- Strive to use as few words as possible. This means that my strength is a style that is ‘punchy’, ‘strong’, and ‘to-the-point’. I am weaker at weaving subtlety, or being suggestive, or having ‘that one line’ which has the most impact.Every structure has magic in them. Every word, every scene, and every story is a structure. The fewer words there are while still maintaining the coherence of a scene, and hence that of the story, the more powerful and important each word is, and therefore the more magic there will be.
- Be as general as is possible. Do not be specific if you can help it. I am better at pointing someone in a direction rather than telling them what path to take
I could never get into Lord of the Rings because of how descriptive it is. I get bored of amazing descriptions of towns and cities or using a paragraph or two to describe how someone looks. I’m a firm believer in the idea of giving the reader the metaphorical sandpaper and letting them do what they want with it. My goal as a writer is to describe what the sandpaper is, how it looks like, how rough it is, and suggest where rubbing the sandpaper may be expedient.
- Use simple words as much as you can, unless a more complex word will better fit the scene. I am good at being easy to understand for each specific scene, but it also means that my descriptions can get repetitive over several stories.Everybody who is competent at a language will understand the use of simple words. It is easy to overlook these as the ‘basics’ required for communication, but following point 1, I believe these words have a magic in themselves. Therefore, I try to build as many scenes as I can using only simple words, unless I feel that I miss out an opportunity for alliteration, sibilance, and so on, or I just need to capture a more nuanced description. Even then, KISS priniciple. ‘Keep It Simple, Stupid.’
- Attempt to leave out names of people and use as few pronouns as can be helped. I could be wrong, but I feel that this allows for stronger empathy on part of the reader.Names have power, and pronouns themselves carry several connotations or ideas that may accidentally taint the story. A ‘Sophia’ in my mind carries different ideas than your ‘Sophia’, and to construct a new ‘Sophia’ would require injecting personality, which requires description, which takes up words. My goal in trying to allow people to feel emotions without judgement does not necessarily require such a step be taken, so I do not use names if I can help it. Items like ‘table’ or ‘pencil’ are fair game though. Got to refer to something.
Pronouns are tricky. They’re used to refer to people, which I need to do sometimes, but ‘he’ and ‘she’ not only describe gender, it also carries ideas of masculinity or femininity or ideas of how this or that person should be like. Given how complex people are, I try to avoid these or hide them as much as possible under other descriptions.
- Every person faces the same question, but answer differently. Similarly, every thought that I have had, someone else has thought already.This is less of writing style and more of the reason why I write. When a question is being answered, I strive to show as many faces and answers to it while it remains in the background. This question cannot come to the fore, because then it reduces its impact. Similarly, every kind of character and scene that I have thought of, someone else has already thought of. As such, I strive to explore the toolbox and draw the magic out of each tool, rather than use them myself. I may do this in the near future though.