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Help/Support ► Writing Trouble



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Delsan

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I'm not sure if you would've guessed, but I've been an aspiring writer since what, eight years old? Since then, I've written a lot of stories (usually 30-50 pages). The only problem I have is that I normally don't finish them...as in I get bored after a while and come up with another idea. This happens with almost every story because as an avid reader, I normally question how my writing compares to other authors'. When I do this, I sometimes quit writing the stories altogether. I know I shouldn't do this, but I can't help it for some reason. And I keep reading because, well, I like to, and I usually adopt another author's writing style as a way to practice my own writing.

I'm making this thread because I know there are a lot of talented writers on this site, and I'm sure at least some of you experienced this, right? If not, advice on how I should overcome this problem is welcomed. I want to be an author when I get older, and I can't let this mar my chance of actually getting published. I want to actually finish something for once.
 

DerringerZONE!

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I'm an avid reader too and yeah, I know what you mean. There was a time when I bought piles of books and read on a daily basis that when I started writing again, I felt like my writing sucked so bad I couldn't even stomach to read my own RP post. I guess it builds up a complex in the long run, but writing to me just spurs out of nowhere... and I often find myself stuck when I have a lot of ideas coming to me, I don't even know where to begin.

When that happens though, I stop and look for other stuff to do and go back at it later on when I've cleared my head. Seems to work for me.
 

Ehres

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Not everything has to be finished. Hell, for the past 12 years I've written thousands of stories and not one of them was ever finished. Why? Because I felt as if I reached a certain point, did all the cool things I thought of in my mind, and then had nothing else to add. I burned it out; and things became stagnant. You need to learn to pace yourself. Don't do too much writing or else you'll wear yourself out. Plan ahead; come up with plots, characters, themes, all that juicy stuff and explore that first before you even think about putting pen to paper. Set out a chapter scheme: What will happen in each chapter, scenes, character introductions, etcetera. Key points. You need something to drive towards, not just random spurts of writing something down, getting bored because it's going nowhere because you have no idea where it's going, and then throwing it aside.
 

Annoyance

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I agree with Ehres. It's good to set goals for yourself, to have an outline of what is to come, ideas of what could happen. That way if you get distracted you can get back to it and everything's okay.
 

D.D.D

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I see we have the same exact problem.
You said you're an avid reader, and that's a very good thing despite the fact that it makes you compare your work to others. From looking up on ways to help break writer's block online, I've found many sites repeating that a good way to get better at writing is to read a LOT.

But I don't. I gave up on reading fiction besides stuff for school, because I had your same problem. I'd compare myself to the professional writer, get mad, and either A. Give up writing for a while in anger, or B. Redo an entire story because I felt mine paled in comparison to the professional writer's.

IDK if you'd be willing to give up most fiction reading, but that's what I had to do. Now I can actually write without comparing constantly.

If you're not wanting to give up a lot of reading like I did, I'd say definitely keep reading and then, when comparing yourself to the professional book, ask, "What do I like so much about this novel?". Once you get your answer, apply it to your own work.
 

Forever Atlas

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One thing that I always used to do when writing was make sure I already knew the ending before I started. It's a goal to meet. Of course this could always change and evolve as you write your stories but always have a point to meet.

At the same time, it's alright if you don't finish stories, I think all writers have those incomplete ones. However, if you are serious about completing one, then stick to it and even when you reach blocks, don't give up. There are always ways to get around them.
 

Ordeith

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When I chatted with him, Broadway playwright Stephen Currens gave me this advice:

"For first drafts, it doesn't need to be good; it needs to be finished."

I still have the exact same problem that you have, but Mr. Currens's advice has given me a clear, successful direction for writing. Even if your ending doesn't accomplish much, it provides a base that can be tweaked until you're satisfied. Without an ending, a story tends to flop about trying to finish itself in one swoop -- or, at least, that's what mine do.
 
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