Why do you want to be a writer?

Is it for fame and fortune? If that’s the case you may be disappointed

As a prospective published author, you have to be sure of your aims. It’s not as easy as some people may suppose to write good stories and even harder to write great ones. Having a good imagination is certainly a start, but there’s more to it than that. Engaging readers is the hardest part of all. You need to be sure what kind of writer you want to be.

Take the term fiction, it covers a multitude of genres: Mystery, thriller, science fiction, fantasy and so on and on and on…

There seems to be a growing consensus today that grammar, spelling and punctuation are unimportant, that story is king. However, correct spelling etc, help the story obtain its crown. If you take the view that kind of thing can be sorted out later after you’ve submitted your work, then why bother in the first place? If you can’t be bothered to turn in a manuscript that’s as perfect as it can be, why should someone undertake the onerous task of wading through a mire of bad grammar to try and discern what the story is about?.

I freely admit I have problems with commas, which is why I asked a friend, who’s a librarian, to check out my punctuation before I submit some of my work for a competition later this month. The chances are I won’t get anywhere with it, but it won’t be because I didn’t try to submit the best possible piece of writing I’m capable of and that includes using capital letters, where appropriate, full stops, commas and question marks. A misplaced piece of punctuation can change the context of a story, thus negating the writer’s intention. If your spelling is weak, then use your spell check, or God forbid, a dictionary.

Story is king, but punctuation and grammar are the regalia by which it proclaims its monarchy.


4 Responses to “Why do you want to be a writer?”

  1. So very true. I would never hand any work of mine off to an editor without thoroughly grammar and spell-checking it by hand first!


    • Glad you agree. Alas, a lot of people get quite stroppy when things like this are pointed out. This, in my opinion, indicates they’re not prepared to learn their craft properly. Which begs the question why. Impatience? Laziness? Perhaps both. Whatever the reason they’re selling their readers short.


  2. Great blog honey.

    Why do I write? Because I have to, because I just can’t think of anything else I love to do more! 😀


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