Duel Writing: What I Learned… So Far

My sister and I are writing a series together. We just recently finished the first draft of the first book. Here’s the problem. It’s screamingly obvious who wrote what, at least it is to me. I see this as a temporary issue only. After editing this sucker a million times, it should become impossible to tell who wrote what… in theory.

Anyways, what this taught me is that I have a writing style. This should be a “duh” moment, but I never realized it because I’m so familiar with my own writing style. But when placed right next to another’s writing, my style is so present it jumps off the page.

I noticed I get inside the character’s head often (WAY more so than my sister). I’m also fairly light on description and bothering to make sure everything sounds flowerly. I don’t care if something sounds prettier, if it makes something more difficult to read, I change it. Less is more. If you can say something in three words or seven, why bother with seven even if it sounds fancier? I also noticed I rely heavily on dialog to get a character’s emotions across.

The biggest difference is with actions scenes. My sister tends to pull back and paint pictures with words. And then you get to mine. Short sentences. Unfinished thoughts. The feeling of panic… I try to make you feel what the character is, are they scared, calm, on auto-pilot? I’m not sure if I succeed (Confession: only my sister has ready my work so far. Though, when I cut off an action scene to another one she said she was dying to get back to that character, so that’s a good sign). I’m not sure if one style is better than than the other because everyone has their own opinions, but it’s just some things I noticed about how I write. And actually, I quite like it.


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