What should I do if I want to be a great writer?

The short answer is: read and then write.

The long answer is:

1) Read the kind of thing you hope to write but read with the intent of figuring out what the author did that was so wonderful and how he/she did it.

2) Learn the craft of writing. Yes, writing is an art but it’s also a craft and any craft can be learned. There are classes, many free online and many more in person and there are books you can buy. Here’s why you learn the craft… because many people make a decent living as writers without having one iota of artistic writing talent. But they learned their craft and they work at honing it until it’s ever better and better and better.

3) Use paper and pencil or a computer or a piece of chalk and a rock or whatever method you choose to nail down what you want to write. A story. An article. A white paper. Whatever. Then look over what you did and change things until there’s a semblance of order to the whole thing.

4) Write the story or article. Then look at it and figure out what should be changed to make it easier to understand and to go rationally from beginning to end.

5) Make those changes.

6) Repeat numbers 4 and 5 until you are sick of the whole thing. Then put it aside for a while because, when you go back to it, it’ll seem fresh and much better than you ever thought possible.

7) Publish your masterpiece.

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