One of the hardest things for me to learn as a writer (and something that I’m still learning) is to know and accept my writing style. I have always admired writers that use big words and have powerful and well thought out sentences. I’d tell myself these are the writers who readers trust and believe. Then I admired writers that were funny and could tell jokes while still delivering an important message. These were the writers, I’d tell myself, that knew how to captivate an audience. And I thought, to be a good writer, I had to write this way too.
So I’d try. But it was hard. It felt forced. My natural writing is clear and simple. I tend to be more informative and to the point than flowery or funny. I finally learned that there is nothing wrong with that. So I’m learning to stop trying to be somebody I’m not.
I’m not trying to say that I’ve never mimicked another author or patterned my writing in a similar fashion to something I’ve read. We learn from what we read. We learn by example. There are bits and pieces of other writers that have found their way into my writing style. There are some writing devices I try to emulate. But there are some methods of writing that I really enjoy reading but cannot seem to apply to my own writing. At the end of the day, it is okay if my writing is a mix of what I have learned from others as long as it works for me and becomes my own. I need to have my own style. Every writer is unique and every voice is different. I don’t need to write like others. They are already doing that. I need to write like me.
I need to embrace my true identity as a writer.
Know Your Writing Style: Embrace Your True Writer Identity
Why You Need to Find Your Writing Style
Once you identify what style of writing comes easiest for you, don’t be ashamed of it. Embrace it. If you realize you are trying to write like your favorite author and it’s not working, stop. If you try to write in a style that isn’t true to yourself, you will never reach your potential as a writer. Your writing will fail. You can’t force yourself to be something you are not.
How to Find Your Writing Style
Think about who you are. Are you funny? Serious? Have you studied literary devices and developed a big vocabulary? How do you talk when you are with your closest friends? Answering these questions will help you discover your writing style because your writing style should reflect who you are as a person.
Another helpful thing to do is look at writing you have done when you weren’t trying to write a certain way. Maybe a journal or a letter to someone. Looking at how you write when you don’t feel pressure will help you find your writing style.
You can also do a brain dump activity. Pick a topic and start writing. Don’t worry about anything except trying to write like yourself. Examine the writing and see if you can tell what kind of writer you are.
Staying True to Your Writing Style
It’s hard to stay true to something you don’t know about. But once you identify your writing style it will be so much easier to stay true to it. If you find yourself trying to be funny or serious or trying to use literary constructions that you wouldn’t normally use, knowing your writing style will help you recognize that you don’t have to write that way. If you find yourself struggling to write at all, don’t forget to ask yourself if it may be because you are trying to write like someone else instead of yourself.
What is your writing style and how do you stay true to it?