Writing is a tough skill to master. After hearing Bill Simmons interview with the Huffington Post, I came to realize that excellence really only comes through practice.
I played baseball my entire childhood, and the common phrase (it’s common in any sport) was “practice makes perfect.” Well, I was a lazy little kid, so I never really did much of that “practicing” thing, yet I still expected perfection. Time and time again I would fail, either in the field or at the plate, but after each failure I realized that I could only really blame myself. I hadn’t put in enough time to expect excellence. And so it never came.
Writing is no different. With each sentence, each phrase, I expect excellence. I haven’t found it yet. But the more I write, the more I realize that I can only find that excellence through constant writing. Simmons mentions that writing every day is the best thing a writer can do for their career. I have to agree. I want to improve my writing, so I need to practice. And practice again. Write, and blog, and write, and blog. Then maybe I’ll see my writing start to resemble something I can be proud of.
Simmons inspired me to write every day, but he also showed me how to write. While I was listening to his interview, I just felt like I was reading one of his posts. His column personality is the same as his actual personality. This is a quality I shoot for in most of my writing: the ability to fully express my ideas and communicate with my audience in a conversational tone. When someone is reading my writing, I want them to feel like I’m in the room with them, just having a simple conversation. I want my writing to be influential, but not overbearingly so. I want my writing to be easy to read and easy to relate to. As I write more, I realize how hard it is to effectively communicate my ideas. The only way to do this is to write. And read. And write.