Writing is artistic and has its rules. It doesn’t matter what genre you write in – fiction or non-fiction doesn’t come into play here – because every writer and author needs these 5 top essential writing skills.
Writing is a way to tell a story in written form to an audience who visualize and recreate your words in their minds as they read and immerse themselves in your literary piece.
It’s easy to come up with an amazing story, rich plotlines to wow your audience, and great story twists that would have a staggering ending and leave your audience exhausted with varying levels of emotional upheaval but if you have a poor delivery of this story, then all your hard work goes up in smoke.
Note that, these writing skills are nurtured and groomed over time authors master their usage professionally to suit their style of writing. So, take heed not to rush the process and give yourself time to come into skills by practicing and writing often.
The top 5 Essential Writing Skills are:
1. Good Communication Skills.
The obvious truth is, that you write how you speak. If your diction is poor and crass, so will your writing.
First, as an aspiring author, you need to intentionally polish your diction before venturing into writing your story. You could do this by addressing others the way you’d like your stories to resonate.
There is an underlying fact here that Good communication skills go in hand with Good Writing Skills because these are the two most common soft skills budding authors ought to have first.
2. Good Writing Skills
This skill will always be a work in progress because it evolves as you evolve.
Writing professionally takes a lot of gut, therefore, it is essential to grow into your writing style and distinguish yourself from others in the same genre as you. Finding your writing style is tricky but with time, practice and patience, you will grow into it and become more confident, distinguishable, and proud of your literary pieces.
This will always be an ever-changing skill because it evolves every day.
New words are pushed out every minute and some words take a different meaning with time or are scrapped entirely from the writing world and even the dictionary. That’s why we have editions.
Don’t panic yet, this can be taken care of. All you should do is consciously read anything and everything you come across, from scrappy newspapers to the latest published books and everything in between, including scrawled handwriting on a smudgy wall – if it catches your interest.
This way it becomes easy to grow your vocabulary of words and build your dictionary of words to use in your literary pieces.
4. Creative Thinking
This is where it gets interesting.
Writing involves a lot of creative thinking and imagination – for fiction writers – without which the entire essence of storytelling is lost. Readers want to be taken beyond the physical to bask in the magical world with you.
Even when writing non-fiction – depiction of real-life events in your words – it is paramount to be creative in relating those events or your readers will lose interest from the get-go.
Every artist is different in their way, with different levels of creative thinking capacity and risk appetite when it comes to writing. While you might be willing to burst down the conventional walls in your literary pieces, some others might not be comfortable with that.
In essence, when you write, be creative, think outside the box but within realistic norms and be yourself.
Give your story the heart it deserves.
There is no new story out there, just an old one written in a better, more satisfying way.
5. Critical Thinking
There are intense levels to this skill.
Critical thinking comes first before every other skill but is the hardest to master. It takes a lot to put your story out there and this skill makes all the difference in your writing and literary piece.
Every story must pass through the thinking stage, then come to the research, the plot, the timeline, the twist, the language style, world-building, character formation, story construction, and a lot of other things before you pen down your very first word.
Without critical thinking, your story might be headed for the drainpipe because it’s going to lack a lot and slack in a lot of places. It might make your story look drab, dry, and uninteresting even with the brightest ideas and killer twists.
The best way to grow your critical thinking skills is to begin small. Start with stories, easy plotlines, and relatable storylines, and build your way up from there.
Don’t force it because it’s better to grow into it.
These 5 top essential writing skills are of importance to you if your goal is set on becoming a thriving author in the industry and your chosen genre. Take it slow, read more, write more, and above all stay consistent.
Consistent with practice begets excellence.