The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Developing Style

A recent note asked how one develops a personal writing style.  The most straightforward answer is by writing a million words.  However, those of  you looking for a shortcut might try the following. 

1) Choose two favorite writers with very different styles. Call them "A" and "B".
2) Write one story imitating writer "A"
3) Write a second story, imitating writer "B"
4) Write a third story, imitating the way "A" would imitate "B"
5) Write a fourth, imitating the way "B" would imitate "A."
By the time you're done, you'll be thoroughly confused.  You'll also be well on your way to your own voice.


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