Writers require a number of skills to enable them to do their best work. This is the fourth in a series titled, Essential Writer Skills that will focus on the specialized abilities writers should develop, and some techniques to hone these skills.
An important skill for a writer to possess is the ability to analyze their own work, and the work of others. The ability to think critically about other writing; to analyze what it is you like, and what you don’t like as both a reader and a writer, is essential in creating an informed opinion. This informed opinion enables writers to emulate those styles, habits and processes that work for them, and apply them to their own work.
For me, the best way to analyze my own work, is to take some time away from it. I like to leave at least two weeks between finishing a draft, and my first round of editing. During those two weeks (or more!), I like to focus on another project entirely, so that I really am taking my mental attention away from the work I’ve just completed. Then, when I return to my writing, I feel like I have fresh eyes; I’ve gained some perspective, and I can come at my work again from a new perspective.
How else might analysis be an essential skill for a writer? Tell me in the comments below!
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