1. Mans

    Mans Contributor Contributor

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    Do you compare your writings with other writers often ?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Mans, Feb 21, 2014.

    I even can question, do you compare yourself with the popular novelist like Dante, Anton Chekhov, Alfred Hitchcock, and similar? Do you sometimes try to follow their writing style?
     
  2. shadowwalker

    shadowwalker Contributor Contributor

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    I don't compare myself to anyone - futile exercise. I read so many different novelists, it would be impossible to determine whose (if anyone's) style I prefer, let alone would want to follow. I have my own style, and I'm perfectly happy with that.
     
  3. jazzabel

    jazzabel Contributor Contributor

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    I compare my writing to the professional standard all the time, not in terms of style, but in terms of interestingness and readability. There's a definite 'zone' where the reader loses himself. He stops being aware that he is reading and he starts experiencing. He laughs when he is supposed to, tears up when he is meant to, he experiences all the emotions alongside with the characters and he doesn't catch his breath until the writer decides to give him a break. This perfect flow of narrative is what separates great writers from the rest. Look at all of them and you'll see them demonstrate this ability effortlessly. This is what I'm always aiming for.

    Also, I attempt to emulate certain skills when I get stuck. For example, I have a scene where two detectives are riding in a car together. I want them to reveal a bit about themselves through their interaction with each other. But it's an early scene in my book, and I still haven't gotten them used to each other. So I have trouble writing it. But then I remember a similar scene in one of my favourite crime novels, and I look at it for ideas on how to progress through that scene. What I end up with is still in my voice, but I 'borrowed' from a famous writer. I have definite 'go-to' writers and books depending what I'm struggling with and as I become more experienced, I need to resort to borrowing ideas and techniques less and less. But from what I heard, this never really stops, even (and especially) famous writers are constantly on a lookout for fresh ideas and perspectives and they get inspired by others all the time too.
     
  4. Lemex

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    I do, but only writers of this regular world. Don't compare yourself to Dante, for example, it's just not worth it. Dante and Milton and Virgil, they are writers in the canon for a reason.
     
  5. thirdwind

    thirdwind Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Dante and Chekhov weren't novelists. Well, Chekhov wrote 1 novel, but I don't consider him to be a novelist.

    I do compare my writing to that of other novelists, if only for the sake of competition and motivation. ;)
     
  6. Bryan Romer

    Bryan Romer Contributor Contributor

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    No, I don't think valid comparison is possible in any useful manner. First of all, self assessment, especially as a writer is a very dubious exercise.
     
  7. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    in answer to both questions:

    not often... not ever...
     

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