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How to become a great writer

1 winter canal image

I have read a lot of the work of great writers. Many of my friends are writers and bloggers. I do read a lot of rubbish, that is just boring and you scan through it, without really reading it. Then there are those snippets that are a joy to read.

The odd funny comments on the internet, in newspapers or magazines illustrate life’s ironies and comment on how crazy it all is. They amuse us. Is it any more of an achievement to write a 200,000 word masterpiece, than to write a 20 word comment that amuses thousands, if not millions? Those odd funny comments sometimes come easily, inspired by a recent event, but they tend to be written by the same people day after day. Why do some people find it easy to come out with amusing comments? Are they amusing by nature?

Dickens used great names in his novels, he seemed fascinated by them. Names like Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and Mr Bumble. The list of Dickensian characters is fascinating in itself. Some of those names have entered into the English language. Who is not familiar with the term Scrooge to describe a person who is miserly? You need to be fascinated by names and words to become a great writer.

I looked up a word that I keep hearing yesterday. ‘Mindfulness’, it made no sense to me. It seems it’s use has become popular because of a translation from Chinese that didn’t quite work out. It seems it means becoming more aware. I think…

My picture today is of a canal. I have become more ‘aware’ since I took up photography. I was very aware of the different colours when I took that photo and of the tree silhouetted against the sky.  Is that mindfulness? I used to ride my bike down the canal tow paths when I was a teenager. That takes some skill. Especially if you can’t swim, there is no room for error. I learnt to ride a bike by constantly practising, through repetition. Wobbling at first and maybe falling off. Eventually I was confident enough to take to the roads and later, so confident I could ride down canal tow paths without fear of going in the water. I even rode across a narrow wooden plank that spanned the canal.

The secret of becoming a great writer? Practise! Start off wobbly. Write every day. Become fascinated by words. Become aware of the world you live in. Most of all write and keep on writing until it becomes so natural it feels just like riding a bike.

You are welcome to comment; even a wobbly comment. You can also follow me on Twitter and tweet amusing comments.

One Response

  1. Pingback: The weekend review | Mike10613's Blog

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