I was on a mundane flight from Hyderabad to Delhi. It wasn’t one of those trips to Hyderabad but to Kochi. I had made two sane bookings for the two of us on the same flight and in the same name- my Type II genius, hence proved. To shut my mind off the drudged detour and the flying phobia I began working on my first and only manuscript. My co-passenger, a young man I didn’t care much to fit in the full eye frame, nudged me with a fire round on who I presumably was [my work]. “Are you a fashion Designer”- Of course, I didn’t look that chic, so that was a cheesy one. Another few not so flattering misfires and he chanced, “Are you a Writer?” Those words felt like deliciously thick hot chocolate fudge, a moment I could live in forever. And the realization around how I hungered for that author-feeling, whacked across my face.
A Writer- But what sort?
He meant a writer in a good way, but my cynicism couldn’t help hover around my self-profounded theories about the kinds of writers.
Pseudo Writers: Low on writing, high on the pseudo-writer clichéd look- black frames with zero power; a make-believe book lover who claims on having read all the classics; flaunting that MacBook where all great writing comes from; and sustaining a staple backdrop of books that were undisputedly bought by the weight.
Wanna-Be Writers: The self- obsessed writers with no published work, yet ‘writers’ not bloggers; over-utilizing the social media for giving themselves an image makeover; selling their miseries without talking about their under-achievements; or brand building through their self-publicized nil contributions to the literary world.
Over-Inspired Writers: The ‘literary thieves’ for their brazen writing style-copying and tweaking others’ content; brandishing their disrespect for the authors’ creative work by reproducing in their own names, and pretty much-doing anything and everything trying to sound like the world’s favorite authors.
7 Rules for the Real World of Writing
And now for the writer in a good way. My Seven Rules for anyone to get into the real world of writing:
- One, Blogging is not your online scribble journal. So, write with a purpose- open, examine and close a topic with a carry home message.
- Two, Guess what- No one is reading your blog to be told how smart and successful you are.
- Three, Copy-catting is not cool. I come from the formidable world of must-citations and plagiarism rules, where my first MBA Paper was not even read for nonconformity with the APA format. So, a Huh and Duh here.
- Four, the first step to being a good writer is appreciating good writing. It is notional and unrealistic to write well without reading well.
- Five, Good writing is all about having the reader relate to what lies inside them in denial. It’s about you giving a form to what they can only sense. Write about your innermost thoughts because that’s what the readers stow away the most and want to hear about the most.
- Six, Be original in your work. As you merrily make your way through the imitations of others’ work and writing style, you are leaving behind a digital footprint for the harsh laws of intellectual property rights that may catch up with you someday.
- And Seven, it takes some writing to be a writer, but it takes a lot of persistence, discipline, susceptibility, truthiness, and creativity to become an insanely good writer.