I am delighted to welcome Nikolas Baron along today to talk about some of the many lies whispered about writers!
Some lies of the writing world get as much circulation as The National Enquirer tabloid. These lies whisper doubts to young ones considering a writing career. These lies haunt men and women who are considering self-publishing their manuscript. These lies hurt anyone who listens to them. What is the antidote of a lie? One must learn the truth. Avoid being deceived by the following three misleading statements heard from both friend and foe.
“You either got it, or you don’t.”
I chose this falsehood to address first because it is often experienced very early in a writer’s career. As early as a child can write, he begins to process the comments of parents, teachers, and peers. If what he hears is largely positive, he may feel confident in his ability to express himself on paper. However, if he struggles with the task, he may feel that he is missing natural writing talent. Without a doubt, some persons are gifted in the craft. Nonetheless, some of what is missing in natural ability can be compensated for with education and hard work.
Have you ever heard of the neurosurgeon Ben Carson? According to Success.com, he felt stupid because he was often teased for his poor grades. When vision testing revealed he had an eyesight problem, he got glasses. After this simple adjustment, he became successful in his schoolwork. You should examine any weakness that seems to prevent you from having a meaningful writing career. If you are poor at grammar and spelling, use a program to help you with proofreading. Try out new speech-to-text software if typing slows down the creative process. Whatever the issue, a solution can be found among the many tools available to writers.
“Anyone can write.”
Yes, I just addressed the value of dedication and perseverance. Nevertheless, there is a balance that must be attained. Good writing is achieved only by natural talent; it is not completely the result of effort. Consider the motive of the speaker. Usually this statement is made to convince its listener of one particular fallacy: Writing requires little skill; one must simply put words on paper. Some consider writing to be an easy profession, the lazy way to make a living. How wrong they are! Writing takes energy, expertise, and creativity. Many have made valiant attempts to write the fabled Great American novel, only to realize that this ideal is more difficult to reach than they anticipated. Only those willing to put in the work will be successful.
“You have nothing interesting to write about…”
Why are there so many fiction books about characters at their job, going through divorces, or raising children? It is because everyday life is interesting. People relate with characters with similar lives. Mothers can identify with mothers; depressed souls relate to others experiencing sadness. Remember that fiction stories are not true. One can invent an alternative reality. One uses the imagination to create interesting plots. One can write about nonfictional subjects, such as sports, historical figures, or crafts. There is no limit.
Lies are as old as time. Lies have never been true and never will be! The truth is, writing is like any craft. It is a mix of skill, cultivated talent, and concentrated effort. Sure, anyone can write—anyone who studies the methods and applies what she learns. The whole world is full of interesting things. Discover what interests you, and write about it. I am passionate about truth; therefore I am using this article to expose these insidious writing lies. Do not be misled!
Nikolas discovered his love for the written word in Elementary School, where he started spending his afternoons sprawled across the living room floor devouring one Marc Brown childrens’ novel after the other and writing short stories about daring pirate adventures. After acquiring some experience in various marketing, business development, and hiring roles at internet startups in a few different countries, he decided to re-unite his professional life with his childhood passions by joining Grammarly’s marketing team in San Francisco. He has the pleasure of being tasked with talking to writers, bloggers, teachers, and others about how they use Grammarly’s online proofreading application to improve their writing. His free time is spent biking, travelling, and reading.