Thursday, 22 December 2011

The Qualities of a Good Writer - 3 Communications Habits a Good Writer Needs

In Ireland there is a block of bluestone called Cloch na Blarnan. Built into the battlements of a castle in County Cork, it is said to bestow the blessings of the fair folk on any who brave the climb and the bending over the parapet's edge. A kiss on this stolen piece of the Wailing Wall, or perhaps in truth a fragment of the Lia Fáil, is sure to grant the seeker the gift of a golden tongue.
Or at least turn him into a mildly good writer. If a mere kiss of the Blarney stone can cause a person to wax eloquent, a good writer must have swallowed a piece whole!
- For the first and foremost of the communications habits a good writer must have is a love of words. A writer must love the forming of them and the sounding of them and the use of them and the ideas that they convey. A writer must love their rhythm and their song. And the poetry they make as he's waxes lyrical. Whether silently whispered or shouted above the battle's din. A love of words for their own sake. A writer's first love must be words for they are the blocks and mortar of his castles.
But the gift of the gab is not enough to make a person a good writer.
- There must also be a need to communicate. A need to share ideas, and dreams and thoughts and imaginations. This need to communicate and share is the drive behind the hours spent staring at an empty computer screen. The heartache of the wrong word and the sentence that just won't come must be overcome. A good writer is driven to communicate and it is this drive that allows them to be more than a merely talented writer.
- And finally, a good writer must be driven to expound on their ideas. An actor, a singer, a bard -- all are driven by the same need to communicate. But none are faced with the sheer egotism of the writer. They all have an audience in front of them. Even a modern movie actor has a crew that reacts to Hamlet's cries or Juliet's tears. But a writer speaks their thoughts to a blank screen. One way. Never truly knowing the audience reaction. And to talk and talk and talk takes a drive, a need to expound.

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