On Writing: Finding Your Niche and Perfecting Your Craft

By: Brooke Lark on Unsplash.com

“Experimenting with different writing styles, approaches, and genres has allowed me to feel as though I’m growing as a writer. Though, throughout each and every change I find that there is always one genre, one style of writing that draws me back in – leaving me ready to write no matter the circumstance. I remember just a few years ago, when I was still trying to find my voice, when I was still trying to understand who I wanted to be and what I wanted to convey as a writer, and it wasn’t until I allowed my work to flow naturally that I’ve felt like I found it. The best writing is the kind that doesn’t feel forced. I wanted to simply wake up early, sit down at my desk, and just – begin. Lately, that is exactly what I’ve been doing and while I still try to experiment with my writing as much as possible, I know the writing style and genre that will never fail to excite me, I’ve found my niche.”

I started out wanting to write romance, that was the genre that had seemed to excite me in my teens, but it wasn’t until I started making my writing a part of my daily routine that I realized that just didn’t seem like the right fit – Mystery/Thriller/Horror would be the way to go. I found so much more pleasure writing in those genres than I could’ve ever imagined, and every time I found myself stuck, unable to get writing, I’d turn to that stream of ideas to help me out of the writer’s block-sized hole I’d dug myself into. I’m sure there will always be room to try new things, but I had decided to give more of my attention to what I would like to read versus what may be the current trend right now. I stuck to the genres that made me the happiest, and I still think this is one of the most fulfilling things we can do as writers.

Write what makes you happy, that is all. I’ve been telling myself this for quite some time, especially when none of the people around me read the kind of stories I like writing. I feel my most comfortable, and most like myself when I’m able to write stories that keep me on my toes, that keep me writing until its very end, and that’s important. I’ve made such a big change in my everyday routine to incorporate my writing as an integral part of my life, because it allows me to express myself, to let my creativity run wild, and I knew I would never want to lose it. Mystery/Thriller/Horror are genres that keep me guessing, that truly make me feel like I’m creating incredible art (no kidding, it feels great, even if it may not be my best), and that feeling alone keeps me motivated to write more, to write more frequently, and to continue to challenge myself.

Instead of me trying to write every possible genre (when I know there are some I don’t even really like), I’ve been trying to instead incorporate factors of those genres that I do like, into a project that feels complex, exciting, and that may very well be a good read. It’s certainly important to challenge yourself, but it doesn’t hurt to settle on a genre or writing style that seems to come naturally to you. Hone in on your strengths, you have so much more of them than you may even realize.

As I sit back, still trying to get through the most of my novel edits, I’ve been preoccupying myself writing short stories in these genres, feeling that fulfillment when I reach the end of each one. It really has been pushing me to get the editing done, and this has really made a difference in how productive I’ve been as of late. This is because I know that if whatever I’m working on has seemed to make me lose interest temporarily (especially if I’ve been editing for hours), I know I can turn to let my creativity flow freely, even if it’s just for a little while.

Finding your writing niche might be exactly what you need to stay working, it certainly was for me. Nothing makes writing easier than having the will, motivation, and dedication to getting a piece done, and this can very well stem from the excitement to write anew, in a genre or writing style that makes you feel like yourself. Take some time, explore a few different approaches, until something just fits. I always turn to writing a new short piece whenever my creativity has begun to dwindle, and it really does keep me afloat, allowing me to truly practice writing each and every day.

I hope you all enjoyed this blog post and I’d love to hear what your preferred genre of writing or reading is in the comments below!

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