Writing is like running. If you run the same distance at the same speed over the same terrain every day, you’re not going to get stronger. You’re not going to improve your stamina. In fact, your body will adapt to the run, and you will actually get less benefit from the exercise. Plus, if you run in the same place every time, odds are, you are going to get very bored.
As writers, it is very easy to fall into a single style and medium. Maybe, it’s the only type of book you like to read, maybe it’s what comes most naturally to you, or maybe, it’s the only thing you thought to write. So you write that same type of story over and over again. In a way, that’s good. You learn the ins and outs of that style, and you get better at it.
On the other hand, there are risks, too. Too much of the same thing can lead to boredom. It can lead to laziness. What it probably won’t lead to is growth.
To grow as a writer, you have to challenge yourself. As clichéd as going outside of your comfort zone is, sometimes that’s what you have to do to make writing fresh or to push your problem-solving skills. There are endless ways to push yourself as a writer.
My current challenge is my writing experiment blog, twytte. In it, I’m working on a variety of genres at once and different mediums (poetry, novels, etc.) – I’m also publishing as I write. How good the finished pieces will be, I don’t know; however, it’s definitely working my brain and my writing abilities.
I’m running further, I’m running longer, and I’m running more often. It’s hard work. When it stops being hard work, I’ll have to try something else.
One challenge at a time.