8 Tips for Becoming a Fiction Writer Without A Writing Degree
Mark Twain, William Faulkner, Maya Angelou. What do these writers have in common? They never got a degree or got training in any sort of fiction writing.
Most of the renowned writers in the world have built their writing skills on their own. Indeed, there are many academic platforms such as essaywriterservice.com where specialists do have specific qualifications. That is, however, not the case for every writer in the world.
All in all, a passion for writing and a lot of curiosity is all you need to become a good writer. Regardless of your educational background, the tips you will find below can help you find motivation and direct you on the path of writing.
Write for Yourself First
Let’s put it more precisely. First, write for yourself, and only then, worry about the audience.
Many writers keep thinking about how the audience would perceive their work. Would the readers like it? Or would they criticize it too much? Would any publisher even read his manuscript? All these questions should be left for later.
While writing fiction, you are telling a certain story first. And at the beginning, there is only one person who even knows about it – you! Once you have completed the first draft, that is when you need to look at all other aspects there are to writing.
Stick to Your Own Style
Never compare your writing style to someone else’s. If you are concerned about the lack of your education, imitating another writer’s approach is not the right approach to choose from.
You do not know what their way of thinking is. Instead of mimicking someone else, present yourself. In every writing, you are reflecting your true self in your words. That is your unique voice and you should stick to it at all times.
You might have conjured up the story entirely on your own. But there are parts from the real world that might have led you to this particular setting. Even if you have already set the plot in your head, the world around you will have plenty of aspects to contribute to it.
The way one of your characters speaks, whatever the setting of a particular place, or how someone dresses – all these details you would be borrowing from the world around you. The power of observation could be the most effective skill any writer should master. No matter what kind of genre you are in, curiosity will prove to be an asset.
Find a World to Immerse Yourself In
When you are writing fiction, you need your readers to immerse themselves in the world you have built. They should be invested in the book to be ready to spend as many hours as necessary reading.
Writing is a task that goes on for days, weeks, and in many cases, even months. So pick a world, a setting that will hold your attention for this long while. It should keep you engaged and inspired. After all, if it can’t keep you interested, how will it keep the reader engaged?
Understand Your Characters
Fiction needs characters; they are the backbone of many writings. A strong character is not only a figment of the imagination. The presentation of any hero has to be as detailed as any real person. You need to invest in a backstory, personal traits, strengths, weaknesses, and every single aspect of their lives.
As a writer, you need to understand your characters to base their actions accordingly. Haven’t you seen people blame the writer for the character arc, as in how unlikely it is for a particular character to do something? The more you tell the audience about them, the more the readers will love the story.
Have an Ending Ready
The part of a story that will linger most in a reader’s mind is most likely the ending. That is what they will associate your writing with. You need to ensure that you give them something to remember.
Many a time, writers start with only a vague idea of the story. You might not know how the plot would turn out or how the character might feel halfway through the story.
Having the ending in mind will help you direct the story accordingly. The driving question will always be how you are going to get your plot to the planned finale?
Split the Text Into Acts
Writing an entire novel or a story might feel truly overwhelming. That is why experienced writers recommend breaking your story into acts.
The three-act structure is traditionally the most used one in storytelling. Act one will establish the inception of the story, and it’s setting. Act two builds up the plot and leads the reader to a conflict, or the midpoint. Act three begins with pre-climax and proceeds straight to the ending.
If you do not have any other structure planned, it would be good to follow this classic outline. You will be progressing consistently with this approach.
Read, Read and Read More
Last but not least, there is no better way to polish your untrained writing skills than reading. You have to browse all genres possible. You also have to take lessons from every piece you are reading. This will help you refine your own work. If you do not have enough time to read, you will not have the time to write as well.
As Maya Angelou said, “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” If there is a flame for writing inside you, do not let any wind dim it.
The planning might get you excited, but you need to begin the actual writing part before you get cold feet. Your first page might be dire, but you’ll still have something to work with. The most important thing is to dive in instead of finding excuses not to. Start writing today, and the rest will follow suit.
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
Elizabeth Shirley is a professional writer with 5 years of experience in the essay industry. She writes on different subjects, including history, linguistics, business, and politics. Her passion is journaling, but she also helps with essay support and is a big fan of her work.