Photo by Michael Competielle

Creative Writing and Finding Your Voice

Michael Competielle
Oct 1, 2019 · 4 min read

Without a doubt I’m a storyteller. Everywhere I travel I’ll find a purposeful narrative from my experiences. With the quality of the gift to gab as well as an artful eye, my stories can be witty and engaging yet often long winded and tiresome.

With a narrative history storytelling style I’ll always start with a pre-story illustrating the stage of the story to give the listener perspective. I alway analyze the listeners reaction and modify the story as needed to maintain engagement. Facial expressions and body language along with the listeners interjectionS are clues their connecting to the story.

Some people nod their heads up and down like a bobble head while I can see in their eyes…. I’ve lost them.

Creative writing is a bit different as I’m uncertain to whom I’m writing and what the faceless reaction is. Talking into a soundless abyss if I’m not writing for myself I’ll wind up lost. Lately I’ve been using the percentage of articles read or reader engagement as my metrics to determine my small audiences comprehension and connection.

Attempting to engage a mass audience and formulating my story to suit the masses leaves me angry and incomplete.

Lately my personal challenge is to write an article per day. The idea of writing a coherent engaging article based on any semblance of reality besides my own interpretation requires quite a bit of thought and research. Telling stories for me is actually really easy and so for the most part I’ll write first person narratives.

To motivate myself and get my creative juices flowing I’ll flip thru the 15k photos I have on my cell to determine my daily topic. Finding an inspiring image starts my imagination and internal voice to flow. The sentences formulate quickly into paragraphs as the storyline unfolds.

Thinking like a screenwriter for a film I’ll use the image as a springboard to enter into creative nirvana. With a limited writing skillset I begin the text with basic information such as where I am and why. Proper grammar is less important than getting my point across clearly.

Sitting here naked, vulnerable and alone with my thoughts I start to write without fear nor remorse as I honestly attempt to articulate the situations I’m experiencing and hoping it can be felt as I write.

Armed with only an iPad or my laptop, I write how inspired I am by this thing called life.

Originally I was attempting to wake up early in the morning and begin to write. Issue I was having was I’d awaken refreshed, cheerful and ready to embrace my day. My writing was nothing more than bubblegum words stuck together exposing my early morning meditative state of unrealistic world happiness. Sentences of boring text lacking the abrasive grit of my actual voice I decided to write later in the day after I’d encountered the irregularities and stress encountered throughout my day. Struggling to make it thru without tainting the meat in my head I call my brain.

As reality sinks in often quickly, the days phone calls and emails can change my emotions, it’s then I find I can articulate my most honest emotional thoughts.

Deep concentrated breathing helps me snap back into my own conscious state of calm. Brushing off the uncontrollable frustrations I turn to creative writing to release me tensions.

Rules are made to be broken or at least modified and as it’s generally my modus operandi to bend the rules daily I decided my creative writing should follow a series of rules. Most of which I’ll probably break.

  • Honesty. Don’t say it or write if it’s not honest
  • Write for myself and tell stories I’d enjoy to share
  • Use original photography and my “inside voice”
  • Publish or post daily

Medium has been a great format for publishing my literary works. With a wide range of topics and a high amount followers in many of the publications I decided to post everything on the site.

The double edged sword was when my second article was published and I began to receive an increase in followers and likes. My email feed began to fill with articles on becoming a better writer, where to buy stock images and social media marketing.

In order and to maintain my status as a writer in a publication I recognized I needed to increase the quality of my articles by using catchy titles with trigger words and stock photography.

I’m unwilling to compromise my artistic style and so I write using the honest wisdom of my inner voice.

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