Inspiration: Adaptation and Experimenting with Your Writing
I used to have the ideology that, in most cases, finding one method of getting my writing to “fit together” means finding a method that will always work. To me, success was forever. Now, I don’t want to sound too deep or philosophical for your taste, but while I was brainstorming for this post I thought of a comparison that really paints a picture, if you know what I mean.
Life is like an ever-changing puzzle. At first, the pieces fit, but any day the solution can just change, almost miraculously.
Not only does this apply to life as a whole, but smaller elements of it. Once again, writing fits into this quote perfectly. What your readers like, what you as the writer like, and so many other things factor into how an author’s writing changes over time.
Experimenting is a practice that I consider mandatory if you want to write outside of what is required in school or work. Style of writing, length of the piece, and genre are just a few things I consider before creating a new article for the ESSAYER. Some of these components, like genre, will create new components, which may also create more components, so on and so on. The level of depth experimentation adds to writing makes it sound frustrating and confusing to everyone, even me. But in the end, adaptation and change is what drives us as people, and as writers.
My English teacher has two posters on her classroom wall that read, “Never fall in love with your first draft,” and “A paper is never done. It is only due”. Essentially, an author can always make changes to their work to make it better. There will always be a mistake that should be fixed, but I think that should be seen as a virtue instead of a problem.
Using mistakes as a learning experience can give writers, like you and me, completely new and original ideas, as explained in the ESSAYER‘s Power of Mistakes article. Those new ideas, combined with some creativity, can lead to a truly unique final product. In my own words, it’s a connection between mistakes and progression that will always lead writing that is completely different from the rest of the crowd. My Writing Something New post further explains this, and therefore ends today’s minute of shameless self-promotion.
To sum it all up, an absence of change and exploration in how we, the people, tell stories would leave every new book, song, and movie just as bland as the last one. Even if others complain about how “everything is so derivative nowadays”, I believe that the ones who are optimistic enough to get their experiments out to the world are changing that.
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