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I like what you’re trying to do here — but I’m afraid it may not work :(

First question is pretty obvious, but do try to answer it: why do you write? For praise? That’s fine — it’s probably why I write, myself. To educate? To explore trains of thought that continue to niggle? Or perhaps you simply cannot rest until you’ve done an exposition about something you think is nebulous currently?

It can be one thing — it can be a combination of reasons, but once you realize why you write, it should be clearer to you.

Trying to write like someone is a crutch — I probably didn’t explain that, forgive me — and it is one you lean on when you’re trying to find your writing ‘voice’, but will (or should, or perhaps, must?) discard as soon as your writing voice comes croaking out of your pen. So — in the end — finding some author that writes like you want won’t help — because you don’t even know who you are yet. You’ll just continue to mirror every writer you stumble across, spinning in circles, a stomach-tightening ring a ring o’ rosies until you eventually pass out from the nausea.

So.

What do do, what to do

There’s the man. David Adeleke.

Who loves to write. Obviously. And he is on a noble — but potentially self-immolating — quest to be the best writer he can be.

Your algorithm should be this:

  1. Define what ‘best writer you can be’ really means.
  2. Don’t explore topics or people like you do. You see it, right? Even when you’re exploring topics, you’re still exploring the people — because you’re simply exploring the topics the person you’re fascinated with is writing about. Explore what you really like. You don’t know what it is? Thank God we’re young and have the rest of our lives ahead of us — go wild.
  3. When you find what you like, then, AND ONLY THEN, should you find the representative author that is closest to the voice you want to have. Your, er, spirit animal, so to speak.
  4. Experience freedom to go berserk.

Go easy on yourself — nobody’s beating you up for this — would be a shame if you’re the one doing all the damage.

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