a total art; and you will need that specially to describe your character’s unique behaviours and views.

As we always say, the better the reader, the better the writer. 

Feb. 6, 2017, 2:26 p.m. 0 Report Embed 7

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