• Emma Buryd

The Three Types Of Writers And Their Creative Processes

There are 3 types of writers, most do not know what they are and that is why they struggle so much with the creative process. Find out which type you are and how to exploit your potential to the fullest.

When talking about writing styles or types of writers, they usually talk about novel writers, screenwriters, copywriters, etc. But those are not types of writers, they are just different disciplines.

The types of writers are determined by the creative process of each one, the way they approach writing, rhythms and ways of thinking. Two famous novelists can be two totally different types of writers.

Finding out what type of writer you are will help you a lot to structure a more orderly, better oriented and more productive writing process. Since I found out which type I am, it’s easier to organize a writing session and the work seems to flow smoothly.

The three types are Compass Writer, Map Writer, and Antenna Writer. Neither is good or bad, better or worse, they are just different. Which type are you? Let’s find out!

Antenna Writer

They are called this because they are great receivers of stories. The Antenna Writer is absolutely dependent on inspiration.

They prefer to have no guidelines or rules of any kind and they prefer to rely merely on inspiration. In this bag are the most naive, who believe that this is how it is written and those who write believing that they are guided by the muse of talent. Oh, the talent!

The mechanics of this writer is to have an idea, or feel inspired and start writing without knowing where it is going.

Antennas believe that there is a kind of magic around writing, something that you cannot describe but that you know what is there. They believe they have it and make the most of those moments of inspiration. They don’t stop often to ask what, how, or why, they just go on.

What results from the work of an Antenna Writer? Because they are so good at receiving stories, scents, and inspiration from outside sources, they can come up with the most inspiring and emotional texts. They are great for expressing feelings that are not theirs or emotions that they have not felt, getting readers to create great bonds with their characters.

The problem? They are often lost in the process. If you get too carried away by the muse you can end up with a text without beginning or end, they lose order. On the other hand, they rely TOO MUCH on inspiration and at those times they better be disciplined to keep up.

They only know that they are going, they are not sure where, but there they are going.

Compass Writer

The Compass Writer is greatly misunderstood. In fact, most writers who claim to be Compass Writers are actually Antenna Writers.

A Compass Writer is someone who knows where he is going. The compass is for that: to guide you when you have a point to go. A compass without a destination point is of no use to you, right?

Knowing where they are going, the Compass Writers trace the path as they write it. There are also many risks to write like this: the path will not always be the best or the shortest, and you will not realize it until you get lost or arrive and see the detour you have taken, if you ever realize it.

Like the time I thought I could get to Chicago without a GPS and ended up in Tijuana. Compass Writers have to assume, from my point of view, that the first draft only serves to discover the story they want to tell. Afterwards, they will have to analyze and rewrite.

That is to say: writing like this is perfectly feasible but assuming that after that first draft there can be a lot of rewriting work. Which can mean writing the novel completely a second time, because there are changes that cannot be made by going back and forth and changing here and there.

The usual problem for most Compass Writers is that they do not assume this step and that they believe that once that first draft is written, they will only have to correct the mistakes and that’s it.

I think this is foolhardy: a first draft, written as it occurs to you, no matter how clear you are about a series of elements along the way, you run the risk of having problems with the narrator, the structure or the characters.

And if you have already designed all that in advance, even if it is in your head, then you are not a Compass Writer but a Map Writer; the type that I am.

Map Writer

The Map Writers plan before we write.

I recommend doing it in two phases; the first design of all the elements to know and decide the story you want to tell. And the second stage of structure: decide how you tell it.

After these two stages comes the third stage, common to all writers: writing.

But the Map Writers approach writing with an outline, which is a list of scene cards from the entire novel, or at least a division by chapters, definition of narrators, etc.

Our big problem? We focus on preparing everything before writing and having a clear vision of everything so that when the moment of truth arrives, we are exhausted by just making outlines. It is in those cases that I envy the Antena Writers who are carried away for hours as free spirits by the muse.

Have you figured out what kind of writer are you? It’s okay if not, it is not a thing to choose which one we like or not, it is more to discover it along the way. Once you know it, your creative processes will be more natural and spontaneous, since we will not struggle with our own nature.


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