I feel like what distinguishes me from other writers is my versatility and my ability to open myself to criticism.
One of the places where I began writing was DeviantArt, which before it went for-profit and there was mass administration unrest, drama, and legal issues, used to have a very small, close-knit and talented writing community. These were mostly college students or college graduates, some of whom actually worked in the field. I made an account there at DA when I was 15, and I wrote awful generic emo swill, the type of poetry found in bulk in high school lit magazines. I social networked with other inexperienced writers looking for comment circle jerks.
I wasn’t a good writer back then. But I was young and had the ability to recognize good writing. I would read the criticism that the talented writers would leave for each other, and I learned. I learned about the compositional elements that make “good” writing and how to utilize them.
So when I took a class in college called “Lit: Form and Meaning,” I was way ahead of the game, because I had been analyzing form, including poetry, for years longer than my peers had.
I can thank DA for my versatility as a writer. I can write very professional, persuasive, academic essays. I can write simple, short, blog entries designed to entertain those with literary ADD. But if I needed to, I could also write a decent poem in trochaic octameter. That’s something I don’t think many writers can do.
I can’t really identify my weaknesses as a writer as strongly as I can identify my strengths. I know that that my grammar isn’t always perfect. I can be too ambiguous when making arguments and unnecessarily equivocate at times. Like most “good” writers, I can have an ego, but I try to temper that by opening myself to comments and criticism.
What are your strengths and weaknesses as a writer?