The Good Writer & The Bad Writer

Is there such a thing as a good or a bad writer? I have battled with this thought in my head for quite too long. I think it’s time to unleash my thoughts!

As a writer, I have experienced that newbies in writing are always chased by an incessant thought – they are not good enough. I’m sure to this many of you may agree. Or was it just me? 😛

When I began writing, I would always feel that something’s amiss. Whatever I did felt insufficient, unsatisfying. A need to do better prevailed even after multiple edits were done. Thoughts somehow seemed insignificant, unrealistic. I’ll be downright honest – the nagging thought that I am not a good writer made most of my days worse, with no inspiration to scribble even a sentence.

So then how does one become a good writer? As many of you are prepping up for the NaNoWriMo, does this thought cross your mind too? Is there such a thing as a good or a bad writer?

I say yes. I have met them both. They both live inside of me, renting out rooms in my mind. Motivating yet belittling. Praising yet critiquing. At times, they drive me crazy with their endless banters, but I’ve got to find a balance if I do not wish to lose sanity.

So here goes, certain instances that both have enjoyed, leaving me restless.

Good writer (GW): I think this post is amazing, reflecting my thoughts perfectly.
Bad writer (BW): This writing is so bad, it makes no sense. You are too naïve to see through the gaps and will fall right through it. 

~~~~~

BW: You’ll never rise up the pedestal. Look how shabbily you write!
GW: But I’m doing everything I can, why then you say this?
BW: And don’t you see how badly you fail?
GW: But I will learn it in time. I will be better.
BW: I bet you won’t. You will receive nothing out of this trial. Better quit, do something else.

~~~~~

And I’ve been pestered for years. Phew!

What I’ve learned after careful observation is this –

The insecurities, uncertainties make the bad writer. The grit, the dedication make the good one.

I have struggled in vain, to eradicate these thoughts, but gained nothing. They are both here to stay. I better choose who I listen to, and who I ignore.

There’s no such thing as a good or a bad writer. So don’t be afraid or intimidated. One learns and grows – it’s as simple as that! Everyone has a unique style of writing, and that’s it. Nothing good, nothing bad. If you write, you’re a good writer. PERIOD!

What do you think guys? Do you think such a thing as a good or a bad writer exists? Share your thoughts. Let’s talk!

-Asha Seth

137 thoughts on “The Good Writer & The Bad Writer

Add yours

  1. Oh geez louise, rambling musings indeed. LOL I guess I can only beg pardon for the novel-length reply with the excuse that I’ve been thinking on this question all day, and have been coming back and forth, writing a little more at a time, until I pressed send on that monstrous essay. LOL

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    1. I was excited more than ever… Xian… Observing your elation to pen such thoughts made me go all hasty and sadly I couldn’t find time until now to read it all in a breath. Keep them words coming, my dear.
      You are welcome to my blog. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. In my opinion, anyone who is brave enough to fight past those doubts and fears and insecurities, to knowingly bare to the world their scars and soul and SELF…that person is an AMAZING writer. Even if they muster up that courage only once in their lifetime. Even if it is but a single word.

    As for the “bad” writer…well, I try to look at it from another perspective whenever I start slipping into that slump of self sabotage. I remind myself that even if I DON’T get a word out, this time, just being willing to come back to it again makes me a “good” writer. And that gives me the self confidence to try again the next time. Most of the time, anyway.

    The biggest obstacle I struggle with is getting past the idea of being judged by others, and found wanting. “You sound pompous and pretentious. Stilted and awkward. You can’t really write, you’re only trying to fool people into thinking you can. And it will be obvious to anyone who reads this.” “This sounds juvenile, like it was written by an elementary school kid. “You can’t really write, you’re only trying to fool yourself into thinking you can. And it will be obvious to anyone who reads this.” Sometimes, I’ll take a great piece and, convinced that I’ll be reviled or ridiculed, I’ll rip it to shreds, leaving behind a mess of words mangled beyond repair. Unable to shake this fear that eats at me, that people will think I’m either a boring know it all or a dumb buffoon, I find it far too easy to just give up. Why bother?

    I think a lot of people reach this point of frustrated apathy, or at least someplace similar. In my opinion, how they move forward from there will determine not if they’re a bad writer, but if they’re a good writer falling into bad habits. Because to me, there is no such thing as a bad writer, just good writers who get stuck in in a cycle of bad writing choices. For instance, when I’ve reached the point where I feel like giving up for good, the best thing to do is to take a break. There is nothing wrong with stepping away from a piece and taking a break before coming back to it. The bad habit trap begins when I start finding reasons, or coming up with reasons, to NOT go back. Procrastination is my mortal enemy. And commitment and I, well, we aren’t always on the greatest of terms, either. When I get bogged down by doubts, I don’t always feel like a “good” writer, but it isn’t until I catch myself making excuses not to write that I actually feel like a “bad” one.

    What this rather lengthy musing boils down to then, I guess, is that for me, good or bad is a matter of perception. Every writer is amazing, and the other two words only apply to their practices, not their person. It isn’t about talent, or anything else involving skill, really. To me, a writer is only good or bad when it comes to their habits and self discipline.

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    1. Well, it’s fundamentally a good thing to have your thoughts expressed explicitly. As it will benefit readers immensely, I believe. I agree word by word to your mentions here, as incidently I have been witness to all these grave matters of heart and mind when it comes to writing.
      So yes, it’s great you took the time to type. 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Love this. Especially the coffee mugs!
    Being a writer means I am someone who writes. Just like a driver is someone who drives. Writers are people who do something. As long as we are writing, we are writers. The good and the bad need to take their argument outside.

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    1. I most enjoyed your ‘About’ page, Petra. I think you’ve got an amazing style to captivate your readers.
      I second with your thoughts on the post. As long as we write, we are writers; nothing good, nothing bad.
      Welcome to my blog, Petra. Good day! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I so love this, I feel the same about anything I write. Either it’s amazing and I publish it and then sometime in the future I look back and hate it, or I never post it in the first place. I cast it away as an artist thing, cursed to never see the beauty in our own work.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I’ve found through reading and writing, everyone has different styles and a uniqueness that is their own. I have had teachers praise my writing, when I was in school, and some that I could never please. There is a reason there are all different ways to express yourself in words; we are all unique. Embrace the writing, don’t over think it, and realize the more you write, the more you improve upon your own style and expression!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. This is the first time I had to keep pressing the down scroll key to reach this comment box, A big congratulations to you 🙂
    I am not a writer, I just love the feeling of admitting things with the help of Words…to be honest, when I come across something written with so apt words like this post 🙂 … I do feel that Yes there is something like a good write and ‘Not that good writer’. Actually I didn’t want to use that word bad writer.
    When I start writing, that moment of constant struggle with words and thoughts and the engagement with prioritizing thoughts, I do feel whoever has that strength to keep on struggling with words and thoughts… and love to repeat this struggle every time.. is a good writer.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. And, then there’s the question, “When do I call myself a writer?” But, since you’ve said that if you write, you’re a good writer, I can rest in peace. 😀
    Great, inspiring post reflecting and challenging our insecurities. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Hahaha…. wow. It’s really a great post and we need to think upon it.

    As I’ve been writing for 2 years now but still if I write my old posts, it really sucks. Hahaha

    Being a writer means you learn day by day. 😅😊

    I lived your post Asha. 😃

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I believe a write up is a relative thing. What is perceived as a piece of “bad writing” by someone, might appeal to another. Leo Tolstoy never won a Nobel Prize. That does not make him any less of a writer than others who won the prize. Honestly, I am so addicted to James Hadley Chase books, widely considered as garbage 🙂 In this case, along with the writer, the reader too is pure trash.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Oh! I absolutely love this post and the fact that I can relate so well. There’s always scope for improvement and learning. We’re blessed as individuals to keep trying for the same. 🙂
    Never let these words fall short. Stay blessed. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  11. When people start out their writing isn’t bad but it lacks certain things that only come from learning the craft through one’s own work and also from reading of others. It’s a process, bad writer thoughts afflict many of us but for the most part they can be combatted with people who wish to help by giving confidence and constructive feedback. You are a talented writer, I always enjoy your words, so keep up with them!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I am well my friend! So busy recently that I haven’t been able to do much but I am glad to be back and reading your words and being part of your writing life again.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh, I was wondering if you had forgotten this friend from India who longs to have a hear at your words. But it’s relieving to have you back. Occupied you always have been, but manage the stuff well with also being around which is super I guess. We shall talk some time soon. Give me a call when you have minutes to spare. J 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Yes my friend I will let you know when I am available, lots of stuff happening with book commitments, getting ready to move house and so on but things will calm down soon and we shall have a right good catch up!

            Liked by 1 person

  12. I have the same inner conflict. It’s only human to have self doubt. It’s the part of us that is willing to overcome it that puts us apart from the rest. Just remember to never give in to those bad thoughts and keep writing. 😁

    Liked by 2 people

    1. A powerful message youve shared here, Anthony. Never give in is the mantra. Good and bad both are in us, we must choose wisely. Many writers will benefit from your advice. Let them comin! 😎 How have you been, my friend?

      Liked by 1 person

  13. i feel the ‘mood’ determines, rather differentiates the good & bad writer, If you force your mind to think and your hands to write just because you wanted to write something, then the odds go downside. At the same time, when you write just because you feel like writing then your odds are high to be a good writer.. There are lot of parameters involved other than Grammatical errors.. isn’t?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Absolutely precisely. Mood does have a hand. But i guess most of us are often too harsh with ourselves when we strive to be perfect or are envious of others and wish to climb that elusive pedestal. But patience is the key. Don’t wanna go all preachy but I appreciate your thought here. 😋

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Asha,

    Dear by the way, this article confirms that you are not a bad writer at all.

    I think there’s nothing called good or bad writer… because everyone thinks differently. Thinking can be bad and good… when it is expressed it can be termed as bad or good. If bad thinking projected on a write up and people hated it then it’s a good write up 😂😂😂. Because bad thinking projected so well that it termed as bad.

    Yeah, I have encouraged everyone to pen down their thoughts… and give someone to make it presentable if you are not good enough. Thoughts matter the most… nothing else….

    Sorry I wrote something probably away from what you intended.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Well, I guess it all depends WHY are you writing, Asha.
    If it is for self, then I would say there is no such thing as good or bad writer. But if you are or want to do writing at the professional level, then there is something called – bad, average, good, extremely good and exceptional. I am not demotivating anyone, but yes, it does matter in outer world.
    Practice, explore and you undoubtedly can reach from level-1 to level-5! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

        1. Oh, going bck home is one of the finest feelings in the world. Cheers and have a safe journey, Aditi..😍 As to FB, I ain’t frequent. But I shall check today. Now that I know that something awaits me there. 😄

          Liked by 1 person

          1. No doubt. That too if going back after four long months.😍
            Thank you Asha!😘
            And yeah do check. You have not enabled the option of sending you friend request, I guess. So had sent you a message.😁

            Liked by 1 person

  16. There is no good or bad writer…if you write then you are a writer. That’s it.

    The product, on the other hand, is a different story. Writers, each of us, can write great stories, blogs, articles, etc… just the same we can all write poorly from time to time.

    Creating a good product, after all, is a skill. And as humans we all make mistakes.

    The difference in writing something well versus writing something that falls flat, as I see it, is the inspiration behind your writing. Are you writing without desire or thought, or do you write with your heart and mind to create something beautiful? If you do this, then the written piece will always have meaning, and thus, be good.

    I’m hoping to have a blog posted along these same lines tomorrow. Check back then if you’d like to contribute to a discussion on inspiration.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, inspiration plays a crucial role. And so does the mood. Someday you may just want to vent out stuff and some other day write a beautiful poem. But all’s well as long as the purpose of writing is served. I shall await the blog post and would love to share my thoughts. Do post the link here.

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  17. Like anything it’s in the eyes of the beholder. What one person thinks is ‘good’ another may read as trash. So, who knows? The point is to write for one’s own enjoyment, research, pleasure, learning, inner cleansing or whatever. If one person gets something out of it, even if it’s only you, great….if you’re lucky enough that it’s someone other than yourself, it’s an added bonus! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Bad writers don’t understand this, which is precisely what makes them bad writers. They presume their writing has achieved a certain level of excellence, so they are often closed off to editing or rewriting. They can seem haughty, prideful, and arrogant.

    But really, it’s laziness and fear (mostly fear).

    Why don’t they edit? Why don’t they write ahead? Why do they give into the myth of the overnight genius? Because they’re afraid of putting the work in and failing. As a result, their work is scattered and disconnected, not nearly as good as they think.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Good writers practice. They take time to write, crafting and editing a piece until it’s just right. They spend hours and days, just revising.

    Good writers take criticism on the chin and say “thank you” to helpful feedback; they listen to both the external and internal voices that drive them. And they use it all to make their work better.

    They’re resigned to the fact that first drafts suck and that the true mark of a champion is a commitment to the craft. It’s not about writing in spurts of inspiration. It’s about doing the work, day-in and day-out.

    Good writers can do this, because they believe in what they’re doing. They understand this is more than a profession or hobby. It’s a calling, a vocation.

    Good writers aren’t perfectionists, but they’ve learned the discipline of shipping, of putting their work out there for the world to see.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. Ghalib said
    “ne satayish ki tamnna na sile ki parwah
    gar nahin hain mere ashaar mein maani, na shai”
    (If what I write is devoid of meaning, so be it, I never care for appreciation or for reward)
    And with this attitude, he was a damn good writer.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Asha, you just echoed my thoughts through your post. This is one battle which I constantly face. I still have a few write ups which I have not published as I felt they are not good enough.
    While at other times I am elated to read what I write.
    I may not be as good as many of you, but as long as I grow and evolve as a writer, I am happy.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I only want to be better than I was the day before. Going at this rate, I guess I’m doing pretty well. If I have to compare myself at all with all the awesome writers out there, I won’t be able to come out of that dingy hole I hide in. As for unpublished work, I guess we all have grown through them and have walked past parking aside our reservations with untouched, unvisited drafts.
      You write brilliantly. Humble as ever your thoughts here are. Radhika. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  22. I honestly believe Asha that each person with their own story to tell is a good writer..to me no one can fail at this if it comes from a place inside of you that needs to be released how can it be anything other than good? But then again this is coming from a grown woman who still likes to color so there ya have it! hahaha! 🙂 ❤ 🙂 XO!

    Liked by 2 people

  23. “If you write, you’re a writer.” – – – You meant “you’re a good writer”???
    I think, who writes from heart feels good whereas if you don’t have that may feel a bit forced. This is from self. On the quality of the writing, it is purely the perception and type of the readers. Usually a passionate writer, that does not affect much. He/she will be open and keeps writing… Of course, that will make the writer refined and more matured in his style and choice of words to express him/her.
    Yeah, summary is… there are good and bad at times from the perception of each writer and each reader…. for each of the creations!

    Liked by 2 people

  24. I love this post, everyday is a battle of telling myself I’ll never be good enough or to give up. There’s always a better writer to compare yourself to, but it doesn’t get you anywhere. The only thing to do is write! I also like your point that everybody has a different writing style. If we all wrote the same, books would be pretty boring!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. You have a nice point here. If everybody thought, mused, wrote the same way, it’d be so darn boring. And books would no more be an escape for addicts like us. And yes, comparison takes one nowhere. Thank you, Joanna.

      Liked by 1 person

  25. I scratched my head when I started reading Diwali post. Not because of lack of understanding, those words. Simple words I knew but I don’t use them. I posted about Diwali too but I couldn’t end my feelings like that and exactly that is how the bad writer popped out 🙃 Tbh I’ve an impulsion of “what if” making me to end up with this cross checking judgements on everytiny thing.. soo much mess i know. I feel I could’ve comment this better now too 🙃

    Liked by 1 person

  26. There is nothing called good writer or bad writer. We are here to learn and the only way to do so is to keep rolling the pen and improving our writing. Do not bottle up,just voice your mind.:)
    Cheers!!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. The only thing I know about good writers are they write it to convey something .. And if it leaves an impact on the reader then the purpose is served . like u did .. This post reflect on how do u perceive ur writings are. Good n bad write reside nowhere but in urself .its how u think It to be .. Wonderful

    Liked by 3 people

“I love writing. I love the swirl and swing of words as they tangle with human emotions.” ― James A. Michener

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