I’m a decent editor. I can probably catch about 80% of your mistakes in one pass. What I don’t understand is how useless I tend to be when I edit my work. I mean, I could sit for days on a blog post, reading and re-reading until the cows come home and I would still miss a few mistakes until the post has been live for a week. It drives me crazy.
Now, I am not a perfectionist. But there is nothing worst than reading my own writing as if I was fall-down drunk when I wrote it. When I discovered Grammarly, I thought it was a gift from heaven. Because Grammarly, at least, catches all my stupid mistakes. But the problem with Grammarly is that it doesn’t help me construct my thoughts or ideas in a way that it would make sense. It doesn’t catch the proper progression in which my ideas should flow. So even with proper grammar tools and knowledge, it does not help me become a better writer.
How does one become a better writer?
I am not a writer by any stretch of yours and mine’s imagination. And I’m not going to list all the things you can do to better yourself. I do find that the more I read, the better I become at writing. Herein lies the rub. When I’m in the reading zone, plot bunnies sprout in my head like — well, like bunnies. The problem is, the plots I come up with are rewrites of the plot of the book I’ve recently read or I’m currently reading. I don’t seem to have a single original thought to my head. This is why I can’t write a full novel. Because the ideas that I come up with are nothing but recycled storylines that I’ve read or heard in my day-to-day living. But then again, most of the books that I’ve come across with usually have regurgitated plot arches. The difference between those published writers and I is that they have the courage. They have discipline. They can see through their story from beginning to end. While, I, on the other hand, am on a constant battle against myself.
One of these days, I will defeat my enemy. I will ignore the self-doubt that continually plagues me.
Until then, I’ll be the owner of a million plot bunnies clamouring inside my head.