My Writing Style

I just read a great article by Kimberly Lang in the May 2012 issue of Romance Writers Report . Entitled “What’s Your Style?” it addresses the connection between learning styles and writing styles. As a former educator, I know the importance of considering all learning styles when developing lesson plans and facilitating instruction, but I hadn’t considered my learning style and its connection to my writing style. What Lang says makes perfect sense, and relieves me of the pressure (self-imposed) of trying to imitate the process of other writers.  As an auditory learner, I like to write in silence or with instrumental music only.  If I listen to music with lyrics, it won’t be long before I’m using the stapler as a microphone and singing lead vocals with the band. I can listen to instrumental because THERE ARE NO WORDS. And I admit it, I am A.D.D. My son and a friend both gave me the same t-shirt that says “I’m A.D.D. but no one understands…oh look – a chicken”.  So true, so true.  And my son-in-law often buys me “chicken” themed items just as a reminder.
And yes, I walk around the house muttering to myself running plot lines or dialogue.  When walking the beach with my husband Rich, I run plot lines and potential conflict by him because I am also an extrovert and that’s how I process. God bless his patience!
As Lang suggests, my novels are dialogue heavy. While I’m writing, my characters begin to talk to each other and I simply record what they say.  More than once I have reread passages to find I don’t remember thinking up those words at all! Plot development via dialogue is my favorite, which is why I love Shakespeare so much.  Exposition is the most difficult part of a book for me because I think, “Okay, let’s get on with it.” When my characters begin verbal sparring, I love it! And one of my favorite lines in Love’s Destiny is when Emily says to Jonathon, “You make love to me with your words.”
Discussing ideas with friends who read drafts and help with revision is heaven for me.  I get to talk about my writing, and what writer doesn’t love that?  But talking scenes through and getting feedback is more helpful for me than creating a storyboard, which visual writers love.  And I read my draft aloud to myself which is incredibly helpful and leads to much of my revision.
Lang offers “tips and tricks” for each learning style and encourages writers to stretch beyond their comfort levels and try a strategy compatible with a different learning style.  I have to admit that color-coding plot notes is tempting. I think I’ll go find those markers I stashed away.

2 thoughts on “My Writing Style

  1. I read the same piece and loved it. I, too, talk to my characters, listen to them talk to each other and am much better at dialog than description.

    All those teachers in grade school who gave me A+ for my reading and writing but black marks for talking too much had no idea I was just writing my next story.

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