Someone asked in the comments if I had any advice for aspiring writers. I guess that means they think I’m a pretty good writer. That’s cool.
So here are a few ideas that might help someone who is trying to get better at writing.
1. I have found it to be fairly true that writers/artists/etc. are their own worst critics. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Even if you think a piece of writing isn’t so great, share it anyway. Someone else might think it’s wonderful.
2. Accept criticism gracefully. If you don’t like what someone says about your writing, you can still thank them for offering their opinion.
3. A bad review is not the end of the world. Just because someone doesn’t like your story doesn’t mean it’s a bad story or you’re a bad writer. There’s a thing called personal preference, and everybody has their own. You can please some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.
4. Write, write, and write some more. The more you write, the better you’ll get at it. You know what they say about practice.
5. Mary Sue and Marty Stu – the perfect couple. If you are truly interested in improving your writing abilities, you have looked/asked for advice many places, and have probably heard/read something about Mary Sues/Marty Stus – those characters who are just practically perfect in every way. Some would advise you to avoid writing such characters at all costs because characters who are too perfect are annoying. I don’t agree. If you want to write practically perfect characters, go ahead. It’s your story, your world. Just because some people don’t like Mary Sues/Marty Stus, doesn’t mean they’re a bad thing. Mary Poppins is kind of a Mary Sue. The Lone Ranger is kind of a Marty Stu. And both of them are quite popular.
6. Challenge yourself. If you usually write happy stories, try writing a sad one. If you usually write short stories, try writing a long one. And so on. Step out of your box. Have someone give you a random topic and then write a story about it. (Some examples: “What happened when Sulu and Chekov went camping?”, “What if Tonto fell in love?”, “What happened on Chewbacca’s vacation?”)