Why Can’t I Write? It’s a very common question! Writing is a technical challenge, as well as a creative one. To write well in any style requires the development of practical writing skills, and then of course practice! Sometimes years of hands-on experience is necessary, but there are things you can do to speed this process up. 

See the advice we have prepared below to help you conquer your writing challenges in a wide variety of styles and forms. Try clicking the links to take you to helpful information! Letter Review is a literary journal and writing resource that is here to help you get published, performed, and produced.

We aim to help writers at every stage of their development, from first putting pen to page (or finger to keyboard), all the way to the realisation of your writing dream. Of course, for some writers getting the words down on the page is the ultimate dream!

Can’t Write Fiction

If you can’t write fiction, it can help to start by considering what all novels have in common. Check out a guide on where to start. If you’ve had a few false starts, consider why your writing might not be working in the way you want. Read what others have said about why fiction is so hard. Perhaps you’re not alone in not liking your own work?

Work out how long it will realistically take to write a novel, or a short story. Practice generating some original ideas. Work out whether you’d like to study creative writing. Work on your central conflict. Think about your creative ‘voice’. Examine ideas like writing ‘flow’, and making your work more ‘poetic’. Maybe success is as simple as learning how to stop hating your own writing. If you love writing setting then think about how to best use weather. Once you’re feeling more confident about what you are writing, it’s time to turn up the productivity!

If you’re enjoying learning about ways to improve your fiction writing, then check out the whole fiction category of advice at Letter Review.

Can’t Write Poetry

If you can’t write poetry, then it’s time to check out some resources to improve your skills. Lots of people worry that they aren’t talented enough to write poetry, but that shouldn’t stop you! Before you decide that your poetry isn’t good, it can help to think about what defines a good poem in the first place.

And also, what is poetry exactly? You’ll need to know how many lines a poem should have, how long it should be overall, and think about the relationship between poetry and emotion. Will your poem follow grammatical rules?

Perhaps you’d like to write a poem from a particular point of view? Work out some things to avoid, and what your own opinion on rhyming in poetry is! It’s worth thinking about how you will write your poetry book down, and how long the whole book should be when you’re finished!

If you enjoy reading about how to improve your poetry, then consider checking out the entire poetry category at Letter Review for lots more helpful information.

How To Know if Your Story Idea Is Original

Can’t Write a Play

If you can’t write a play, then read on to discover some helpful tips and hints to take your skills to the next level. Start broad by considering techniques to become a better writer. You can work out your central character. Then move on to their friends and mentors!

Research techniques for bringing your audience up to speed on what they need to know. There are lots of literary techniques out there which are worth a look. Maybe you’re being too hard on yourself and trying to rush your work? After all, plays can be hard to write!

Don’t be discouraged at the thought that you might not have the talent. Get technical instead, and think about scene structure, and how long a play should last. Sharpen your skills to make your self as effective as possible. Finally, work out where to put your intermission, and how you should wrap up!

If you feel your skills are getting sharper as you read these resources, then don’t hesitate to check out the rest of the play writing section in Letter Review.

Are All Novels Fiction? What You Need To Know

Can’t Write a Screenplay

Why can’t I write a screenplay? It gets asked all the time. First of all, you might want to consider advice from others who have wrestled with the same question. Co-writing with a partner can be a fun way to learn some new skills. Review your idea generating process. Have a think about why others have failed.

It can help to think about whether a screenwriting career is really the right path for you. And realise that maybe you’re being too hard on yourself, because this job is tricky!

Consider whether you’d like to take classes, or go ahead and teach yourself with the help of resources like Letter Review.

Remember, no matter how you are feeling right now, that anyone can become a writer!

If reading these resources is helping you to feel more confident about your writing skills, then make sure to check out the entire screenwriting category of articles at Letter Review! We hope you find all the information you need to achieve your writing dreams.

4 Differences Between Poetry and Music

Conclusion

If you can’t write, you’re in a great place because the only direction you can go is up! Learning to write is one of the most fun and rewarding journeys you can embark on in your life. So congratulate yourself on taking the first steps in this exciting new phase of your life.

If you feel your writing is getting better and better, then why not consider entering our Letter Review competitions, or perhaps submitting your writing for consideration at Letter Review. Remember to let your friends know about these resources too, as discussing techniques with friends is half the fun!

You can share any of these articles on social media, or link to them from your site if you have one.

Remember that learning to write is a life long journey, and as writers we may never stop learning! The sense of satisfaction as we get a little bit better is so rewarding. Hope you enjoy visiting Letter Review!


Ol Adams

Letter Review is currently edited by Ol Adams, who is a PhD candidate in Creative Writing, casual academic, and guest lecturer at the University of New South Wales. Ol Adams has had short stories published in leading literary journals such as Overland, Southerly, Seizure, and TEXT. Ol has had novels long listed for major awards such as the KYDUMA, has received government funding to produce plays from Create NSW and screenplays from Screen NSW, and has performed / produced professional work at major theatrical venues such as the Sydney Opera House.