A writer must consider quality content above all else:
This is a great statement when you first glance at it. It is one of these “think positive” type of messages we all love to hear or read about. I agree with the statement, in the surface style it is given, but I don’t agree writers must consider quality content above all else.
It’s a very subjective thing “quality” – what I might feel is the best writing I have to offer, someone else won’t. What I think is not quality writing, someone else will. A good example is the debate between myself and a writing friend of mine. He adores John Grisham. I myself don’t like him, and I find because he has at least two books out each year, it’s become a bit formulaic, I have nothing against the quality of his writing. His argument is that it’s quality writing, and Grisham can write fast so, what is the problem with a formula?
Nothing really, in this day and age nothing at all. There is a need to have a lot of books written, or you won’t be noticed as a presence online. There is a need to earn income, not just for yourself but for the publisher of your book. I am saying there is a need for quality writing, and the writers who do this have some form of success, along with a lot of advice.
Consider your content, and your audience, and more importantly how you can get what you have written to them in the fastest way possible
Or, better still am I wrong in my assessment of other bestselling writers? I have to think about a very subjective term.
I’m sure you’ve heard this phrase as well, many, many times. Usually it’s when there is something wrong, or dangerous with a product. If this is the case, why do we toss this term “quality” around when it comes to writing on the Internet?
The great Internet, and this is by definition a great leveller. A number of years ago, when I was a far less mature writer, I planned to write on the Internet, and it seemed to be the easiest thing to do.
I won’t argue about what happened, most people have heard of the downfall of the writing websites, but there was a reason, and this reason was quality. For writers it was a good time to be writing, but they worked with non-writers, and this was the beginning of the problems.The quality wasn’t there.
I admit that at first glance, it looked like there was quality content, because it was hard to write a 400 word article, and then get it promoted. The reality was, the were short pieces, and most of my new blog posts are longer than that.
The second problem was how people “saw” the articles. Some saw them as being good, whereas others would point out the mistakes they saw. Until a bigger player made changes to what they saw as quality, there wasn’t a need to change much. At least this is the first instinct of a writer. If it works, don’t change it. Looking back means you can find out if your work is good – or not.
Back to bestselling authors. John Grisham, and Stephen King. Both of whom are bestselling authors. Both of whom my writing friends and I enjoy reading. The point is, they both publish a large number of books at a fairly fast pace. Stephen King has published 54 novels, and Grisham one a year since 1988.
I like King’s writing, and I see it as quality writing. My friend does not. However, there is no “quality alert” with either of these writers.
The same holds true with the Internet. While there are very successful writers out there, there is a major difference. There is a lack of gatekeeping when it comes to writers and the Internet. Since there is such a learning curve, other factors are important to the growth of a writer. Finding your passion is the first step. The next is finding the technology which works best for you. The last is finding the best way to share the best content you have to offer.
Work towards approaching writing as a business, and rebuild those parts which are failing. Become your own quality alert system.
I think that quality writing is indeed in the eye of the beholder. I read a post recently, written by a literature professor, who waxed poetically about the lack of talent in publishing and self-publishing He was looking for big, thematic literature, the kind that he would deem IMPORTANT, with poetic lines and psychological insights. Not everyone is looking for that kind of reading; some of us (I’m one) want to be entertained with a lively plot and lots of action. So, understanding who is calling something “quality” writing is important too.