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Needed to Write a Novel: Talent or Skill?

April 10, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 91

..."talent" is what people say you have after you have worked like h--- for years to improve yourself." - Jack Bickham

My fellow Okie, and master storyteller, the late Jack Bickham clearly sliced it and diced it with this comment!

As a long-time writing instructor, editor, and writer's conference speaker, I often heard murmur of voices wondering, "Do I have the talent to write?"

Wrong question. Always and forever - wrong question.

Want to know the right question? Are you ready for this?

Right question:

"I'm sure I have the basic talent to write. However, do I have the fortitude, determination, stick-to-itiveness, will power, and sheer unadulterated passion to work hard enough and to apply myself to study and practice to become the best novelist I can possibly be?"

Now that is a question that is placed in the correct perspective.

During the nine or so years that I was an instructor on staff for an international correspondence writing school, I crossed paths with every personality type imaginable. My students were from all walks of life, from all parts of the US and a few from overseas.

I watched with increased fascination at how many extremely talented individuals had no respect whatsoever for their gifts and talents in writing. It was as though they knew they were good, and that gave them a right to be flippant and nonchalant with their talents.

On the other hand, there were those humble folk who, at first glance, appeared to have a mere modicum of natural writing talent. But they hung on to every critique that was given them like a drowning man in a stormy sea clings to a life saver. They worked hard, they studied, the incorporated suggested edits and changes. The growth in their skills was clearly evident from one lesson assignment to the next.

Sometimes it made me sit back and just shake my head in wonder.

How much weight did the basic natural talent have in these situations? The talent was simply the starting point; the cornerstone upon which the building was then erected.

If you are overly concerned about whether or not you do indeed have any writing talent, my suggestion is to stop wasting time looking in that direction.

Instead, invest that time to get busy and give your all to enhance the talents you do have and add to your novel-writing skills on a daily basis.

Then you will be a novelist of the highest caliber.

Are you an aspiring novel writer? Are you bogged down in the creation of your novel? Are you plagued with doubts and apprehension regarding your fiction and story-telling skills? Let veteran, published author, Norma Jean Lutz help you enhance your knowledge and appreciation of novel writing. Author of over 50 published books as well as hundreds of articles and short stories, Norma Jean is a popular workshop and writer conference instructor. Through her company, "Be A Novelist," she shares tips, concepts, and intricate writing techniques right here: http://beanovelist.com. And on her blog site: https://beanovelist.wordpress.com/ As Norma Jean says, "I love to teach writing almost as much as I love to write!"

Source: EzineArticles
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