The sample is the first thing I write in the morning, and it makes me smile, too.
I’m not usually so picky about the sample; I’m happy to throw it in the trash when I’m done writing.
But my sample is a bit different than I expect.
“I was reading this blog post,” I write, “and it was written by an author who was not a fan of the topic.
That’s a little disconcerting.”
I can see why.
My sample contains words I’ve already written, such as “sick,” “bitch,” and “toxic,” and they’re written from a very different point of view.
The author is talking about a real person, a real place, a toxic person.
But it’s the words that seem to be missing.
When I’m writing, I tend to focus on my writing, not on the words in the sample.
But I realize that when I start writing in the middle of the day, I’ve missed some words.
I’ve started writing in my journal or on my phone, which is not a great way to write in an hour.
So I have to think more about the words and how I’m reading them.
When my writing samples start looking different, I start to wonder whether I should write more carefully.
So what should I write?
In order to write well, I need to know what I want out of my writing.
For example, the writing sample for my article on travel writing includes words like “tough” and “gutsy.”
When I first saw the words, I thought, They must mean something to me.
I can imagine how tough it must be.
And I can understand why they’re there.
But how does this relate to my writing?
I can think about the “toughen up” and the “guts” in the word, but I’m unable to think about how tough they are.
When you’re writing about someone, you’re describing them.
But if you want to write about someone in a specific way, like, a doctor or a politician, you’ll need to write something that’s a bit more specific.
“Gutsy” is more specific than “trouble,” “tendency,” or “worry.”
And because it’s written from someone’s perspective, you can write about their life more effectively.
But even the more specific words tend to be vague, like “crazy” or “crazy, ugly.”
The most important word, “bad,” is missing.
“Bad” is a verb, which means to be “bad.”
If someone’s bad, then they have bad things going on in their life.
Thats why it’s important to think critically about how you’re using a word.
“The world is full of bad things.”
When you start writing, you think about what you want from your writing.
When your writing sample doesn’t seem to reflect your own thoughts or feelings, thats when you start to lose sight of the bigger picture.
I write this sample because it gives me a good start.
And it will be a good one, for the rest of my life.
It’ll help me become more aware of what I’m doing, and will help me better understand what I write about.
In the end, if I keep trying to think of ways to make my writing more specific, I’ll just keep making mistakes.
But when I think more carefully about the way I’m using a particular word, I can start to find a way to use more specific and less vague words, and to make the writing better.
The next time I’m stuck, I have this chance to take a step back and see if I’ve gone too far.
You’re not alone.
I don’t have to be perfect to write a good sample.
I have the ability to write my own sample.
This is where I believe I’ve made some great improvements.
I think of my sample as my “good” copy, and I try to be as specific as I can, using words that will make my work stand out from the crowd.
I use “gutter” to describe a person who’s “sad, dirty, and ugly.”
I use the word “totally” to characterize someone who’s not “nice, kind, or trustworthy.”
And I use words like the word my friend is “in love” to denote someone who “has no morals.”
But sometimes I’m just lazy.
I might write something like “the world is filled with people who want to kill people,” or I might put something like a quote that I wrote a while ago like “I’m always looking for the best in people.”
Sometimes I can’t be specific enough.
I like to put the word I’m thinking about in quotes, because it feels more direct.
And sometimes I forget to use a specific word.
Sometimes, my writing doesn’t make any sense.
Sometimes my writing