On improvement

As a writer, how well you pick up on things as you write is critical to making sure a piece reads well and makes sense. The better you are at it, the better the story will be.

What that means is how well a writer can distill ideas into maintaining a cohesive narrative whole and sustaining how it unfolds within a set amount of space. It’s the goal of any writerly practice. In fact, practice makes perfect.

How a writer can improve themselves is writing each day and to deadline. Hell’s bells, Monday to Friday I’m either writing content for work, reading 10-20k words of text for research, reading a script for a “book club” where we analyse screenplays or learning from something to take mind of all that, which currently goes between Persona 5 and Mindhunter. And writing tulpas.

With the screenplay I’m writing, I aimed it to be an action-thriller, but instead it took on life as a disaster movie with a romance drama inside of it. A picaresque hero caught between love, betrayal and death from above. It’s crystallising, but into what, I’m not sure of yet. I do know it’s heading in the right direction, though. The fact that I’ve picked up on that, in terms of its moving parts, is something I’m patting myself on the back about because writing a disaster movie is out of my comfort zone. Hopefully I can do it justice.

So, improvement is a good thing if you can measure it. For that, you just need to keep writing and then looking to see what you’re doing better now than back then.

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