Writing a book isn’t a simple thing, despite the fact that reading and writing are not only common skills, but are often thought of as a necessity for everyday life; some level of literacy is required to get through school, to interact with people, to receive and hold a job, and other important activities.
While many people hold the ability to read and write functionally, those skills do not directly translate into the ones best suited for writing a book. However, there are many ways to hone your writing skills in order to shape them into ones you can use for writing novel length fiction or non-fiction. What many people fail to mention is what you need outside of a specific set of writing skills.
Personal traits play an important role in the process of writing a book. One of the most important qualities needed in order to write a book is some sort of passion. Whether it’s passion for the written word itself, for the ideas that are brought to life on the page, the topic in question, or the idea of creating is totally up to you.
It goes without saying that stories created by someone lacking passion may not feed a reader’s desire fueled by the story; while someone who holds passion for that work may be able to inspire something beyond comprehension within the mind and hearts of readers or other writers. A reader often craves the immersion and the intricate connections created inside a story they’ve fallen in love with; without passion, presenting a reader with a story they can fully enjoy, creating characters that will make them swoon or cry; building scenes and situations that are not only lively and believable, but beautiful within their own element; inspiring within their own reason, and visual beyond the words written on the page, is all that much harder.
Without passion, it’s all too easy to write words that make characters sound mechanical, create worlds and events that are forced and unrealistic; without passion, you may even look upon your work without the critical eye that all writers need, or too critically to retain the will to progress.
But reaching above passion, there is one trait in a writer’s best interest to have in order to succeed. While success itself is an arbitrary term, it holds no less truth for the one who feels success by writing three words on a page than someone who feels successful for publishing multiple books. The trait in question, of course, is hunger. A writer who feels the burning desire to write whenever they are not, always lusting to write more than they can, create more than they can think or feel, and take the words swirling within their mind and put them on paper; the grueling hunger to improve every aspect of their writing; the craft in which they practice, the mode in which they write. The overwhelming need to learn everything they can, to put everything toward trying to become the best they can be, even if they know that’s an impossible thought. That’s what it takes to write a book.
Truthfully, it doesn’t stop there; anyone who has at least tried to write a book can tell you that. Perseverance and determination are traits coveted by authors and aspiring writers of every kind; failure is guaranteed, and success is minimal; you must push on, move forward, and keep trying in order to keep success within sight.
Writing a book not only demands all of your spare time; a constant flow of blood, sweat, and tears, but also the remnants of your sanity; a book wants to test your ability to survive, your will to continue, and the strength you have left to fight. A book wants to bring you to the point of despair, to know that it will always be your mistress; in the end, no matter how much you have given and it has taken, you will always come back for more.
Sit down and write. Something so simple is what blocks many aspiring writers from finishing that book. At first writing isn’t about quality, but your effective use of the traits you have that push you to pursue writing. Use your passion to sit down and start typing, use your hunger to improve your skill, and use your desperation to show your book that it’s right; you are the writer, and it is your mistress. Write.