Wednesday, October 19, 2011

What do you think?

I recently read this:

"...while it is impossible to make a competent writer out of a bad writer, and while it is equally impossible to make a great writer out of a good one, it is possible, with lots of hard work, dedication, and timely help, to make a good writer out of a merely competent one."

I can't decide if this depresses me or encourages me. I guess it depends on where I rank myself. I hope I am at least a competent writer.

How does this quote make you feel? Do you agree? Do you disagree? And for bonus points, who wrote this?


Jessica R. Patch said...

It confuses me! lol

Rebecca H. Jamison said...

If you're published, you're a great writer. Duh!

And, as a former English teacher, I don't agree with this quote. One of my worst writers went on to ace her advanced writing classes because she really wanted to become a better writer.

Good writing can be developed by emulating great authors and by practicing.

E.R. King said...

I'm okay with competent, so long as I'm always working toward great. I don't think anyone really arrives at great without starting at competent!

Jolene Perry said...

I think the skill of writing can be made for anyone willing to put the work into it.

The storytelling part . . . I know we can learn HOW to tell our stories better, but this is the creative side where I really believe you can only do so much.

So, I didn't really answer the question, just broke it up a bit.

Abby said...

Confusing and a little depressing to. I have to agree with your remarks about it. But shoot girl - you've got a book published so you've got to be doing something right! :)

Chantele Sedgwick said...

I'm confused and depressed... :) I do know there is so much more I need to learn though. At least I can keep learning, right?

Peggy Eddleman said...

I don't agree. I think it should say "Whether you are a bad writer, a competent writer, a good writer, or a great writer, you can always step it up with a lot of work. If you have natural talent, the work will go quicker, definitely, but all is available to anyone who works hard enough." Or something more elegant that says the same thing. :)

Kristin Baker Przybyla said...

Without looking at previous comments, I believe that was Stephen King in his book On Writing. I love that book, but I disagree with this statement. EVERYONE starts out bad at something if they have no previous training. It's possible to improve yourself with lots of hard work and study.

However, I do think that in some areas, talent can take you just so far. No matter how much I train or study, I'll never sign a recording contract. I just don't have the voice. I'll also never be a rocket scientist, because my brain refuses to understand math.