The Top 5 Mistakes Amateur Writers Make

What are the biggest mistakes amateur writers make? Here’s a summary of the video as well as some additional resources:

1. Not Understanding Point of View

Point of view issues can take a long time to fix, which means that agents and editors will likely be scared off by issues in the POV. Here are some articles that can help:

Developing a Solid Third Person Point of View (Omniscient & Third Limited)

What is the Difference Between Omniscient Point of View & Head Hopping?

2. Too Much Voice

Are you trying to imitate a famous writer’s style? Are you trying too hard to sound writerly or poetic? Are you using too many analogies? You could have too much voice in your writing. Sometimes less is more. It shouldn’t be laborious to read your work, and your writing shouldn’t be difficult to understand.

3. Not Enough Voice

This is when the writing seems bland and unoriginal. Make sure that you’re writing in your own voice, not trying to fit into some preconceived notion of what a writer is supposed to sound like. Also, keep your character’s voice in mind as you write (if writing third limited or omniscient). Sticking close to your character can help your voice sound interesting and unique.

4. Too much Telling (Not Enough Showing)

Everybody knows you’re supposed to show instead of tell. Telling can really hold your novel back from shining. Here are some articles that will help:

How to Show Instead of Tell in Your Writing

How to Dump Info Without Info Dumping

5. Not Enough Conflict

Sometimes writers forget that conflict is what makes a story interesting. Without conflict, the reader has nothing to latch onto or find interesting. Though this video focuses on plotting, it’s with an eye towards conflict and connecting scenes so that the story has a continuous (and captivating) flow:

How to Plot a Novel

Need more help with your novel? Check out my editing and mentoring services.


2 thoughts on “The Top 5 Mistakes Amateur Writers Make

  1. CB Deem says:

    Hi there. I am struggling with POV, and was looking to read your blog info on 3rd limited POV. However, the links don’t seem to work. Is the article no longer available? THanks.

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