Aspiring to be great

Professional writers impress me.  In any discipline, you need to have others to aspire to be, and as far as writing goes, the best writers are just too good.  They know exactly how to place their words and phrases to get the most meaning out of their writing.  Every time I write, I try to write as a professional (Bill Simmons is really the guy I look up to), but my words never seem right.  I can’t describe things the way I want to.  My metaphors just aren’t up to par.

In order to be a good writer, I need to become more creative.  This falls in line with improving my metaphors.  Describing my ideas appropriately takes creativity, and I feel like I lack it.  I don’t know if I have what it takes to be the quality of writer Bill Simmons, but I guess I can try.

2 thoughts to “Aspiring to be great”

  1. Honestly, I felt the exact same way towards the beginning of the year. When we were given the task of finding a writer that we hope to someday emulate and then blog about them, I was flooded with thoughts of jealousy. These people were humans just like me, yet their composition and writing style was lightyears away from mine.

    As the year has gone on, and I have done more and more self reflection, I think that there are a couple of ways to alleviate that anxiety, at least they worked for me. First, and this is extremely tough, we must remember that these people are indeed professionals, and may have spent more time writing and rewriting than the time I have been on earth. That dumb saying that I am sure you heard a million times growing up, practice makes perfect most definitely applies here. The good news is, through this course we are receiving a lot of practice. Yet, when we are so close, and constantly engaged with our writing it is hard to see substantive improvements in our style. I would be willing to bet, though, that after you write your first paper next semester, you will be surprised at the strides you have made. I sure as hell hope this applies to me as well, if not I’m done with writing, kidding obviously.

    The only other thing that I would like to say is that you probably have a unique writing style which others would be envious of, or would struggle to emulate. Everyone has their own strengths, and while many of them can be acquired through practice, some may never be achieved. For me at least, I can always tell when people are trying too hard to write in someone else’s style, so I say do you and you’ll be great.

  2. Great questions, Stephen (way to reflect!!!), and great response, Skylar (alley-oop on the reflect!!!). Stephen, have you ever heard of the book _Metaphors We Live By?_ It’s a fairly complicated theory of metaphor book by a famous pair of linguists (Mark Johnson and George Lakoff), but it has TOTALLY reshaped the way I think about metaphor, and I think it’s improved my writing (and analytical reading skills) by leaps and bounds. Might be worth checking out–you can handle it!

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