Thursday, December 15, 2011

What are your strengths?

I know we all point out our weaknesses. I have a lot. My worst thing I think, is world building. I can write the story out, but it takes me a long time to make my world believable.

There are also those pesky words I use over and over and over. My favorites?

*Just
*Even
*Stared
*Was

It never fails. I have to go in and change a ton of them after every first draft. But that's what first drafts are for, right? :)
Anyway, I've been thinking about what I'm good at. Honestly, I don't really know. I'm so critical about my own writing that I always point out my weaknesses. I have a hard time seeing my strengths.

Does anyone else have this problem? I'm sure we all do.

So, today, I want everyone to write one thing they know they're good at in the comments. One thing about your writing that you know you ROCK at.

I'll start, even though I really have a hard time with this. I've been told I'm great at chapter endings. One of my crit partners said I was the Chapter Ending Champ. lol :) Made me feel good about myself! :) So, every time I'm feeling down on my writing, I think of that compliment. Even though it's just one thing someone said, it makes me feel better about myself.

So, my friends. What are you great at? We all need a little pick-me-up every once in a while. :)

27 comments:

Melanie Fowler said...

You're in luck. I think world building is awesome!!!

J. A. Bennett said...

I totally use the same words over and over, I can't help it! I need to work on my chapter endings, and my book ending for that matter! But someone once told me I'm good at the details, although I think sometimes I over complicate things. Wow it's hard to just be happy about a strength. I need to work on that!

Jenny S. Morris said...

It is really hard to compliment ourselves. I had a CP say the same thing about my chapter endings. That they are always so strong. I found myself writing a chapter ending the other day and I wondered if it was strong enough because of her comment.

S.P. Bowers said...

My characters tend to think and wonder a lot. I have deleted so many of those words.

I have been told several times that my dialogue is good. This confuses me. I have often considered trying to write a book with no dialogue because I am just that scared of it.

Nick Wilford said...

Good question to ask, Chantele. I think we probably all dwell too much on our weaknesses. BTW, I think you can be forgiven over-using "was", especially if you're writing in past tense!

I have no idea whether anything I write is any good, and am reliant on others to tell me. I have had positive feedback on a short story site I used to be part of (well, still am, but haven't posted anything for a while) and on the letters page of a magazine. From these I have gleaned that I am good at characterisation and portraying someone's inner world. I have no idea how, though!

Cynthia Lee said...

I don't have much of a problem with voice, for some reason. It comes naturally. Everything else, though. I have to work at that.

Christine Rains said...

Just is my most used word too. I don't even notice it until it's pointed out to me. Endings are my weakness. I always hate ending a story. It's hard to think of my strengths. Characterization? My characters always make an impact.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

"Was" used to be my bane.
I think I'm good at characterization. I spend so much time before writing a story designing my character and making him or her three dimensional.

Nicole said...

Good topic! We all need this reminder sometimes.

I've gotten compliments on my character development and the descriptions of my worlds. Those are the things that keep me going when I'm trying to tackle a nasty plot hole or any other kind of writerly quick-sand.

1000th.monkey said...

I think my two strengths are visceral description & writing believable (and usually damaged) characters.

On the problem side, I hate giving away information, so I heavily rely on beta-readers to smack me over the head and say, 'MORE INFO HERE!'. Also, I am prone to run-on sentences :p badly...

E.R. King said...

I think my biggest strengths are my determination and work ethic. I figure if I'm 99% hard work and 1% talent, I can still write something wonderful.
Merry Christmas!

prerna pickett said...

'that' and 'had' are my weaknesses. Along with shrugging.

Jessie Humphries said...

This is a tough one for sure. I think I might be good at...writing dialogue? And my CP's better not comment otherwise! I know where you live!

Gilly said...

Raising eyebrows is absolutely my weakness.

But my CP has said more than once that I'm good at writing the gruesome scenes! ;/

Gilly said...

@prerna pickett

Oh shrugging! I forgot. My characters have a tendency to do that too. Sometimes they do it so much, it's a twitch!

Leigh Covington said...

Oh goodness. I'm not sure what I'm good at yet, but... you really are good at chapter endings! So true!

Stephanie McGee said...

I like to think description is a strong suit but I really have no idea for sure.

JEFritz said...

I'm very good at continuity. I can put something in a very early chapter because I know I'm going to use it later. Also, I remember small things, like what items a person brought with them on a trip. Not all of the time, but a good chunk. It's one thing I don't have to worry about while editing and that's always good.

It's great that you're good at chapter endings :). A strong finish is soooo important. Also, I use those same words a lot, too.

L.A Speedwing said...

I groan and moan a lot. Well my characters do. ;-) So I am very watchful of my groans and moans. I love writing dialogues. I think I am okay at them. I wish they were wittier but it's like wishing for sun in ireland, might as well dream on.

Madeline Jane said...

Oh, you're lucky to rock at chapter endings! I've always liked my ability to come up with novel ideas often. Even if they aren't the best, I love knowing I'll always have a world of ideas to chose from. This post made me happy! ;)

Katie Dodge said...

You are good at chapter endings. And dialogue. I'm not sure what I'm "good" at... Maybe voice? Yikes, I don't know. And you would know if I'm lying. ;)

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

Aww, sweet post, and great idea! Being good at chapter endings is definitely a shining thing to be goo at! Means you can write killer page-turning books. :)

I have a list of things I'm good at, and I review it periodically to make sure I'm not slacking. One of those things is using nature in my stories to enhance the characters and their arc, as well as the plot. It's one of the things I adore doing in my fiction, and amazingly enough, it hasn't gotten old yet for readers or for me. I've been able to keep it fresh and working over and over. It's a lot of fun. :)

Angela Cothran said...

Hmm...maybe description? Is that a lame thing to be good at?

Patti said...

It doesn't seem to matter if I catch all of my over used phrases, because I usually have different words to look out for on the second edit.

What am I good at????

Action scenes.

Karen lee Hallam said...

I just (uh oh) Loved reading everyone's strengths.
We forget to focus on the positive.
Thank you for this deligtful post.
I'm good at...pacing and discipline to focus on work at hand. I'm good at learning Not to be too critical myself. Throwing self-doubt to the wind. (most of the time)

Chantele Sedgwick said...

You guys totally rock. See? We're all good at something! :D :D :D

Brooke R. Busse said...

I'm told I'm good at tension, but the confusion in my stories counteracts that usually.