13 January 2016 - 5:49 pm

Random Writing Tip #13: Vacuums Suck

Don't be this guy. (Picture by JD Hancock, via Flickr)

Don’t be this guy.
(Picture by JD Hancock, via Flickr)

A lot of writing is done as a solitary activity. We write, we rewrite, we wrestle to make it the story we want it to be. But we can’t do all of it alone, shut away from the world.

Writing in a vacuum isn’t good for the writer or the writing.

We should also look outwards and get input from external sources. It could be other people, or other works of fiction, or real-life stories. We should gain context and an understanding of how our work fits into the world.

We should also reach out and get feedback on our work from external parties. Take in the fresh perspectives of others on the story and on our writing. We mix up this information with everything we’ve come to know, add to it the context we understand, and aim it towards the goal we’re striving for with the story.

And we learn. We improve. We hone our skills as a writer and we polish our stories with this new information.

By stretching out, we expand our vision and experience, and we enrich our writing.

So don’t write in a vacuum. Surface once in a while, let other things fill your eyes and ears, and bring it back to improve your story. You’ll be better for it.

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